Taking five minutes to explore this great resource will only scratch the surface. This fall, the New York Public Library published its “Treasures of the New York Public Library” website.Organized by theme and content, this site is a rich repository of resources excellent especially for literature, science, history and art classrooms. There are 3-5 minute videos on topics including the Harlem Renaissance, art deco, and mapping the world, as well as images and text resources supporting the studies of art, history, world history, New York, science and inventions, and others. A wonderful repository to explore.
The power of words is amazing and this site can definitely take more than five minute of a person’s Friday. Save the Words is a site dedicated to the words which have been removed from the Oxford due to lack of use. Words have been reinstated into the dictionary, but for this to happen, they need to be used. From vocabulary lessons to a fun study of words past to a casual use of a new but old word, Save the Words is a wonderful place to “take five” and investigate.
Thinking back to my first classroom, I remember a television falling on me from a top-heavy cart with a VCR on the second shelf. Showing a video clip has definitely come a long way. Today’s “Five” spotlights five great (and free) video resources which will help teachers in all disciplines.
1. iTunes. In the iTunes store, under “Podcasts” if one clicks on “News & Politics,” a wealth of free video resources are revealed (I like the free access to the “Meet the Press” without needing a video tape or dvd!).
2. TV.com is making my list because I have always been frustrated with the availability of “60 Minutes” video and TV.com has it! (Along with a wealth of other videos)
3. National Geographic. National Geographic’s Video collection provides great access to both clips and longer videos in many categories including: Animals, Environment, Culture, and more.
4. SnagFilms. I admit, I’m hooked. History, Music and Culture, the Arts, Politics, Science, Sports, find your documentaries here.
5. Hulu. How could one not include Hulu? Along with the general television shows which those of us without dvrs might miss, there are channels dedicated to Food, Home and Garden, Music, Politics, could provide good content that might be overlooked.
The Minnesota Historical Society has been working hard on providing high quality resources for educators and they are succeeding. Some of the resources, like the web-showcase for the Governors of Minnesota would be perfect for Minnesota-specific history courses or for History or Literature programs that would focus on who was the governor at the time. Other resources, like TimePieces gives the user not only clickable events which took place throughout Minnesota’s History (great 1886 start Mr. Sears) but used in conjunction with the Governors’ exhibit, could provide a neat showcase of what happened when who was governor.
Forests, Fields and the Falls is a great flash/comic-style resource which explores the lives of four actual Minnesotans. Beyond just Minnesota history, any unit looking at events in US history around the 1900’s might find this useful.
On the topic of race-relations and the 1920’s, the “Duluth Lynchings Online Resource” contains a multimedia timeline, an online glossary, a timeline of the legal proceedings, additional resources, and oral histories of those who lived in Duluth around the time of the lynching of three young black men in Duluth, MN on July 15, 1920. A rich resource. A powerful comparison unit might include an investigation of Rosewood, Florida in 1923 and Duluth, MN in 1920.
If your students are learning about the New Deal, or discussing President Obama’s stimulous package and ideas for turning the economy around with jobs programs, exploring the MNHS’s CCC Footlocker would be a super resource for any grade. Also focused on the time periods of the 1920’s-WWII, the MNHS is collecting the stories of the Greatest Generation and sharing them in “In Their Words.” Click on the time period you are interested in and then the topic and you will see the people who have contributed to that section of the project. One of our English teachers is going to use this as a resource for her 9th graders when they write ballads.
Beyond these resources, the MNHS has online document and photo searches, and a wealth of additional resources for schools. Historical societies can often times be more personal/local than the also wonderful National Archives or Library of Congress. Additionally, even if these materials are not useful as they are to your curriculum, they might be useful as idea or template generators.