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Found 1,743 Collections

 

Multiple Perspectives: Artwork of the Great Depression

In this activity, students will explore what life was like during the Great Depression through the perspectives of multiple artworks. After using looking strategies to examine six paintings, students will write a short essay comparing and contrasting these artworks while considering what art can reveal about life in particular time periods.

Big Ideas: 

  • How did perspectives regarding life during the Great Depression differ during that historical period
  • How can you see these differing perspectives through artwork created during the historical period?

Keywords: Public Works of Art Project, Federal Arts Project, Works Progress Administration, New Deal

Tess Porter
7
 

Women in World War II

This collection teaches students about the changing role of women during World War II: their role in the workplace, increasing presence in the military, and participation in voluntary organizations that supported the war. Students should think about how these activities reinforced traditional notions of gender divisions while they also allowed women to experience new activities.
Kate Harris
23
 

World War II Lesson Plans and Interactives

Collection of lesson plans and interactive websites related to World War II from the Smithsonian Institution.
Kate Harris
13
 

Fighting World War II at Home

Preparing for World War II in the United States meant uniting the nation and encouraging citizens to support the war with their actions and funds. However, it also created divisions within the nations, as Japanese-Americans were interned, African-American soldiers were segregated, and Mexican workers recruited to help with war-time demands were discriminated against. This collection includes objects reflecting a variety of aspects of homefront life during World War II and works well as an independent activity for students to complete.

Guiding questions for discussion before and after include:

-In what ways did World War II unite the nation? In what ways did it divide the nation?

-What new opportunities were created by the need for more workers in World War II?

-How and why did government regulation of the economy increase during World War II?

-Why do you think the examples of propaganda in this collection were so effective?

Kate Harris
26
 

The Middle Ages: Discover the Story

This collection includes objects and artifacts representing life in the Middle Ages. Students are challenged to write a creative story or narrative based on the objects in the collection, illustrating life at the time. The last two resources in the collection are a worksheet that teachers may use to frame the assignment and a grading rubric for the assignment.
Kate Harris
12
 

Remembering the Holocaust

This collection looks at the way artists have used art, literature, and architecture to memorialize the victims of the Holocaust and explores the questions around how an artistic work, memorial, or museum can try to convey an understanding of genocide.

Questions to keep in mind as you observe each work:
1) What is the purpose of this memorial? Is it to honor, remember, educate others, or something else?
2) On what aspect of the Holocaust does this memorial focus?
3) What Jewish symbols are present? What national symbols are present? Are there human figures? Is it abstract? What other features do you notice about this memorial?
4) What is the setting of this memorial? How does that affect its purpose and design?
Kate Harris
24
 

An Introduction to Hawai'ian Lei Making

All Polynesians have a history of making and giving of lei. From early times, Hawaiians have fashioned lei from shells, seeds, bone, and feathers and from more temporary materials such as leaves, vines, and a few indigenous flowers. Colorful flowers and greenery are braided, twisted, wrapped, or strung together to create lei for the neck, head, wrists and ankles. Lei are made and given for marriages, birthdays, luaus, and funerals. Leis are also given on informal occasions to express gratitude or warmth of friendship. In this collection, you’ll learn how to make your own lei and explore other examples of leis made from a variety of natural materials.
Ashley Naranjo
6
 

The Crusades of the Middle Ages

This collection includes resources for teachers looking for materials related to the Crusades. Students can gain insight into the weapons and nature of fighting in the Crusades by investigating the images included as well as the video on bows, while the essays and map will provide ample background information. Finally, a lesson plan from the Cooper Hewitt Design Museum explains how to design a marshmallow catapult or trebuchet!
Kate Harris
10
 

Hamilton!

Have your students (or you) caught the Hamilton bug inspired by Lin-Manuel Miranda's musical? This collection is filled with resources and teaching ideas about the founding father. With his musical, Miranda has transformed teaching the Founding Fathers from distant and un-relatable to a relevant story of a hustling immigrant whose rise helps progress the American Revolution and set the new nation on track to become the economic powerhouse that it remains today.

Tags: Alexander Hamilton, ten dollar bill, Aaron Burr, duel, treasurer, financial plan, Federalist

#SmithsonianMusic

Kate Harris
14
 

War of Currents

Would alternating current (AC) or direct current (DC) become the dominant power?
This Collection includes images and texts that depict the "War of Currents" that occurred between Thomas Alva Edison and George Westinghouse.
Linda Muller
14
 

Famous Americans

This collection centers around the following famous Americans: Cesar Chavez, Thomas, Jefferson, Martin Luther King, Jr, Abraham Lincoln, Thurgood Marshall, Rosa Parks, George Washington.

What to think about:
1. What do you already know about these Americans?
2. What can you learn from these images and videos?
3. What can you determine just from the picture? (What information is provided?)
4. What information do we still need?

Look through the images with these questions in mind. Then answer some of the short activity quizzes to dive deeper into history!
Marissa Troiano
29
 

Early Alphabet Books

A collection of alphabet books to inspire students to create their own. Alphabet books can be created using any subject and completed with any grade. They can be completed individually (one student makes a page for each letter of the alphabet) or as a group or class (each student takes one letter). Here are some ideas for topics or use with your students:
Kindergarden-1st--Pick a letter, write a sentence using that letter and illustrate.
2nd-4th--The class takes a topic such as insects and each student takes a page, researches and illustrates it.
5th-12th--Students take a topic (biography, historical topic, memoir about themselves, book that they've read) and creates an alphabet book with each page telling the story or giving information about the subject.
Annette Hibbert Nelson
13
 

Historic Iditarod Trail

This collection explores the timeline of Alaska's Historic Iditarod Trail.
Jen Reiter
26
 

Vikings--Myths and Mysteries

The Vikings have inspired many artists, writers, and filmmakers with their bravery and unique way of life. However, many misconceptions have developed and many facts are still unknown. In this collection, students will explore the website for the Vikings exhibit while taking notes on the included worksheet. Then, they'll evaluate three works of art (and a team logo) based on the Vikings to gauge how accurately they represent Viking life. Finally, they will be asked to create their own 2-D or 3-D object representing Viking life.

Tags: Norse, inquiry, Viking, Norway, Greenland, Iceland

Kate Harris
7
 

The Middle East

A collection of resources depicting the countries that make up the Middle East.
Linda Muller
26
 

Macaroni Boy

This Collection features a variety of primary and secondary resources including maps, photographs, texts, and a sound clip to support the historical context of the book, Macaroni Boy.
Linda Muller
22
 

Black Death: the Bubonic Plague during the Middle Ages.

The Black Death was one of the most devastating pandemics in human history as Bubonic Plague spread across Asia and Europe eventually killing between 75 and 200 million people.
Linda Muller
11
 

"Water Matters" Online Conference Series: Archive and Illustration Summaries

This online conference series invites educators and students to take an active role in global environmental issues around water. Learn from experts in the field, share ideas, and collaborate with people around the world who, like you, are committed to solving environmental challenges. Includes illustration summaries and the archive of each session, with interdisciplinary connections to water issues . Original Airdates: Spring 2012
Ashley Naranjo
42
 

Proud Publisher: Heritage Bookmaking Activity

The Smithsonian has joined with book artist Sushmita Mazumdar to create a series of easy-to-do book projects designed to get families talking and creating together. In the "Today I am Here" storybook, students explore their heritage by identifying a person, place, and object to tell the story of their own personal history. Included here is a video demonstration and accompanying downloadable instructions to make your own “Today I am Here” storybook!
Ashley Naranjo
13
 

Spanish Exploration of the Americas

Research the Spanish explorers pictured in this Collection.
Put them in chronological order.
Answer the following questions:
1. What regions did they explore?
2. What did they discover?
Linda Muller
9
 

Investigating Civil War Uniforms

This topical collection includes resources related to Civil War uniforms.  Investigating these Union and Confederate uniforms - through types, differences, and similarities - helps to understand the different human resources of the Union and Confederacy, as well as the experience of individuals who fought in the Civil War. 

Collection contains two lesson plans (both of which can be adapted using resources in this collection), articles of clothing worn by Union and Confederate soldiers, lithographs, photographs, articles, a website, and a symposium.

Keyword: Zouave

Tess Porter
58
 

Investigating a Place: Pennsylvania

This Collection contains stamps, photographs, drawings, sculpture, objects, videos, and music to explore the history and culture of Pennsylvania, the Keystone State. These resources can be used by students to investigate the following questions: How do you define Pennsylvania as a place? What does it mean to be from the Keystone State?
Linda Muller
42
 

Martin Luther King

This Collection of resources highlights key events in the life and work of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. It includes resources that illustrate the Montgomery bus boycott, his Letter from a Birmingham Jail, the March on Washington and his I Have A Dream speech and finally, images and a video from his assassination and funeral.

Key Terms:
Civil Rights Movement
Civil Rights leader
Activist
Black rights
African American rights
Equality
Linda Muller
22
 

Practice Reading Portraits--Black History Month

This collection was created for a brief warm-up activity where students practiced analyzing portraits of recognizable figures as a group, prior to working on their own portrait analysis. Portraits of Muhammad Ali, Serena Williams, Rosa Parks, and Booker T. Washington are included and they vary in detail and medium.

The last resource, a PDF file, is a teacher's guide created by the National Portrait Gallery. Teachers should lead discussion about the portraits using suggested questions in the guide, and then let students search for a portrait of someone of their own choosing to analyze.

tags: civil rights, sports, tennis, boxing, African-American, black history, analysis, comparison

Kate Harris
6
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