Posts Tagged ‘Smithsonian’

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


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.

Smithsonian Museum of Natural History Tour

February 19th, 2016


It’s Friday, February 19, 2016, and time for a Virtual Field Trip at ClickSchooling!


Recommended Website:

Smithsonian Museum of Natural History


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


Browse through the exhibition halls of the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History from the comfort of your home with this website.

The interactive tours provide 360° panoramic images of the exhibits. These tours are available for both home computer or mobile device. Visitors can also select their version from the sidebar menu. After selecting your preferred version and beginning your tour, learn how to navigate the site by selecting question mark icon. Locate camera icons throughout your tours to get an even closer look at specific items. Exhibits include: 

  • First Floor
    • Rotunda
    • Mammal Hall
    • Human Origins
    • Ocean Hall
    • Discovery Room
    • African Cultures
    • Ice Age
    • Ancient Seas
    • Dinosaurs
    • Fossil Mammals
    • Fossil Plants
    • Early Life
  • Second Floor
    • Written in Bone
    • Egyptian Mummies
    • Bones
    • Insect zoo
    • Butterflies and Plants
    • Geology, Gems & Minerals
    • Korea Gallery

Visit the ground floor to see past exhibits such as: 

  • Western Cultures
  • Soil
  • Orchids
  • Rastafari
  • Coral Reef Crochet
  • Cyprus

There is so much to see and discover that you will want to bookmark this virtual tour to come back to time after time.

Smithsonian Bicycle Collection & Extras

June 26th, 2015


It’s Friday, June 26, 2015, and time for a Virtual Field Trip at ClickSchooling!


Recommended Website:


Smithsonian Bicycle Collection



Age Range: All (children with parental supervision)


Part of the larger America on the Move collection at the National Museum of American History, Behring Center, in Washington, D.C., this portion of the website shares the history of bicycles through informative text and interesting pictures.
When arriving at the link above read a brief description of the collection, then use the “Table of Contents” drop down menu in the upper right to navigate through time. Select from: 
  • Introduction to the Smithsonian Bicycle Collection
  • The Development of the Bicycle
  • Bicycle History from the late 19th century
  • The collection, 1818-1869
  • The collection, about 1875-1881
  • The collection, 1883-1886
  • The collection, 1887-1891
  • The collection 1896-1927
  • The collection, 1935-1965
When arriving at the collection pages, visitors can select the images of the bicycles to learn more details about the bike and its history. Use the link on the left hand side bar to return to the collection of images.

After you are finished checking out all the bicycles in the online exhibit, jump over to the British Council Film Collection to step back in time as you watch the 1945 short film, “How a Bicycle is Made“.

Native Words, Native Warriors

December 4th, 2014


It’s Thursday, December 4, 2014, and time for Social Sciences at ClickSchooling!


Recommended Website:


Native Words, Native Warriors


Age Range: 11-17 (Grades 6-12, with parental supervision)


American Indian “Code Talkers” contributed significantly to the war efforts of World War I and World War II. This website, a companion to the Smithsonian Institution exhibition, Native Words, Native Warriors, provides an in-depth lesson plan that explores the lives of Code Talkers.
When arriving at the link above, you are presented with an Overview of the Website that provides a brief description of what will be covered in this unit. Using the upper navigation bar, you may choose to work through the unit in a “Text-Only” version, but many students may prefer the Flash Version (link located at the end of the navigation bar.) In the Flash version, audio and images work together to present information along with additional text. Listen to real Code Talkers tell their stories throughout the presentation. Use the upper navigation on the flash page to move through the chapters, which include: 
  • Introduction: Code Talkers
  • Languages: Living the Culture
  • Boarding Schools: Struggling with Cultural Repression
  • Code Talking: Intelligence and Bravery
  • Coming Home: Strength through Culture
  • Survival: Hard Times and Racism
  • Recognition: Medals and Praise
As you work through the presentation, “code” words in the native language with the English translations are presented throughout. At the end of each chapter, there is an online workbook activity that students can do then print out for their records or thought-provoking questions to encourage further discussion. In the Code Talking chapter, students will use the Navajo’s Code Talker Dictionary online to write coded messages.

Visit the Gallery by selecting the link on the right hand side of the presentation window to view over 170 images.

You can always return to the text version of the chapters or return to the lesson plan by selecting the links under the presentation window. You may also wish to check out the Resources list for further study.

This website provides thorough and interesting insight into the world of Code Talkers.

National Zoo’s AnimalCams!

May 23rd, 2014


It’s Friday, May 23, 2014, and time for a Virtual Field Trip at ClickSchooling!


Recommended Website:


Smithsonian National Zoo: AnimalCams


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


Take a virtual field trip to the Smithsonian National Zoological Park where you can see many animal exhibits streamed live through web cams! When you get to the site you’ll see a menu of WEB CAM exhibits that include:

  • Asian small-clawed otter
  • Clouded leopard
  • Fishing Cat
  • Lion cub
  • Microscope cam
  • Naked mole-rat
  • Orangutan
  • Panda Bear

Click on any one and a new page opens. You may have to scroll down the page slightly to find the screen where you can watch the live footage. Sometimes you can see the animals quite clearly, and other times they are out of camera range. Remember that the Smithsonian National Zoo is on Eastern Standard Time – so if you visit after sundown and before sunrise Eastern time, you may see nothing but a dark screen.

In addition to viewing the web cams, you’ll find “Fact Sheets” and “Photo Galleries” that you can explore to learn more about the animals featured on these web cams.

Bookmark this site so you can return often!

Postal History

April 3rd, 2014


It’s Thursday, April 3, 2014, and time for Social Sciences at ClickSchooling!


Recommended Website:


Smithsonian National Postal Museum


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 lesson plans 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 arriving at the site, the sidebar navigation offers the following destinations, each with wonderful historical educational opportunities: 

  • About the Museum
    • Take a 360° tour of the museum in the “Virtual Tour”
    • Visit the “Ford Education Center” to play educational games
    • Watch a video and learn the “History of the National Postal Museum”
    • Examine fascinating artifacts through the “Object of the Month”
  • Exhibits
    • Explore past, present and future exhibits to discover America’s postal history from colonial times to the present.
  • Collection
    • Delve into the world of philately and objects of postal operations with the “Arago Online Collection Database”. Visitors can even create their own digital collection of their favorite finds.
    • Learn about the “Collection History”, “Collection Projects”, and “Preservation Projects”.
    • Download “Finding Guides” that provide concise descriptions of the scope and content, provenance and list of materials for each collection.
  • Educators
    • Find lesson plans and downloadable material “Curriculum” for such interesting topics as:
      • Owney the Dog (early elementary)
      • Victory Mail (upper elementary through high school)
      • Moving the Mail West (interactive study of the Pony Express for middle school)
      • We Were There: Letters From the Battle Front (high school)
    • “Classroom Resources” offers a ‘jumping off’ point for supplemental activities.
  • Stamp Collecting
    • Discover the ins and outs of the intriguing world of philately.
  • Research
    • Additional information for serious enthusiasts, including links to the museum library, historical video footage and exhibit videos, and more.
  • Getting Involved – Ways to get involved with the museum
  • Activity Zone
    • Quick access to the online games, coloring pages, quizzes, and downloads.
  • Museum Library
With the wealth of information and educational material available, this website will surely receive your stamp of approval.