Posts Tagged ‘Smithsonian’

History and Social Studies and More, Oh My!

September 29th, 2016

 

It’s Thursday, September 29, 2016, and time for Social Sciences at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

Kids.gov

(kids.usa.gov/index.shtml)

Age Range: 5-13 (Grades K-8, with parental supervision)

 

This sister website to the USA.gov website, designed especially for elementary and middle school students, serves as an internet gateway to educational information and services available through government agencies, schools, and educational organizations.

Using the navigation buttons at the top of the page, first decide your audience, Kids Grade K-5 or Teens Grade 6-8, then choose to:

  • Learn Stuff
  • Play Games
  • Watch Videos

This is where the fun begins. Choose from the suggestions in the scroll-able upper menu box or find the subject you are interested in by selecting it from the icons below the box. The icons will take you to another page broken down into topics. From here either browse through the list of linked websites or click the topical text link to be taken to the page of links.

All kinds of subjects are available, but we will focus on History. On the “Learn More” tab find great resources to learn about: 

  • American History
  • Constitution, Declaration of Independence and More
  • Groups and Cultures
  • Presidents
  • Time Periods and Eras
  • Wars

History games include: 

  • America by Air – Among other activities, take a virtual flight across America.
  • Colonial Williamsburg Kid’s Zone – Games that teach about life in colonial America
  • History and Culture – Smithsonian Education – a selection of games sponsored by the Smithsonian
  • And many more!

Watch videos about: 

  • Native American Indians
  • Martha Washington
  • Webcasts from the Library of Congress

(Note: While reviewing this site we found some links no longer took you directly to the right page, but adventurous researchers can dig a little on the site to locate what they need.)

Select the Teachers button in the top menu to find activities, worksheets, lesson plans and more. The Parents page provides parental resources for a subject.

This is definitely a bookmark-worthy site to come back time and again for all your subjects.

Tour Our Ocean Planet

August 12th, 2016

 

It’s Friday, August 12, 2016, and time for a Virtual Field Trip at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

Ocean Planet

(seawifs.gsfc.nasa.gov/ocean_planet_scripts/tour.pl?sel=211+214+242+249+222+378+225+386+215+269+208+219+218&page=&cs=59753)

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

 

Today’s website allows you to take a virtual tour of the Smithsonian’s acclaimed exhibit, Ocean Planet. Using audio and visual technology along with beautiful graphs, charts, photographs and illustrations you can explore and examine Earth’s oceans and the interconnectedness of them to every habitat and creature worldwide. Designed for a general audience, younger children will need some help with navigation.

When you get to the site you will see a menu bar at the top of your screen. Directly below the menu are the numbers 1-13 – and below the numbers is a very brief introduction, links to sounds of the sea, and a link to the “floor plan” that allows you to see any part of this amazing exhibit. 

Note: As the links on this site do occasionally change, you might encounter an error message. If you do, just select “Please request your tour again,” then select “Ocean Planet Preview Tour” from the menu.

There is an assortment of virtual tours of the various segments of this exhibit. We have chosen to feature the Curator’s Preview Tour because it provides an overview of what is available to you in the real-time exhibit – most of which you can explore virtually. Once you take this tour, you will undoubtedly want to bookmark the site and return to explore the different galleries in the exhibit thoroughly.

So, from the landing page just click on the “next” button or the number “2” to start the tour. Each successive page describes briefly a gallery or section of the Ocean Planet exhibit. You will see a photo of the gallery, a brief description and a clickable menu that takes you to each part of that gallery where you can learn all about subjects like: 

  • Oceanography
  • Marine Biodiversity
  • Mariana Trench
  • Ocean Depths
  • Seafaring Communities Worldwide
  • Marine Habitat Destruction
  • Marine Scientist Biographies

You’ll also see the “cafeteria menu” but just click past it to continue with what’s available at the website. Once you’ve seen what’s available, use the “Floorplan” icon to return to any section that interests you and immerse yourself in ocean knowledge.

Explore Civil War Collections at the Smithsonian

July 8th, 2016

 

It’s Friday, July 8, 2016, and time for a Virtual Field Trip at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

CivilWar@Smithsonian

(www.civilwar.si.edu/home.html)

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

 

Explore the artifacts and memorabilia from the Civil War era with this website from the Smithsonian Institution and produced by the National Portrait Gallery.

Select from the following menu items: 

  • Collections – Through images and text, examine the items and portraits in the following collections: 
    • Slavery and Abolition
    • Abraham Lincoln
    • First Blood
    • Soldiering
    • Weapons
    • Leaders
    • Cavalries
    • Navies
    • Life and Culture
    • Appomattox
    • Winslow Homer
    • Matthew Brady
  • Timeline – Learn about the events of the Civil War from 1859-1865 through this textural timeline.
  • Resources – Expand on your studies of the collections with additional links and book recommendations.

This tour will make a wonderful supplement to your American history studies.

News Literacy Lessons, Games, & Resources

June 8th, 2016

 

It’s Wednesday, June 8, 2016, and time for Language Arts at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

Newseum

(www.newseum.org/todaysfrontpages/)

Age Range: 9-18 (Grades 4-12, with parental supervision)

 

This website is a companion to the Newseum in Washington D.C. What’s a “Newseum”? It’s a real museum (adjacent to the Smithsonian museums) with galleries, theaters, and exhibits “that offer five centuries of news history with up-to-the-second technology in hands-on exhibits.”

It takes visitors behind the scenes to experience how and why news is made. This website offers free lessons and resources to promote language arts, social sciences, critical thinking, and civic responsibility.

The website provides an overview of the Newseum and it’s exhibits, including “Today’s Front Pages” that displays the front pages of daily newspapers worldwide in their original, unedited form. It’s a great way to get an idea of how news is featured and disseminated in any given country.

When you get to the site – you’ll see icon images of “Today’s Front Pages” from newspapers in North America (including every state in the USA), Asia, Caribbean, Europe, Middle East, Oceania, South America, and Africa. Click on any one and the page gets larger so can read the entire front page.

The idea here is that reading worldwide headlines and front page stories may springboard learning and discussion of news events, history, journalism, and more.

When you are through reading the newspaper front pages, use the menu at the top of page to explore the rest of the site including: 

  • Education 
  • Exhibits
  • And more!

This is a great way to combine language arts with social sciences.

National Anthem Day

March 3rd, 2016

 

It’s Thursday, March 3, 2016, and time for Social Sciences at ClickSchooling!

 

Recommended Website:

The Star-Spangled Banner

(amhistory.si.edu/starspangledbanner/default.aspx)

Age Range: 5-13 (Grades K-8, with parental supervision)

 

“The Star-Spangled Banner” became the United States’ National Anthem on March 3, 1931. Explore the legacy of this song with this website from the Smithsonian National Museum of History.

There are a few different ways to navigate around the website. After reading the brief overview on the home page you can select the “Begin with The War of 1812” image link at the bottom of the text and proceed through the pages in sequence. Or, if you would rather explore one of the four topics, they can be chosen from the upper menu: 

  • War – Learn about the War of 1812.
  • Flag – Explore the history of the American flag known as The Star-Spangled Banner.
  • Song – Discover the lyrics, composer, and music of “The Star-Spangled Banner.”
  • Legacy – Dig into the symbols of this nation, the changes made to the flag, and rules and rituals associated with it.

Throughout the pages of this website are interactive features to help commit to memory what has been learned and to examine the flag and song more closely. These features can also be accessed either form the “Interact” link in the menu bar or from the home page and include: 

  • Collect – Collect stars by answering questions at the bottom of the pages. When all the stars are collected, students can print out a certificate.
  • Explore – Get up close to The Star-Spangled Banner with this interactive that allows you to zoom into different sections of the flag and learn about what is found.
  • Sing – Watch and sing-a-long with videos of people singing the national anthem.
  • Share – A prompt to tell what the American flag stands for and what it means to you.

Through brief texts and colorful images, this is a great place to add to your American history studies.

George Washington – A National Treasure

February 25th, 2016

 

It’s Thursday, February 25, 2016, and time for Social Sciences 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.

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