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Found 6,921 Collections


Latinx Portraiture

Collection created by the Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center to accompany Found-Object Portraiture Project. Find images of students work at #macceduportraiture
Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center

Asian Art at Home: Explore Japanese Art

Let the wonder and the beauty of the museum come to you!  Explore Japanese art with educators from the Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery with these three lessons.  Each lesson features guided looking at Japanese art and an art-making component.  Each lesson can stand alone; complete one, two, or all three lessons as time allows.  The content needed for each lesson is divided by an arrow; look to the right of each arrow to view the information you need for each lesson.  The lessons are designed for students in 1st through 5th grades.

Did you give one of these lessons a try?  Tag us using #FreerSackler or @FreerSackler on FacebookInstagram, or Twitter.  Email us at and we will post your work in the Art Gallery section of this page.

Lesson One: Japan and DC Landscapes

  • Explore the landscapes of Japan! Young learners will see, think, and wonder about Japanese landscape paintings as they think about their favorite landscapes of DC.  After seeing and wondering about the landscapes of Japan, learners will sketch their favorite DC landscape. This lesson will take 30-60 minutes to complete depending on skill level and supplies available at home.  For grades 1st through 4th.  Especially designed for the DCPS 3rd grade spring ELA unit on DC landmarks:  Students learn about various monuments, historical and cultural landmarks, and neighborhoods in Washington, D.C. They deepen their understanding of D.C.’s famous cultural and historical landmarks. 

Lesson Two:  Exploring Japanese Landscapes

  • Young learners will zoom in and explore two works of art by the Japanese artist Katsushika Hokusai (1760-1839).  Learners will be invited to make two sketches:  a symbol to represent themselves and a sketch of their favorite month or season.  This lesson will take 20-60 minutes to complete depending on skill level and supplies available at home.  For grades 1st through 3rd.  Especially designed for the DCPS 1st grade spring ELA unit on symbols:  Students learn about common American symbols [...]. Things and figures can be symbolic and have meaning to people. They make connections to the texts [works of art] by thinking about their values and what symbols best represent them.

Lesson Three:  Make a Mini Japanese Folding Screen

  • Daydream and get crafty!  Learners will create a landscape of their dreams.  After a guided meditation, learners will use collage to create a miniature Japanese folding screen using a cereal box or other items found around the home.  The lesson includes modifications if supplies are limited.  Time needed:  40 minutes - 2 hours, depending on supplies on hand and skill level.  For 1st grade through 5th grade.

Freer and Sackler Galleries

Stitched Stories of Texas

Quilts can keep you warm, be works of art, tell a story about an event in the makers life or commemorate a historical event.    These quilts made by Texas women are examples of their desire to commemorate and remember the stories of their lives and the lives of others.  Some of the quilts have been passed down through family-others are contemporary.  Each has a unique story to tell and highlights the culture and craftsmanship of a particular time in history.


Texas Folklife

Smithsonian Social Studies Online: How do maps reflect change and continuity in history? / Smithsonian Estudios Sociales en Línea: ¿Cómo reflejan los mapas cambios y continuidad en la historia?

This collection contains lesson plans and resources from across the Smithsonian to help students critically examine this essential question through multiple Social Studies content areas. 

Esta colección contiene planes de lecciones y recursos de todo el Smithsonian para ayudar a estudiantes a examinar críticamente esta esencial pregunta a través de múltiples areas de contenido en Estudios Sociales.

National Museum of American History

Visualizing Democracy

This Learning Lab complements the National Portrait Gallery's student program, Visualizing Democracy. 

Students will visualize democracy from the colonial era to the 21st century by analyzing portraits of major figures who played a critical role—as government officials, engaged citizens, or both—in creating a democratic society for the United States. Students will investigate how portraiture can convey democratic ideals and how, as a cultural institution housed in a historic building, the National Portrait Gallery has been and continues to be relevant to American democracy.


Nicole Vance



jen stebbing

Flights of Fancy Three High Flying Friends

This collection accompanies the Flights of Fancy Story Time Online and has resources to explore the friendship between pioneering pilots Amelia Earhart, Ruth Nichols, and Louise Thaden. 

National Air and Space Museum Smithsonian

The Portraits

This Learning Lab consists of all portraits found within student programs at the National Portrait Gallery.

Nicole Vance


Students will take a look at how artists have portrayed the famous Native American,Geronimo.

Karen Gibbs

"Hyphenated Americans": When “Bricklayer Bill” Won the 1917 Boston Marathon, It Was a Victory For All Irish Americans

This collection explores the notion of hyphenated Americans, through the story of one man, William Kennedy, an American of Irish descent, born in New York in the late 19th century, who went on to win the Boston Marathon in 1918. Bill's nephew, in writing about his uncle, said, "When “Bricklayer Bill” Won the 1917 Boston Marathon, It Was a Victory For All Irish Americans." What did he mean?

To aid discussion, included in this collection are images, a cartoon, several articles, a story fro WBUR, and one thinking routine from Harvard's Project Zero Global Thinking - "Step In, Step Out, Step Back" - to "encourage learners to take other people’s perspectives, recognize that understanding others is an ongoing process, and understand that our efforts to take perspective can reveal as much about ourselves as they can about the people we are seeking to understand."

This collection complements chapter 6 ("The Flight From Ireland") of Ronald Takaki's A Different Mirror for Young People: A History of Multicultural America, and supports Unit 2: What is the history?, and Unit 3: Local History and Current Issues, of the Austin ISD Ethnic Studies Part B course. 


Philippa Rappoport

UNC BIOL101L Mollusc Collection

Collection of mollusc images/specimens (specifically chiton, snails, clams, and squid) for the adaptation and variation lab.
Audrey Kelly

Crossing the Delaware Collection by Ashley Naranjo

This collection highlights variations on a theme through works of art: George Washington Crossing the Delaware, George Washington Carver Crossing the Delaware and Shimomura Crossing the Delaware. Comparisons of these works could serve as springboards for discussions about identity, immigration, "master" or dominant narratives in history, and hero myths.

“History matters because it has contemporary consequence,” declared historian Jennifer Guiliano, explaining to an audience how stereotypes affect children of all races. “In fact, what psychological studies have found, is when you take a small child out to a game and let them look at racist images for two hours at a time they then begin to have racist thoughts.”

The assistant professor affiliated with American Indian Programs at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis went on to explain what that means to parents who have taken their kid for a family-oriented excursion to a sporting event with a racist mascot.

“We’re taking children who are very young, exposing them to racist symbology and then saying ‘But don’t be a racist when you grow up,’” Guiliano says. “This is the irony of sort of how we train and educate children. When we think about these issues of bringing children up, of thinking about the impact of these things, this is why history matters.”

Guiliano was among the speakers at a day-long symposium, “Mascots, Myths, Monuments and Memory,” examining racist mascots, the fate of Confederate statues and the politics of memory. The program was held in Washington, D.C. at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture in partnership with the National Museum of the American Indian.

Lonnie Bunch, the founding director of the African American History museum, says this all came about after a conversation with his counterpart Kevin Gover at the American Indian museum. Bunch says he learned that the creation of Confederate monuments and the rise of racist Indian mascots in sporting events occurred during the same period in American history, between the 1890s and 1915. This gathering was one way to help people understand the how and why between that overlap.


Sher Anderson Petty

Abstract food

Images illustrate how artists use simplification and zooming in to abstract images of popular foods.

Jean-Marie Galing

Mystery and Fantasy

These artworks are enigmatic - "mysterious, puzzling, hard to understand, mystifying, inexplicable, baffling, perplexing, bewildering, confusing, impenetrable, inscrutable, incomprehensible, unexplainable, unfathomable, indecipherable."   They are open to interpretation.  

Look at one or more of these artworks. How did the artist create a sense of mystery or fantasy? What do you think it could mean?  

Jean-Marie Galing

Community Murals

These images come from murals that depict people at work.  What jobs do you see them doing? How does each job help the community?

Jean-Marie Galing

Jacob Lawrence

Paintings by artist Jacob Lawrence of people working and playing in their community.

Jean-Marie Galing

How cold was the Cold War?

This is a collection for my final project on the Teaching Historical Inquiry through Objects course.
Maria Mitchell

Anna May Wong x Sally Wen Mao

How can you be a changemaker in society? 

This topical collection honors the life of film icon Anna May Wong by pairing images from the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery collections with poetry by celebrated contemporary poet Sally Wen Mao. Wong's film and television career spanned from 1919 to 1960, and included numerous star turns, transnational celebrity, and an array of firsts for an Asian American actress. It was also a career forged in the shadow of--and in defiance of--widespread xenophobia, leaving a legacy that takes on a new cast and consequence today, in an era of COVID-19 and virulent anti-Asian racism. 

After viewing this topical collection, visit to:

  • download a set of postcards that include portraits of Anna May Wong and Sally Wen Mao's poetry
  • watch a short video by Sally Wen Mao about her "patron saint," and
  • instructions for making your own postcards.
Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center

Math: Unstacked

UNSTACKED is a wonderful way to spark inquiry, analysis, and discussion. By visually exploring our images, you can bring the Smithsonian Libraries' collections into your classroom. Use UNSTACKED as a morning exercise, a way to introduce a new topic, or to discover your students' interests. Picture your world, dive into the stacks! 

The research and creation of this project was funded by the Gates Foundation Youth Access Grant.

Smithsonian Libraries


the hope diamond is evil.

jen stebbing

Collisions in Portraiture

Collisions in Portraiture highlights the ways in which artists and sitters use portraiture to reveal what happens when cultures collide. By analyzing portraiture, students will consider how cultural collisions are visualized from the nineteenth to twenty-first centuries. Students will explore the powerful contributions to the history and culture of the United States through portraiture.

Objectives: After completing this lesson, students will be better able to: 

  • Examine how modern and contemporary artists use portraiture to reveal aspects of a sitter’s individual, community/cultural, and national identity. 
  • Identify key components of a portrait and discuss what one can learn about the sitter through these components. 
  • Discuss the artistic choices that portrait artists make and consider how such decisions can reveal the artists’ viewpoints and also influence the viewers’ understanding of the sitters’ identity. 
  • Use the museum’s collection as a gateway to investigating and exploring of the visualization of colliding cultures.



Portraiture, Collisions, Harriet Tubman, Civil War, Stonewall, Roger Shimomura, Chief Joseph, Robert Rauschenberg, United Farm Workers

Nicole Vance


cats: good pets :)

jen stebbing

Smithsonian Social Studies Online: What happens when cultures collide? / Smithsonian Estudios Sociales en Línea: ¿Qué ocurre cuando dos culturas chocan?

This collection contains lesson plans and resources from across the Smithsonian to help students critically examine this essential question through multiple Social Studies content areas. 

Esta colección contiene planes de lecciones y recursos de todo el Smithsonian para ayudar a estudiantes a examinar críticamente esta esencial pregunta a través de múltiples areas de contenido en Estudios Sociales.

National Museum of American History


jen stebbing
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