Posts Tagged ‘Smithsonian’

The History Of Jell-O!

April 4th, 2019

 

It’s Thursday, April 4, 2019, and time for Social Sciences at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

Jell-O Gallery

(http://www.jellogallery.org/history.html)

Age Range: All (All grades; children with parental supervision)

 

The mere mention of Jell-O causes most people to giggle — but the silliness of Jell-O’s history is serious business.

Here are some more fun facts: Did you know that immigrants entering Ellis Island were served Jell-O as a welcome dish? Or that there were chocolate and cola flavored gelatins that were discontinued? Norman Rockwell and Maxfield Parrish created artwork depicting Jell-O. Hollywood movie-makers used Jell-O to create the effect of parting the Red Sea in the 1923 silent film “The Ten Commandments,” and the horse-of-a-different-color in “The Wizard of Oz” was sponged down with green Jell-O. Astronauts at space station Mir marked time in space with Jell-O. The Smithsonian Institute even proclaimed, “American History is Jell-O History!”

Jell-O makes history fun — but don’t be too surprised if everyone craves Jell-O after visiting the site. If so, use the recipes at the site to make some yummy concoctions with Jell-O. Have fun!

Virtual Tour of the Postal Museum

March 29th, 2019

 

It’s Friday, March 29, 2019, and time for a Virtual Field Trip at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

National Postal Museum

(postalmuseum.si.edu/visit/virtual-tour.html)

Age Range: 8-18 (Grades 3-12, with parental supervision)

 

Postal history opens a unique window into the past. It brings personal histories to life and offers a compelling avenue for study. The Smithsonian’s National Postal Museum provides educators with an interesting selection of classroom resources and materials that can be used online or downloaded, as well as an opportunity to explore the museum and its collections through virtual tours and online galleries

When you get to the site, click on the tour to see the 360 degree panoramas that lead you through the galleries of the museum: 

  • Moving the Mail
  • Stamp Gallery (Fire and Ice)
  • Alphabetilately
  • Mail Call
  • Binding the Nation
  • Postal Inspectors
  • Customers and Communities
  • Systems at Work

When you are through with your tour, check out the Collections, Exhibits, and Research links in the main menu bar. Learn about “Collection History”, “Collection Projects”, “Preservation” and more. Explore past, present and future exhibits to discover America’s postal history from colonial times to the present.

Also, don’t miss the Education and Activities links at the top. There are classroom resources and curriculum guides for such interesting topics as Owney the Dog, Victory Mail, and We Were There: Letters From the Battle Front.

With the wealth of information and educational materials available, this website will surely receive your stamp of approval.

Portrait of George Washington

February 23rd, 2019

 

It’s Saturday, February 23, 2019, and time for Art at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

George Washington – A National Treasure

(www.georgewashington.si.edu/index.html)

Age Range: 7-18 (Grades 2-12, with parental supervision)

 

Learn all about President George Washington with this website from the Smithsonian Portrait Gallery.

Using the full-length portrait, Lansdowne, by Gilbert Stuart as the focal point of this study, visitors can explore the interactive presentations and games to not only examine the portrait but discover interesting facts about George Washington and the time period in which he lived.

When arriving at the site, use the upper menu to navigate to your area of interest. Select from: 

  • The Portrait – Geared towards older students and adults, use the interactive portrait to examine it in detail from three different vantage points: symbolic, biographic, and artistic.
  • Kids – Solve clues to not only discover what is missing in the portrait but also learn interesting facts as to why the items may have been included in the painting. The kid section also includes: 
    • The Patriot Papers – interactive activities such as matching games, crossword puzzles, word searches and more as well as downloadable articles from The Patriot Papers published by the Office of Education at the National Portrait Gallery which include a student and teacher version of the publishing
    • Teacher Guide – Find extra activities and lessons plans to further enhance your studies here.
    • Family Guide – Discover great topical discussion ideas as well as interesting information.
    • Wallpaper – a couple of downloadable images of Washington for your desktop
  • Washington’s Life – Explore the life and times of George Washington with this timeline.
  • Exhibition – Learn more about the painting and its artist as well as try out a couple of samples of the traveling interactives.

This website provides a unique way to learn about the first president of the United States and a fun addition to your history studies.

Be a History Explorer

November 1st, 2018

 

It’s Thursday, November 1, 2018, and time for Social Sciences at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

Smithsonian’s History Explorer

(historyexplorer.si.edu/)

Age Range: All (All grades, children with parental supervision)

 

Explore American history with the hundreds of lesson plans, activities, interactives, media and much more available at this website from the Smithsonian National Museum of American History.

The homepage highlights featured topics, artifacts and resources. Visitors can use the search box on the right-hand side of the page to search for their topical interest which can easily be further refined by resource type, grade level, historical era, and/or cross-curricular connections. Once the list of resources populates, make your selection, review the information about the resource, then select the “Get Resource” button to access the material. Please note that some of the units bring you to an outside website while others are located on the Smithsonian site, so as always be sure to preview prior to allowing students to use this site. 

Visitors can also choose to browse content using the upper menu to locate resources by: 

  • Lessons & Activities – Search for specific lessons and activities to support your students’ learning.
  • Media – Explore relevant audio, video and interactive resources.
  • Museum Artifacts – Browse collections to use for object-based learning.
  • Themes – Dig deeper into resources focused on a major theme in American history including: 
    • A Nation We Build Together
    • American Experiments
    • Protest and Civic Action, the Civil Rights Movement
    • The American Revolution and World Wars
    • Presidential History, Politics and Voting
    • STEM Resources
    • Westward Expansion
    • Immigration
    • Hispanic Heritage Month
    • Teaching with Drama
    • Agriculture History
    • And more
  • Books – Check out the list of history related books to add to your reading list.
  • Teacher Resources – Find help for using the site and primary sources in teaching history as well as archived webinars and more.
  • Web Links – Examine additional links to other history websites.

Be sure to bookmark this website as it will be a valuable resource through all your American history studies.

Discover the History of the Lightbulb

October 18th, 2018

 

It’s Thursday, October 18, 2018, and time for Social Sciences at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

Lighting a Revolution

(americanhistory.si.edu/lighting/index.htm)

Age Range: 11-18 (Grades 6-12, with parental supervision)

 

Explore the history of the lightbulb with this web presentation from the Smithsonian National Museum of American History.

This site takes visitors through the steps involved in the process of the invention of the lightbulb by Thomas Edison in the 19th century and then examines the major developments made to lamps in the 20th century.

After reading through the introductory text on the home page, students can begin their exploration by selecting from the three “doors” on the page: 

  • Invention Factory: 19th Century Electric Lamps
  • Invention Factory: 20th Century Electric Lamps
  • Guest Lounge & Library

The “Invention Factory” sections are broken down again into the 5 steps of inventing: 

  • Store Room: Knowledge & Equipment for Inventors (Step 1: Preconditions) – Dig into what previously discovered technology and inventions help in the creation of the new product.
  • Laboratory: Caution Inventors at Work (Step 2: Invention) – Learn about the people, places, events, and discoveries of lighting inventors.
  • Marketing Department: Promotions for All Occasions (Step 3: Promotion) – Gain an understanding of the importance promoting an invention has in bringing new inventions to the public.
  • Competition: Inventors: Have Patents Out & Ready for Inspection (Step 4: Competition) – Discover the importance of competition in the world of inventions.
  • Consequences: Intended & Otherwise (Step 5: Consequences) – Examine the results of the invention of the lightbulb and its impact on history.

Each section presents concise information about the topic accompanied by exhibit images.

The “Guest Lounge & Library” provides visitors opportunities for further research by providing exhibit scripts and notes, a time-line photo gallery of lamp inventors, links to other informative sites about Thomas Edison and lighting, history, technology, and energy files with additional images and information relating to lighting including ink blotters, patents, the science behind electric lighting and lightbulbs, and significance of energy efficiency.

Add this site to your list of resources for history and inventor studies.

Virtual Tours of Six Villages in Vietnam

September 14th, 2018

 

It’s Friday, September 14, 2018, and time for a Virtual Field Trip at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

Mekong Lifeways

(folklife.si.edu/resources/mekong/Engframe.html)

Age Range: 11-18 (Grades 5-12, with parental supervision)

 

This site from the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage provides a set of online photo albums that present a virtual tour of traditional lifestyles of people in the Mekong Delta region of Vietnam.


The sister site describes a trip taken along the entire length of the Mekong River (not just Vietnam). This is also where you’ll find the coloring pages.

One tricky characteristic of today’s featured site is that the navigation controls change location from page to page. Here is a quick summary so that you will be able to get through the site without difficulty: 

On the first page, the introduction runs down the right-hand column, and you need to select a city from the six photos in the central column. Then, on each city’s main page, you need to scroll down to read the introduction at the bottom of the large center/right column, then select a photo archive from the left-hand column. Once inside each photo archive, you need to read the information at the bottom center of the page, then navigate using the thumbnails across the *top* of the screen. Don’t worry, it’s easier then it sounds.

Each photo comes with a short caption; together this montage gives you a little taste for the variety that exists here, and a bit of an idea of what makes each of these six cities special.

Challenge for older students: Try to practice your speed reading on the highly detailed descriptions that appear when you position your mouse over each photograph. (If you missed the description, don’t worry. Select a different photo and then return back right away to the one you were trying to read.)

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