A Variety of Resources for Educators

Today’s post comes from Chelsea Tremblay, former social media intern in our Education and Public Programs division.

On November 13, we hosted our first Educators’ Open House. Educators from various grade levels came to learn what the National Archives has to offer. Snacks were served, laughs were had, and resources were shared!

Here are just some of our programs that we featured:

Distance Learning

Videoconferences and webinars are a great way to utilize our resources without having to travel. Educators' Open House

We offer both videoconferences for students and professional development webinars for educators. Visit our website to learn more and request programs.

The Constitution-In-Action Learning Lab

This fun, hands-on activity available for student field trips takes place in our replica “stacks” (where documents are stored) and research rooms. Groups of 12-36 participants can sign up for this simulation with an in-depth focus on the U.S. Constitution.

Educators' Open House

Student groups focus on different parts of the Constitution while helping the president’s “press secretary” organize a mock Constitution-in-Action campaign. As “archivists” and “researchers,” they must demonstrate why the Constitution is important and how it has been influential throughout history.

The lab is free but a reservation is required. Visit our website for more information.

Bill of Rights eBook and iPad App

The Center for Legislative Archives, part of the National Archives, launched a free mobile app and eBook called Congress Creates the Bill of Rights, in honor of the 225th anniversary of the Bill of Rights’ proposal, on Constitution Day (September 17). Both describe the tedious process of writing and agreeing upon the first 10 Constitutional Amendments, and why they were necessary.

Educators at Open HouseThe eBook and app are available for free at the iTunes store and the webpage of the Center for Legislative Archives.

Online Resources

DocsTeach — Our online tool for teaching with documents from the National Archives offers tools for building online activities using digitized primary sources. An entire section of this website is dedicated to National History Day. Other special DocsTeach Pages can be found on our website.Founders Online

Founders Online — Our searchable archive of the correspondence and other writings of six of the Founding Fathers.

Our main online catalog — Our database provides the most expansive access to our millions of digitized primary sources.

Exhibits

During the Open House, we extended our museum’s exhibit hours so that visitors could see the Declaration of Independence, Constitution, Bill of Rights and our permanent and temporary exhibits. You can visit them yourself seven days a week, 10 a.m.–5:30 p.m. (except Thanksgiving Day & Christmas Day).

Check out images from our Open House on Flickr and keep your eyes peeled for our fall 2015 Educators’ Open House!

 

The Educators’ Open House was made possible in part by the Foundation for the National Archives through the support of the William Randolph Hearst Foundation.

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Primary Sources With Some Help from Historypin

Today’s post comes from Kris Jarosik, education specialist at the National Archives at Chicago.

When funds for field trips are sparse or non-existent, turn to the next best thing – combining primary sources and geography using technology.Historypin app screenshot

During a recent teacher workshop, we partnered with the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County and used a website and app called Historypin to help teachers learn about the origins of the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), a New Deal program, and the lasting impact in our community.

Historypin brings you out into a community and allows you to see changes in the landscape with primary sources, such as photographs, overlaid or “pinned” on Google maps.

You can do the same for your students, whether it’s creating your own Historypin tour or collection, or using pre-existing samples.

Chicago CCC Workshop ParticipantsIn the case of our workshop, we decided on a local topic that would benefit from a visual treatment to help students learn about change over time and cause and effect. The remnants of the McDowell Grove CCC camp offered lessons not only about the scope of this New Deal program, but also about changing values in natural resource management (the conservation movement and today’s environmentalists).

With these objectives in mind, we identified historical photographs from the National Archives, the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County, and other local repositories. Scanning these images, uploading to Historypin, and crafting captions came next.  Historypin has created a downloadable guide and a set of “how to” video clips on YouTube to help.  We used a Historypin collection for our McDowell Grove exploration since most of the camp remains are not currently available on Google Street View.

Taking a tour and viewing historic photographs on-site with mobile devices and the Historypin app can allow you to see something like in these screenshots captured by one of the teachers who participated in our workshop.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

But if on-site, smartphone traversing is not feasible, head to the Historypin web site and have your students explore inside.  The tour option works exceptionally well for a computer experience.  For example, have students learn about the tumultuous 1960s with the National Archives’ 1968 Democratic National Convention in Chicago tour.

Thousands of cultural institutions and individuals around the world, including the National Archives and the Forest Preserve District of Du Page County, have Historypin profiles with tours and collections.  Have fun and help your students connect with history by using primary sources and geography to travel back to the past.

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National Archives Documents in New iPad App–The New Immigrants: NYC 1880-1924

The New Immigrants: NYC 1880-1924

Over thirty National Archives documents are part of a free educational app for the iPad called the New Immigrants: NYC 1880-1924. Created by the New York City Department of Education (via app developer Vanguard Direct), the app includes photographs, written documents, graphs and charts from the National Archives related to the topic of New York City immigration near the turn of the 20th century.

In addition to the 100+ images from National Archives, the app brings together primary sources from the Museum of the City of New York, the Lower East Side Tenement Museum, and the Museum of Jewish Heritage—a Living Memorial to the Holocaust.     Each partner provided about 25 documents from their collections that they felt would help students and teachers at all levels (Elementary, Middle, and High School) engage in the study of immigration.  Educators from these institutions then met with teachers and staff from across the five boroughs of New York City for 2 days at the National Archives to begin the process of analyzing, sorting, and creating questions for these primary sources.

In New York City public schools, immigration is taught during 4th grade, 8th grade and 11th grade units of US History.  While the New Immigrant’s intended audience are those specific classrooms, the diverse collection of primary sources provides teachers, students, and history buffs in general with resources that could help foster a deeper understanding of this complex topic. The app could be used by teachers to engage students in a dynamic class discussion, by students to create their own collections or respond to an assignment, or by the general public to intrigue them to learn more about some of the stories behind these images.

The New Immigrants: NYC 1880-1924 Themes

Documents are organized into topic areas that touch on important themes in teaching immigration–including the Migration Process, Tenement Life, and Nativism.

The New Immigrants: NYC 1880-1924 The Migration Process

A quick swipe of a finger allows the user to browse thumbnails of related documents.  For example, in the section titled “Earning a Living,” photographs of children working in tenements, an article from the Brooklyn Standard Union about the role of immigrants in certain industries, and a protest following the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire are available.

The New Immigrants: NYC 1880-1924 Earning a Living

Click on any of these documents thumbnails, and a document detail page loads providing background information about the document.  On this page, users can also zoom in and crop the document, find text-based questions for a variety of grade levels and even add the document to their own collections.  The document detail page also provides Tags that link to other related documents. For example, the Passenger arrival manifest of the SS Nevada, the first ship processed at Ellis Island on January 1, 1892, is tagged with terms such as Arrival, Ellis Island, and Push-Pull Factors.

New Immigrants Document Detail

For teachers using the app, each document has several text-dependent questions that require students to analyze and look deep within the document for answers.  With the photograph of demonstration protesting and mourning the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire, questions tiered for all grades are provided.

Photo Oct 27, 4 52 31 PMJust a quick tap on the plus sign on the document details page allows teachers and students to create their own collections of related documents.  These collections can then be explored by within the app itself or shared via email with others (including non-iPad users) as a downloadable PDF.  For example, users could create and share a collection of just the National Archives documents included within the app to have their students gain a better sense of the changing Federal role in immigration during this time period.

The New Immigrants Collections

For teachers that want their students to explore the topic of immigration through a deeper Document Based Question (DBQ), several are provided for each grade level that focus on a specific theme in the study of immigration.  For each of these DBQs, related historical thinking skill standards and Common Core State Standards strands are provided.  In the performance task designed for 8th graders titled “The Immigrant Experience on New York’s Lower East Side”, students are given 10 documents from the collection and are tasked to write a newspaper article that cites specific evidence from at least four of these documents to explain the opportunities and challenges of the immigrant experience.

The New Immigrants: Teaching ImmigationEach activity also includes a short “Ken Burns” style documentary narrated by Historian Edward T. O’Donnell to provide some historical context and educational scaffolding to the primary source documents.

The New Immigrants: Teaching Immigration

 

Reviews and comments in iTunes for the app have been overwhelmingly positive with 23 five star reviews.  User nwonderful resource for teachers, students and history buffs. It’s amazing to have all of these primary documents literally at your fingertips.”  And Missbiss1980 called it an “inspiring teacher resource” that led her to develop a new project for her students to analyze primary sources and create documentaries using iMovie.

Download it today!: The New Immigrants: NYC 1880-1924 on the App Store on iTunes.

 

 

 

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Voting Rights Today Contest for Texas 12th Graders

The LBJ Foundation invites all 12th-grade Texas students to enter the 2015 “Voting Rights Today” Essay and Documentary Contest to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Voting Rights Act.

The focus of this year’s essay and documentary contest is “Voting Rights Today.” The Voting Rights Act was passed as a result of the widespread disenfranchisement of countless Americans who were denied the right to vote based on their race, gender, or class. This act enforced the right to vote nationwide guaranteed by the fifteenth and nineteenth amendments.

Submissions will be accepted January 1–26, 2015.

Prizes include:

  • $2,500 first place award, plus travel for the winner and his/her parent to attend the award ceremony in April 2015
  • $1,000 second place award
  • $1,000 award to first place student’s sponsoring teacher, plus travel to attend award ceremony

For full contest details, including eligibility and requirements, visit the LBJ Library’s Voting Rights Today page.

Download the 2015 Voting Rights Today Contest Flier (PDF).

Flier2015_Page_1

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December Education Programs

Today’s post comes from Renee Rhodes, social media intern in our Education and Public Programs division.

The holidays are quickly approaching, followed closely by the end of the year. But we still have more great workshops to offer before 2014 closes. Check out some of the events hosted by National Archives and Presidential Library locations around the country in December. Have a happy holiday season!

Constitution Day Family Activities

 

(Online) VGo Robot “Millie” Tours

  • Remotely control a tour of The George Bush Presidential Library World War II exhibit by driving VGO Robot “Millie,” named after the First Dog of the 41st Bush Administration. Free 45-minute virtual tours with an Education Volunteer are available Tuesdays and Wednesdays, with prior registration.

(Online & College Station, TX) “The Wizard of Oz is in You: Stand Up for Yourself!” – Tuesday, December 2, 10:30 – 11:30 am & 12:30 – 1:30 pm CT

  • Two free programs via distance learning or onsite from the George Bush Presidential Library and Museum. For grades 4–8 and adult learners, with author and storyteller Barbara Hailey, to learn how to rely on “The Wizard of Oz” strengths to promote self-esteem and prevent bullying. Free online distance learning (video-conference, live stream or recording) registration at www.connect2texas.net/bushlibrary41.

(Online) National History Day Category Exploration Google Hangout – December 2, 6 pm ET

  • Explore categories for projects online with the National History Day organization and the National Archives.

(Washington, DC) Making Their Mark Adult Workshop Series: Calligraphy Basics – December 3, 5:30 – 7:30 pm

  • Learn the basics of calligraphy just in time for the holidays in the final workshop in conjunction with the Making Their Mark exhibit at the National Archives Museum.

(Simi Valley, CA) Second Annual Student Film Festival at the Reagan Presidential Library– December 3, 7 pm

  • Celebrate film at this showcase of student-created documentaries on the American Presidency. Representatives from Hollywood Studios will present winning students with awards at this red carpet event. Bring the entire family! Contact Reaganeducation@nara.gov

(Chicago, IL) They Came From…Using Immigration Records – Saturday, December 13, 9:30 – 11:30 am

  • Explore historic records from the National Archives related to the arrival and assimilation of immigrants that would be useful in teaching the subject. Learn more and register.

(Atlanta, GA) American History for Home Schoolers – Wednesday, December 17

  • Bring your home schoolers to the National Archives at Atlanta for “A Very Uncivil Affair: A Documentary History of the Civil War” from 10 am – noon and “Parallel Paths—Part I: Reconstruction to the Beginnings of Jim Crow: from 1 – 3 pm. Curriculum level is appropriate for 8th through 12th grade. Pre-registration is not required but an RSVP prior to each monthly event is appreciated. There is no cost to attend. Students under the age of 14 must be accompanied by a parent.

(Online) Get Ready for 2015 with Fun Activities & Free National Archives Documents – December 30, 8:30 pm ET

  • Join this free professional development webinar to prepare for 2015.

(Washington, DC) Boeing Learning Center – Mondays – Saturdays, 10 am – 3 pm

(Online) Distance Learning

 

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The Importance of Treaties for Teaching American Indian History

Spotted Tail, Chief of the Brule Sioux 1880.

Sinte Galeska, ca. 1880, also known as Spotted Tail, a chief of the Bruleton, band of the Oglala Sioux, was one of the signers of the Fort Laramie Treaty.

American Indian Treaties can be an extremely important starting point for teaching the history of a Native American tribe or tribes from a particular area of the United States.

These historic documents mark the beginning of a tribe’s transition from Sovereign Nation, with it’s own independent government and land base, to a “domestic, dependent, Nation” (Supreme Court 1831).   Over time, these “dependent” Nations were sometimes further reduced to “confederations” where from just a few to twenty or more separate tribes, bands, and communities were moved into one reservation area together and treated as one governmental entity.

As the result of a request for the National Archives to loan eight original treaties to the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington, D.C. for their newly opened Nation to Nation Exhibit, we began digitizing Native American treaties to bring more to the public through the National Archives Online Catalog and DocsTeach.  On both DocsTeach and the Nation to Nation exhibit webpage, type-written transcriptions are included to make it easy for students to study the contents of these handwritten documents while still being able to see the original documents in color.

In addition, we’ve prepared the first of a series of DocsTeach teaching activities related to these treaties, entitled Treaties and Treaty Making. It can help teachers explain, in a simple way, the concept of treaty making between governments and the original sovereignty and independent nature of Native American tribes.  More DocsTeach activities will be added in the near future to further illustrate these concepts and to provide easy materials for classroom use.

American Indian Treaties currently available on DocsTeach include:

* 1790 – Treaty of Peace and Friendship between the United States of America and the Creek Nation of Indians Signed at New York, 8/7/1790.

* 1794 – Treaty between the United States of America and the Tribes of Indians Called the Six Nations, 11/11/1794.

* 1795 – Treaty of Greenville, August 3, 1795 (Ratified Indian Treaty #23, 7 STAT 49), between the Wyandot, Delaware, Shawnee, Ottawa, Chippewa, Potawatomie, Miami, Eel River, Wea, Kickapoo, Piankashaw, and Kaskaskia Tribes and signed by “Mad” Anthony Wayne, that ended the Indian War on the Northwestern Frontier, commonly called “Wayne’s War, 8/3/1795.

1804 Sac and Fox Treaty

1804 Sac and Fox Treaty

* 1804 – Treaty between the United States Government and the Sauk and Fox Indians on November 11, 1804. (Ratified Indian Treaty #43, 7 STAT 84)

* 1807 – Treaty between the Ottawa, Chippewa, Wyandot, and Potawatomi Indians, 11/17/1807.

* 1809 – Treaty between the United States and the Delaware, Potawatomi, Miami and Eel River Tribes of Indians at Fort Wayne, Indiana, 9/30/1809.

* 1835 – Cherokee Treaty at New Echota, Georgia, December 29, 1835 (Ratified Indian Treaty)

* 1836 – Treaty between the United States and the Potawatomi Indians at Yellow River, Indiana, 8/5/1836.

* 1851 – Treaty between the United States and the Sioux, Cheyenne, Arapaho, Crow, Assiniboin, Gros Ventre, Madan and Arikara Indians at Fort Laramie, Indian Territory, 9/17/1851.

* 1854 – Treaty between the United States and the Nisqualli, Puyallup and Other Indians at Medicine Creek, Washington Territory 12/26/1854.

* 1865 – Treaty of Little Arkansas River, October 14, 1865 (Ratified Indian Treaties #341, 14 STAT 703) between the U.S. and Arapahoe and Cheyenne Indians (Black Kettle Band) granting lands in reparation for the Sand Creek Massacre, 11/29/1964.

* 1868 – Fort Laramie Treaty, 4/29/1868.

* 1868 – Treaty between the United States Government and the Navajo Indians signed at Fort Sumner, New Mexico Territory on June 1, 1868. (Ratified Indian Treaty #372, 15 STAT 667)

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See you at NCSS!

The National Council for the Social Studies Annual Conference starts next week in Boston.

You can catch up with us at several events to hear what’s new at the National Archives and Presidential Libraries.

John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston

NLJFK 93-C52-29: John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston, 15 November 1993

Pre-Conference Clinic:

Thurs, 11/20, 9 am — “One Tumultuous Year! 1963: The Struggle for Civil Rights” at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum

Tour:

Fri, 11/21, 11:30 am — Guided tour of the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, including special exhibit “To the Brink: JFK and the Cuban Missile Crisis”

 

Conference Sessions:

Sammy the Eagle

Meet Sammy the Eagle, National Archives ambassador who teaches K–2 students about national symbols, in our interactive videoconferencing session.

Fri, 11/21, 10:05 am — Teaching the C3 Framework: A Guide to Inquiry-Based Instruction in the Social Studies with Chris Zarr of the National Archives at New York City and Kris Jarosik of the National Archives at Chicago, who will take part in the panel discussion

Fri, 11/21, 1 pm — Explore the National Archives from Your Classroom with Interactive Videoconferencing (IVC) with Jenny Sweeney of the National Archives at Fort Worth and Mickey Ebert of the National Archives at Kansas City

Fri, 11/21, 4:15 pm — Prequel to Independence: The Shot Heard round the World with Annie Davis of the National Archives at Boston

Fri, 11/21, 4:15 pm — Voices from the Past: Introducing Historical Letters to Elementary Students with Sam Rubin and Esther Kohn of the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum

Sat, 11/22, 8 am — You’re the Curator: Creating a Historical Exhibit Using Multiple Literacies with Mira Cohen of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library

Sat, 11/22, 10:10 am — Investigating the Arts as a Civic Language with Alyssa Liles-Amponsah of the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum

Sat, 11/22, 3:35 pm — Prioritizing the Federal Budget: A Kennedy Library Simulation for Students with Nina Tisch of the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum

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Reminder: Educators’ Open House

For those of you in the DC area, please join us at our Educators’ Open House on Thursday, November 13 from 5:30–7:30 pm at the National Archives Museum in Washington, D.C.

Come spend the evening and find out more about what we offer for you and your classroom!

No pre-registration is required. Light refreshments will be served. Please bring your colleagues along!

Ed Open House flyer 2014

NARA Educators’ Open House flyer 2014–Download and Print

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Profile in Courage Essay Contest

Today’s post comes from Esther Kohn, education specialist at the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation.

The John F. Kennedy Library Foundation invites U.S. high school students to write an essay on an act of political courage by a U.S. elected official who served during or after 1956. The deadline for submissions to the Profile in Courage Essay Contest is January 5, 2015.Profiles in Courage Paperback Edition

In his 1956 book Profiles in Courage, John F. Kennedy recounted the stories of eight U.S. senators who faced dire consequences for standing up for the public good. Ostracized, rejected by voters, and even physically attacked, the elected officials in Kennedy’s Pulitzer prize-winning book put politics aside to do what they believed was right for the country.

A “Profile in Courage” essay is a carefully researched recounting of a story: the story of how an elected official risked his or her career to take a stand based on the dictates of the public good, rather than the dictates of polls, interest groups, or even constituents. The contest challenges high school students to discover new “profiles in courage,” and to research and write about acts of political courage that occurred after the 1956 publication of Kennedy’s Profiles in Courage.

The Profile in Courage Essay Contest requires young people today to grapple with big ideas:  How did Kennedy define political courage? Which public figures have demonstrated political courage? Which local, state, and national elected officials have risked their careers to take a stand for what is right?

Visit the John F. Kennedy Library website for contest information, eligibility and requirements, prize information, judging criteria, curriculum ideas, past winning essays, and more.

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New Resources for Teaching the History of Native America

Have you ever wondered where to look for Native American research materials for yourself or your students?  Do you sometimes need an interesting activity to help you engage your students in the history of Indigenous America?

This year we’ve been developing material specifically for you!

Researching American Indians Page

American Indian Nations in the United States were originally independent of the Federal government and treated as foreign nations.  (Until 1823, first the English and then the American governments even required anyone passing over Native American territory to acquire a passport.)

This changed when, in 1831, Justice John Marshall1 declared American Indian communities to thereafter be treated as “domestic, dependent, Nations.”  This placed tribal jurisdiction directly under the U.S. Government but not subject to state, county, or territorial governments.  Because of this unique relationship to the Federal Government, thousands upon thousands of important records are held by the National Archives (whose job it is to preserve permanently valuable records of the Federal Government) relating to American Indians.  These documents, photographs, and other primary sources are scattered throughout the records of over 90 different federal agencies, but the majority are in the records of the Bureau of Indian Affairs.

For the past 18 months, many archivists, exhibit specialists and educators at the National Archives have been writing instructional material to help lead you to documents specifically related to these records.  Within the last month, we’ve created new pages to help you and your students find materials related to American Indians both in our main online catalog and in person at National Archives research facilities.

Photograph of Navajo Indian Code Talkers Henry Bake and George Kirk, 12/1943

Photograph of Navajo Indian Code Talkers Henry Bake and George Kirk, 12/1943

We share interesting articles about a wealth of American Indian subjects, such as:

We include resources and information for K-12 teachers and students as well as special pages of instruction for undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate students.

Indian Nations vs. Settlers on the American Frontier

The K-12 page describes and leads students and teachers to specialized pages on DocsTeach.org. This DocsTeach activity, to use in class or as homework, can be found at http://docsteach.org/activities/12791/detail

In addition to instructional material, a special list can help you navigate the extremely complicated process of locating Bureau of Indian Affairs records for tribes within a specific state.  And you can even locate records from various Bureau of Indian Affairs’ boarding and day schools.

General view of buildings, Rocky Boy Agency, Montana Chippewa, 1936

General view of buildings, Rocky Boy Agency, Montana Chippewa, 1936

We haven’t yet included a list leading to records for particular Indian tribes, but we hope to in the near future.

 

 

1 U.S. Supreme Court, Cherokee Nation v Georgia (1831).  

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