With winter arriving this month, my thoughts turned to a different kind of cleaning: snow removal. How were city streets cleared long ago, and what was life like before plows and snowblowers? I discovered some intriguing images that answer some of my questions and raise many new ones.
Gift giving, a centuries- old tradition, is an important part of human interaction. It is also an important part of government diplomacy. Consider using the Library’s primary sources to help students understand the historical significance of gift giving.
For centuries, national and global leaders have appeared to take important steps toward peace, while still pursuing political concerns. The Library of Congress’s collections of primary sources can encourage students to explore the impact of a variety of peace settlements and how we can find peaceful solutions in our own lives.
Most students think of maps as wayfinders, resources to help find their way from point "A" to point "B." However, maps have been created for a variety of different reasons, and studying maps from the Library of Congress can show students how maps can do more than provide directions.
Each year the Library of Congress provides the opportunity for K-12 educators to attend one of its Summer Teacher Institutes in Washington, D.C. During the five-day institutes, participants work with Library of Congress education specialists to learn best practices for using primary sources in the K-12 classroom, while exploring some of the millions of digitized primary sources available on the Library’s Web site.
When I've asked my students, “Would anyone be interested in a trip on a ferry?” they've all cheered with excitement. But I wonder how many of us would be brave enough to take a night voyage through an ice-clogged river on a boat battered by snow and high winds. Primary sources from the Library of Congress can let students explore this momentous--and shivery--event.
Information literacy standards require students to think about the creator’s purpose and determine the meaning of symbols. The Thomas Jefferson Building: Secret Messages is an online activity that helps students do both.