In this lesson, students will examine the difference between history and memory by debating the legacy of Benedict Arnold. Using video clips of an actor playing Arnold, students are invited to debate his actions and determine how history should remember him.
In this lesson, students will examine the difference between history and memory by debating the legacy of John Brown. Using video clips of an actor playing Brown, students are invited to debate his actions and determine how history should remember him. The video segments are also avai
This object-based learning activity revolves around an 1898 Standard Voting Machine, the fight against voting fraud and the extension of voting rights in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Students will learn how voting technology was used to democratize the voting process in the
Do you live near the water? There is probably a body of water closer than you think! In this activity, students will use Google Maps to first find their school, and then locate and learn about the closest body of water to their school. Included in an OurStory module entitled Li
Take a close look at two newspaper articles and a children's book telling the story of an escaped slave-compare the stories they tell to uncover the perspectives they represent. Part of an OurStory module entitled Full Steam to Freedom, this activity includes transcripts of two Civil War
How can the Statue of Liberty be used in a timeline? Take a close look at an object made by an immigrant, then tell your family or cultural stories through a timeline. Part of an OurStory module entitled Coming to America, this activity includes a guided exploration of a museum artifact,
In this activity, children pretend to be an American during 1963 and decide whether or not to join the March on Washington. Children base their choice on information gathered through guided observation of a handbill from the march. Included in an OurStory module from Smithsonian's National Museum
What can we learn by studying a buffalo hide painting? In this activity, students will learn about the culture of the Plains Indians by determining the meaning of stories told on a buffalo hide painting and compare their interpretations to that of a Smithsonian historian. This activity is meant t
In this interactive website, students explore the role buffaloes played in the lives of Native Americans of the northern Plains. The website includes: online interactives, printable activities and a map of the Plain Indians, information about the art of buffalo hide paintings, a teacher's guide a
Explore a local train-related site with safety and discussion tips for kids and families. Part of an OurStory module entitled All Aboard the Train!, this activity includes strategies for selecting a train-related field trip in your area (such as train stations, train tracks, or train mus
Drawing on Takaki's vast array of primary sources, and staying true to his own words whenever possible, A Different Mirror for Young People brings ethnic history alive through the words of people, including teenagers, who recorded their experiences in letters, diaries, and poems. Like Zinn's A Peopl
Japanese Americans reflect on their years spent in internment camps as children or young adults. They discuss the process of being forced from their homes, and their ability to make the prisons more livable despite oppressive conditions.