Skip to Content
  • Language
  • End User
  • Educational Use
  • Time Required
(183)
(632)
(706)
(653)
(793)
(17)
(329)
(292)
(165)
(381)
(137)
(183)

Found 815 Collections

 

Creative Writing Exercise: Researching Iconic Objects

In this collection, there are multiple images of objects that have been considered to be iconic in society. The objective of this collection is for students to look at the objects and research the significance of those objects.  For this exercise, students will look over the images and write about those objects. This will allow students to use factual information that they look up, process the information, and use it to complete a writing assignment. They could write a fictional story having to do with the object of choice or they could write about a time when they have used the object during their day to day lives. 

Tags: technology; toys; apparel; iconic; 

Samantha Castaneda
10
 

Compare and Contrast: Analyzing Portraits of Significant Individuals

This collection includes a video that presents the question: "What did the artist keep the same and what did he change? Why?" In this collection, there are multiple images of individuals who have made a strong contribution in society. The artists have  placed emphasis on the hands of the sitters. The objective is for students to compare and contrast multiple paintings, with the goal of gaining insights into ways portraitists convey personality with details.

1. Watch the video and write down the similarities between the two paintings that are presented. What are some comments the narrator said about the people in the paintings?

2. The narrator says the hands of the people are given great importance. Why do you think so?

3. Write down the similarities of the people's hands in the portraits.

4. Using that information,  create a T-Chart. On one side of the chart write the overall similarities of the people in the paintings (build upon the findings of the narrator) and on the other side, the differences. 

5. Using that information compare and contrast the second image and third images with the two paintings in the video. Add another column to the T-Chart and write down your findings. 

6. Discuss or write about your conclusions as to what the painters were trying to express about the sitters.  Do you think they were effective?

Tags: una troubridge;  statue; representation; character; photograph; painting; visual.

Samantha Castaneda
4
 

A Just Society

This collection, first of all, is a work in progress and may change as time goes on. The collection includes pieces that are meant to prompt students to think how to create a "just society" and potential consequences when those ideals don't become reality. #SAAMteach

Nikysha (Nikki) Gilliam
20
 

Archives of American Art

Lists: To-dos, Illustrated Inventories, Collected Thoughts and Other Artists' Enumerations

Archives of American Art
62
 

Stories of the American Dream

The resources in this collection are assembled to present a range of perspectives on the American Dream. After we have delved into the concept of the American Dream and its evolution over time, you will examine and consider examples of Americans' attempts to accomplish their unique aspirations.

After surveying the collection, choose one of the following assignments to complete and submit it.  As you are browsing the resources in the collection, you may want to take notes and/or save images.

Possible Assignments:

1) Compare and Contrast: Write an essay that examines how the images reflect or represent  the American Dream. Choose 5 images and for each image, identify the time period, the person/people and place featured, and  the American Dream  referenced. By describing and analyzing each image, evaluate the American Dream. How do the images reflect the idea of the American Dream? What conclusions can we draw from examining the American Dream through these images? How has the dream changed over time and what does it mean today? Are there any aspects of the American Dream that hasn't changed? 

2) Argument: Select a combination of articles, images, and videos (at least 5) to examine. Reflecting on the quote from class consider the extent to which you agree or disagree with the argument presented. To support your claim, use the sources from this collection to write an essay in which you argue whether or not the American Dream still exists. 

Quote: "People have long held the view that America is a place where everyone can freely and successfully seek their dreams. We are a nation of potential success stories, emerged from simple beginnings. We've been told that within each of us lives the spirit of entrepreneurial or educational achievement. Up until recently, this was widely believed as true. But as a result of current economic conditions, this opportunity has been lost and the American Dream of the past no longer exists." (Levy)

Levy, Ellen. "Pursuing the American Dream." Constructing Meaning Instructional Unit. E. L. Achieve, Inc. 2012 


Anita Leonard
34
 

Gender Inequality and Identity: Childe Hassam's Tanagra (The Builders, New York) 1918

This collection includes a multi-day lesson plan built around Childe Hassam's Tanagra (The Builders, New York), 1918, and is designed to explore the effect that gender inequality can have on identity. Lessons are designed for an eleventh-grade, American Studies, Humanities-style course, and the historical context is the Gilded Age and the Women's Suffrage Movement. The plan for this mini-unit includes the analysis of visual, literary, and historical texts, and while it has a historical context, the goal is also to make connections to American life today. The essential question for this mini-unit is this: How can unfair gender norms affect what it feels like to be a human being? Included, you will find a lesson plan as well as digital versions of the artistic, literary, and historical texts needed to execute that plan. #SAAMteach

William Connell
21
 

American stereotype: All Black Pilgrim Attire

Every year near Thanksgiving, images of our Pilgrims father begin to proliferate showing them as very austere and wearing only black clothing. This learning lab introduces images of Pilgrims that are compared with written primary sources. It was customary in the 17th century to inventory all the belongings of the deceased before they were distributed to the heirs. These inventories and the wills themselves provide detailed information about the attire of everyday Pilgrims of this period.

Arthur Glaser
21
 

George Catlin: Lives of the Plains Indians

Long before the camera went west, artists like George Catlin were preserving the images of the native Americans on the western plains. Catlin's paintings are numerous and divide into two genre: the group activities and portraiture. This learning lab focuses on group activities of many plains indians including hunting, traditional dances, and recreation.

Arthur Glaser
32
 

Walt Whitman Poetry and Art

SAAMteach - High School Level English classes

Lesson concept is included in resources

Anne Ruka
7
 

American Revolution

#TeachingInquiry

Sarah Rafalowitz
6
 

30 Second Look Strategy: Learning to Look with the National Portrait Gallery

In this collection, we look at portraiture through the lens of the 30 second look strategy. This looking strategy allows participants 30 seconds to look at a portrait, and then turn away from the portrait and have a conversation about what they saw. This activity challenges participants to first look on their own and then have a collaborative conversation with their peers.

Visually rich portraits, with both objects and setting, are most effective when using this strategy.

Included in this collection are examples of portraits National Portrait Gallery educators have had success with when faciltiating the 30 second look while teaching in the galleries: George Washington, Men of Progress, Shimomura Crossing the Delaware
Briana White
10
 

Jumping In Looking Strategy: Learning to Look with the National Portrait Gallery

In this collection, we look at portraiture through the lens of the jumping in looking strategy. This looking strategy allows participants a more sensory experience with the portrait.

Visually rich portraits, with both objects and setting, are most effective when using this strategy.

Included in this collection are examples of portraits National Portrait Gallery educators have had success with when facilitating the jumping in looking strategy while teaching in the galleries: George Washington Carver, Alice Waters, E.O. Wilson, George Washington, Men of Progress, Shimomura Crossing the Delaware, and Tony Hawk
Briana White
13
 

Inventing Scotland

What makes something Scottish and who decides this? Using the Smithsonian archives this collection features a range of objects and images, some traditionally Scottish and some less so, and asks students to consider how we represent countries and what problems that can present. See 'Information' button for lesson plans.

Amy Johnstone
35
 

Place, Community, and Representation in Photography

Guiding Questions:

How do photographers represent places and other people? What is the goal?

What are the ethical considerations in that representation for photographers?

How can we use images and photography to convey a message and persuade?

How have photographers throughout history used their images to create social change?

How can media, especially photography, raise awareness for social problems and challenges?


The lesson will provide examples of how analyzing and creating documentary photographs can foster deep thinking about global and local issues. Additionally, students will consider how to use digital photography and other digital media tools to communicate ideas or persuade an audience. Students will look at photos from social reformer Jacob Riis who documented the poverty and poor living conditions of immigrants to New York City. His work led to social change and reforms. His images also raise questions about the ethics obtaining photos and representation. The collection also includes images from the Smithsonian’s “Down These Mean Streets” exhibit. Students will consider a view of New York life through documentary street photography and how place and city life are represented in photography.


Time- 1-2 class periods with optional extension activities

Day 1:

Warm Up/ Engagement:

Have students do a chalk talk on chart paper on the following terms:

immigration, urbanization, sweatshop or factory, New York City

These concepts will be important for students to consider and have some familiarity with prior to discussing the work on Jacob Riis.

Looking Closely:

Next, show a photograph from Jacob Riis using the Project Zero Global Thinking Routine, "The 3 Ys" to analyze the story the image tells about living conditions for immigrant workers in New York City.

Students should consider why someone might be taking this photograph and who the intended audience might be.

Additionally, students might read some primary sources from that period written by Jacob Riis or others about the living conditions for immigrants on the Lower East Side of New York in the late 1800s.

Next, have students consider or take on different perspectives in the image by drawing the scene to include the photographer.

Have students read the Smithsonian article about Riis and watch a short video about his life and work. Alternatively, there’s an article from the Click! exhibit on Riis that students can read about how photography changes our awareness of poverty.

Exit Ticket/Reflection:

What did Jacob Riis intend to communicate through his photographs?  Do you think his images are respectful of immigrants and poor people? Why or why not?

Day 2

Today’s work focuses on exploring images from the “Down These Mean Streets: Community and Place in Urban Photography” exhibit. Allow students time to explore the gallery and identify photos that are meaningful to them.

In small groups, have students work in groups of two or three to analyze an image of their choosing in the collection using the “3 Ys” routine. Have students share their findings with the group.

As a reflection, have students consider some of the guiding questions about how photographers choose to represent places and communities.

What associations does the viewer have with these photographs?

What mood is created with these photographs?

How might you be able to create a sense of place with photography?

Extensions:

Additional resources related to Jacob Riis:

Library of Congress Exhibit

Magic Lantern Presentation from Riis

Jacob A. Riis: Revealing New York’s Other Half Educator Resource Guide

  • Have students complete their own documentary photo essay on their own neighborhood or community.
  • Have students read excerpts from ‘Down These Mean Streets’ and connect them to the images in the collection.
  • Join the Out of Eden Walk community and have students document their neighborhood and gather stories.
Allie Wilding
24
 

What Did Gatsby's America Look Like?

Select up to five artifacts that best reflect the setting of the novel. Justify your selections by considering the information provided for each artifact. You can access the information once you select an image and press the lowercase i tab on the left.


Consider how the information from the Smithsonian Learning Lab compares to Fitzgerald's use of setting  throughout The Great Gatsby.

Reminder about setting: five key components that establish the setting:

1: time [moment/hour/morning/evening/season],

2: era, 

3. place {village/city/country], 

4: location{inside a house, at a park, on a front lawn}, 

5: occupation (of protagonist, antagonist especially)

Scott Tuffiash
13
 

Creative Writing Exercise: Dress for Success

In this activity, you will create and develop characters based on the following images. For each resource, you will be give five minutes to write a brief scene in a character would wear the featured garment. 

This activity serves a warm-up for having users think more critically about how they write characters and how details, such as clothing, can impact the greater narrative. 

At the end of the assignment, you will share your characters with the class or group and compare and contrast the different approaches to the images.

tags: character study, fashion, warm-up

Alexander Graves
7
 

Photojournalism: A Study of Perspective

This collection contains a series of photos from Camilo Jose Vergara.  The students will be asked to rate a series of photos for their chronology and how those photos can be interpreted by the viewer.  In the end, students will be asked to document an important part of their family history through photo journalism and then write about their choices and the importance of their selected art. #SAAMteach

Danielle Clayton
9
 

Internal Dialogue

#SAAMTeach

Katie Cahill
8
 

Making "Family Memory" Storybooks: Fun for the Whole Family

This collection includes a series of easy-to-do book projects designed to get families talking and creating together. Any of them can be used in the classroom (English, art, social studies), as a home project, or in an informal learning setting. All books are made from a single sheet of paper.

Titles are ordered generally from most complex to least complex for topic, and include:
"Our Home" Nature Walk Album
Today I Am Here
Connections
My Hero
Music Memories
Kitchen Memories
Special Person
Family Treasure
Things That Make Me Me!
I Am A Star
My Clubhouse
Family Flag
My Name

At the bottom, you'll also find an interview with the creator of these design templates, book artist Sushmita Mazumdar, and a video of her reading one of her own books.

Click on any of these demos and accompanying downloadable instructions to make your own "family memory" storybook!

tags: art, crafts, crafting, how-to

Philippa Rappoport
28
 

Images for Of Mice and Men

These are images from the Great Depression which fit the time period of the novel.

Bonnie Thoreson
14
 

American Transcendentalism

Transcendentalism is a philosophy that is rooted in the belief that man is inherently good but has been corrupted by society. Self reliance, self improvement, and peaceful protest were some methods practiced to reverse this effect. 

Linked in this collection are examples of the movement's influence in society, writings, and art.

Katie ODell
10
 

The Types of Print Culture

Print culture in and before the 17th century, before 1865 to be exact, took the world by storm. It shows the developlment of human communication, political expression, it provides a sense of self worth, and it holds a vital role in today's society. In this collection, each photograph will show the advancement in human intellectuality, advancement in technology, and advancement in creativity and self-expression. This collection will have not only literary pieces and documents, but will also have paintings and photographs.

Lauren McIver
12
 

Constructing History: Exploring Primary Sources.

This unit explores different historical artifacts and the stories they tell. Students will investigate a range of objects, ranging from prescriptions to buffalo hides sourced from different Smithsonian collections.

Guiding Questions:  How do humans shape the narrative of History? Whose History is being told? Is it possible to have multiple versions of the “past”?

The collection consists of 5 sets of artifacts, connected by some aspect such as culture, time period, event or movement. However, these objects each tell a very different story. 

Working individually, in pairs or in small groups, students choose  a set to explore. The students spend time quietly and carefully looking at the sources and investigate what they can tell us about our world, both locally and globally.  This activity encourages students to reveal the multiple layers of meaning in an artifact from the most visible story to what it helps us to understand about the lives of our fellow human beings. 

Students can share their ideas in pairs, or small groups, before coming together as whole class to share their findings.

Time: 40-60 minutes

As a follow up activity, students reflect on what new connections and information they discovered, new ideas that came to light, and what they found puzzling.

Students can complete the handout individually, in pairs or groups. 

Time: 30-50 minutes depending on the length of the follow up discussion.

It might be interesting for students to watch the brief video included, where anthropologist Candace Green and curator Emil Her Many Horses, discuss the Lakota Winter Count as a form of historical record. 

The duration of the video is just under  5 minutes.

For more information about the thinking routines visit:

http://www.visiblethinkingpz.o...

Lisa Holden
18
121-144 of 815 Collections