What I Learned as Teacher in Residence at the Library of Congress

digThis post is by Rebecca Newland,  Library of Congress Teacher in Residence, 2013-15.dig



Just two short school years ago I began serving as Teacher in Residence at the Library of Congress. I came not knowing what to expect, but anticipating a life-changing experience. I am glad to say I was not disappointed.

I have changed both professionally and personally while here.

  • I have learned about delivering professional development to adults, discovering that just as when working with students, the key to learning is engagement.
  • I have experienced the richest collaborative relationships of my career with some of the most knowledgeable experts in the world. They work here in divisions across the Library, sharing the vast collections with the world.
  • I have discovered the frustrations and joys of searching the digitized collections, cringing upon seeing the phrase “Access to this resource is only available at the Library of Congress,” but often finding something just as fabulous with “no known restrictions.”
  • I have come to appreciate the power of primary sources to engage our students, inspiring them to ask questions and seek answers.

Personally, I fell in love with the great city of Washington, DC and have decided to stay. I will be working as a high school librarian in northern Virginia. I am excited to share what I have learned at the Library of Congress with my new colleagues and students.

Thank you to everyone who supported me in this journey both inside and outside the Library of Congress.

New Library of Congress Ebooks: Japanese American Internment, Women’s Suffrage, and Political Cartoons

What would it be like to hold history in your hands? To leaf through the pages of a suffragist’s scrapbook? To scrutinize a political cartoon published by Benjamin Franklin? To hear a decorated veteran speak to you about what it was like to live in a detention camp in his own country? The Library of […]

Celebrating Summer with Beach-Worthy Posts

Those of us at the Library who work in education are celebrating the fourth anniversary of the Teaching with the Library of Congress blog.

We’re grateful for all the journeys of discovery that we’ve taken in the course of creating posts for this blog, and we’re grateful for all the co-authors and guest authors who’ve enriched its pages over the years.

Teacher Webinar May 7: English Learners, the Common Core and Primary Sources

How can time-strapped teachers find and use free resources from the online collections of the Library of Congress to support the needs of diverse learners? Join us in a webinar on Thursday, May 7, at 4 PM ET, to learn strategies “to engage students in the analysis of evidence (Common Core), increase comprehensible input (diverse learners), and promote content learning and student engagement.”

Inviting Students to Consider Possible Research Paths Suggested by Three Sources from the Late 19th Century

In the March/April 2014 issue of Social Education, the journal of the National Council for the Social Studies, our “Sources and Strategies” article described the invention of the phonograph and how it was used by the 19th century American ethnologists, Alice Cunningham Fletcher and Francis La Flesche, to record music and interviews with Omaha Indians.

Three New Ebooks from the Library of Congress: The Industrial Revolution, Jim Crow, and Children’s Lives

Walk with civil rights activists as they march against racial segregation. Pick out the details of a nineteenth-century factory. Zoom in on the faces of children at play one hundred years ago.

As teachers begin planning for the next school year, the Library of Congress invites students everywhere to touch, draw on, and explore some of its most valuable treasures–all via its three newest free interactive ebooks for tablets.

Teacher Webinar, Thursday April 23: Primary Sources and Chronicling America

Last June Teaching with the Library of Congress introduced Tonijala Penn, Digital Conversion Specialist for Chronicling America. On April 23, at 4 pm ET, she’ll join us in a webinar, so we’d like to reintroduce her. During the webinar, Library staff will model primary source teaching strategies and highlight historic newspapers available through the Chronicling […]