Muddling through the blogosphere

ISTE Day 3: Bringing History Alive – Library of Congress


LOC Dust Bowl collection

LOC Dust Bowl collection

It’s been a while since I’ve revisited the Library of Congress Teachers website, so I’m  attending this session to see what’s new (and as a way to remember my LOC friend and mentor Leni Donlan). Gail Petri is the main presenter and has already uploaded her presentation: Differentiation through the Use of Primary Sources.

Activity – Gail’s starting by asking what kinds of primary sources do you have with you? Pick item – then tell neighbor why you picked it. Point: recognize that what we put together for our students reflects our own biases.

Gail shows bibliographic record when working with students. If you click on the migrant children photograph above (from the Voices of the Dust Bowl collection), that will take you to the bibliographic record for this image. Gail recommends taking advantage of the growing collection of LOC primary sources to engage students, build their critical thinking skills, and help them to construct knowledge. If you open her PowerPoint, you’ll see a sample resources for igniting a conversation around immigration, for instance, via a study of historic newspapers.

Loved the 1916 sheet music piece Don’t Bite the Hand that’s Feeding You, which connects in many ways to 2011 issues. Thanks to the LOC’s National Jukebox, teachers now have access to 10,000 songs, recorded from 1900-1925, for streaming (no downloading).  How often do we have our students listen carefully to the words in a song – across 100 years?!

And I think you’re going to want to click on the image below to watch actual 1903 footage, credited to Thomas Edison, of immigrants debarking on Ellis Island. Great window into our past!

Thank you, LOC, for your incredible collections of our nation’s history.

ellis island

Click on image to access viewing LOC viewing options

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