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Lesson Plans (4) A detailed description of the instruction for teaching one or more concepts or skills. Podcasts (3) A program (audio or video) made available in digital format for playback or download over the Internet. Informational Materials (13) Textual information containing useful facts or information.
Interactives/Games (4) A learning object that requires a user's involvement.


ALEX Lesson Plans


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Subject: Character Education (K - 12), or Social Studies (7 - 12)
Title: Famous Failures
Description: The students are shown a video of "Famous Failures" which provides examples of famous people who failed many times prior to becoming successful. The students are encouraged to discuss the different people in the video and are asked to think about the famous person's contributions. Was Walt Disney's impact greater than Henry Ford's? The students then (teacher facilitated) list the ten famous people they would put on a “Top 10 list." This is a College- and Career-Ready Standards showcase lesson plan.


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Subject: English Language Arts (11), or Social Studies (10 - 11), or Technology Education (9 - 12)
Title: The Challenges and New Inventions of the Great Plains Farmer.
Description: Students will work in groups of four to create presentations using their research on a particular farming invention that was created from (1837-1867) and also research specific elements about life on the Great Plains. Each group's presentation will be merged into a final class presentation.


Thinkfinity Lesson Plans


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Subject: Language Arts,Social Studies
Title: United States Entry into World War I: Some Hypotheses About U.S. Entry     
Description: In this lesson, one of a multi-part unit from EDSITEment, students explain what the most compelling reasons were for the U.S. to enter World War I. Students create a hypothetical justification for U.S. involvement in World War I, supported by specific evidence.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



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Subject: Social Studies
Title: History Now     
Description: This EDSITEment-reviewed Web site, from the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, is a quarterly online journal for teachers and students. The site features lesson plans, reflections from leading historians, multimedia interactive resources such as audio clips and slideshows and an '' Ask the Archivist'' section where teachers and students can send questions and see the answers posted on the site. Users can find information on Abraham Lincoln, national holidays, elections, voting rights, immigration, the American West, slavery, abolitionism and the Civil Rights Movement.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



ALEX Podcasts


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The New South: A Social & Economic View
Overview:
ArchiTreats: Food for Thought celebrates the Year of Alabama History through a series of sequential lectures in Alabama history by leading experts in the field. Join us as Marlene Rikard presents The New South: A Social and Economic View. This presentation was held at the Alabama Department of Archives and History. Post-Reconstruction Alabama experienced major social and economic changes in the era known as the “New South,” a term coined by Henry Grady of the Atlanta Constitution. Emancipation of the slaves and falling cotton prices brought changes in agriculture for plantation owners, African Americans, and poor whites. Although farming remained the occupation of most Alabamians, industrialization became the mantra of new leaders who promised recovery and prosperity though the development of the state’s natural resources in mining and manufacturing. But prosperity proved elusive and change brought conflict in the form of strikes, segregation and Jim Crow laws, political turmoil, and battles over temperance, woman’s suffrage, regulation of public utilities, and convict leasing. The era changed Alabama forever. Dr. Marlene Hunt Rikard recently retired as Professor of History at Samford University. Following graduation from Auburn University, she began her work life as a graphic designer before returning to school for graduate work in history and teaching for thirty-five years. She was also Director of Samford’s London Programs for over a decade. She has served as president of the Southern Association of Women Historians, the Alabama Association of Historians, and the Alabama Historical Association. This ArchiTreats presentation is made possible by the Friends of the Alabama Archives and a grant from the Alabama Humanities Foundation, a state program of the National Endowment for the Humanities. The public is invited to bring a sack lunch and enjoy a bit of Alabama history. Coffee and tea will be provided by the Friends of the Alabama Archives. For more information, call (334) 353-4712.


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Cast in Iron
Overview:
Sloss Furnaces carries a rich legacy that began in the post-Civil War South and continues through to today. It was founded in 1882 by James Withers Sloss who paid only $180,000 to have it built. Sloss Furnaces became a symbol of pride and progress in the South. It was the first to export iron overseas and helped make Birmingham, AL a thriving city. Listen as historians take you through Sloss's legacy and ironworkers recount what it was like to work inside its walls.  


Thinkfinity Podcasts


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Subject: Social Studies
Title: World War I Overview     
Description: Overview of the First World War, taken from news reel footage. Includes the declaration of war and invasion of Belgium by Germany, U Boats and naval warfare, trench warfare, United States entrance and end of war.This video is part of the Price of Freedom learning resources package for use with the The Soldiers Experience lesson plan. It was produced to accompany the exhibition The Price of Freedom: Americans at War , by the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: 2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Thinkfinity Informational Materials


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Subject: Social Studies
Title: America on the Move Homepage     
Description: This online exhibition explores the role of transportation in American history. Students will learn about communities wrestling with the changes that new transportation networks brought; how cities change, suburbs expand, and farms and factories become part of regional, national and international economies; and hear the stories of people who travel for work and pleasure, and move to new homes.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



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Subject: Social Studies
Title: Souvenir of the Opening of the East River Bridge, May 24, 1883     
Description: By the late 19th century, the United States had established itself as a world leader in the area of civil engineering. Perhaps no project better symbolized America's technical prowess than the awe-inspiring Brooklyn Bridge, which connected the nation's largest and third largest cities—New York and Brooklyn, respectively—in 1883 across the turbulent tidal strait known as the East River. The main 1,600-foot (490-meter) of this towering suspension bridge exceeded the world's longest by fifty percent...
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: 5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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Subject: Social Studies
Title: United States, One Dollar, Pattern, 1879     
Description: United States Mint, Philadelphia. Obverse: Young head of Liberty, facing right; date below. Reverse: Eagle, facing left; denomination below. The piece was designed by George T. Morgan, and, while no more successful than any of his other designs, stands in marked contrast to them. Because of the youthful appearance of the Liberty head, this pattern was dubbed the "Schoolgirl" dollar, perhaps as early as the 1890s...
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: 5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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Subject: Social Studies
Title: Sheet Music-"The Battle of the Sewing Machines"     
Description: The Battle of the Sewing Machines" was composed and arranged by F. Hyde for the piano, and was published in 1874 by Wm. A. Pond Co. of 547 Broadway, N.Y., N.Y. The lithograph by R. Teller of 120 Wooster St., N.Y., N.Y., illustrates a "battle" of sewing machines. The Remington "army" is marching towards the fleeing Singer, Howe, Succor, Weed, and Willcox Gibbs sewing machines. The soldiers are riding the Remington treadle machines like horses and are carrying Remington rifles. The Remington No. 2 sewing machine had just come out to market in June 1874. The family treadle machine with a drop-leaf table and two drawers would have cost $75.00.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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Subject: Social Studies
Title: Making Sense of "Failed" Car Technology     
Description: Students can learn about the history of experimentation and innovation in the design of steam-powered, internal-combustion, electric, and solar-powered automobiles. This reference page is included in the online exhibition entitled America on the Move , which focuses on transportation in US history.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: 9,10,11,12



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Subject: Social Studies
Title: 1848 Gold Nugget     
Description: This small piece of yellow metal is believed to be the first piece of gold discovered in 1848 at Sutter's Mill in California, which launched the gold rush. National Museum of American History
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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Subject: Social Studies
Title: 1880s Agricultural Nation Classroom Activity Guide     
Description: In this set of classroom activities developed for the exhibition America on the Move , students will use visual, analytical, and interpretive skills to examine primary sources including historical maps to answer questions about farming, transportation, immigration, and racism in the 1880s, and will answer questions about the history and impact of railroads on their own communities. The activities provide opportunities for historical analysis, interpretation, evaluation, analyzing cause/effect relationships, understanding multiple points of view, performing original research, debating and persuasive writing and help students develop and strengthen map-reading skills and the ability to identify issues and problems in the past and connect the past to the present.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: 5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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Subject: Geography,Social Studies
Title: After the Gold Rush     
Description: Article. Short article on the aftermath of the California Gold Rush.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: C1,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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Subject: Social Studies
Title: Chinese-American Shop Sign     
Description: This sign was purchased by a North Beach second-hand shop from a proprietor in the neighboring Chinatown district of San Francisco. It is said to date from between 1890 and 1910. It is likely that the language is Cantonese, the dialect used in Southern China, which was engaged in foreign trade long before military oppression and American labor recruitment in the mid-19th century brought immigrants to "Gun San'' or the "Land of the Golden Mountain,'' as the Cantonese referred to the West Coast of the United States. National Museum of American History
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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Subject: Geography,Social Studies
Title: Gold Fever     
Description: Article. Short article on the discovery of gold in California that sparked the California Gold Rush.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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Subject: Social Studies
Title: History Now     
Description: This EDSITEment-reviewed Web site, from the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, is a quarterly online journal for teachers and students. The site features lesson plans, reflections from leading historians, multimedia interactive resources such as audio clips and slideshows and an '' Ask the Archivist'' section where teachers and students can send questions and see the answers posted on the site. Users can find information on Abraham Lincoln, national holidays, elections, voting rights, immigration, the American West, slavery, abolitionism and the Civil Rights Movement.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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Subject: Arts,Social Studies,Geography
Title: Western History: The Photography Collection     
Description: Created through the joint efforts of the Western History/Geneology Department of the Denver Public Library and the Colorado Historical Society, this site is an archive of more than one million images documenting the history of Colorado and the American West.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: C1,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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Subject: Social Studies
Title: Treasures of American History: American Identity     
Description: Many of the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History's treasures give insight into what it has meant to be an American. In this section of the online exhibition entitled "Treasures of American History'' , students will explore the diverse roots of American culture as well as common experiences shared across lines of race, ethnicity, and region. They will learn how culturally, Americans have defined themselves in many ways; through artistic expression, ethnic traditions, work and play, and home and community life. A Spanish version of the exhibition is available on the exhibition's homepage.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: 5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Thinkfinity Interactive Games


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Subject: Language Arts,Social Studies
Title: Creating Stories Activity Kit     
Description: In this activity kit, students will use primary and secondary sources, and conduct oral history interviews to construct a family immigration or migration story. The kit contains step-by-step instructions, sample interview questions, and research guidance. The kit can be used in conjunction with a 28 minute streaming video called http://americanhistory.si.edu/onthemove/learning/AOTM_education_2.wvx" Creating Stories: America on the Move Electronic Field Part 2 . It is included in the online exhibition entitled America on the Move , which focuses on transportation in US history.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: 5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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Subject: Social Studies
Title: The Lynch Family: Immigration and the Industrial Revolution     
Description: In the 1870s and 1880s, Catherine Tracy Lynch, an Irish immigrant, and her daughter, Mary, rented one side of the Ipswich, Massachusetts house that is the focus of Within These Walls, an online exhibition from the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History. Catherine took in laundry and Mary was one of hundreds of workers employed by Ipswich Mills. Renting meant sharing space with boarders, other renters in the house, and probably relatives recently arrived from Ireland. Students can learn about the Lynches and the realities of life for many Americans during the Industrial Revolution by examining a map and description of their apartment, a page from an 1885 account book, and objects from the period.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: 4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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Subject: Social Studies
Title: Western Indian Wars     
Description: In the decades following the Civil War, the U.S. Army fought dozens of engagements with Indians in the West. This website explores Federal Indian policies and conflicts that arose as Americans flooded west into the Great Plains. Through the use of images and objects from the Museum's collections, students will learn about: Sitting Bull, George Custer and the Battle of Little Bighorn; the massacre at Wounded Knee; the resistance of Geronimo and the Chiricahua Apache; buffalo soldiers; and the realities of life on Indian Reservations. A non-flash version of the site is available: http://americanhistory.si.edu/militaryhistory/printable/section.asp?id=6" Western Indian Wars .
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: 5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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Subject: Social Studies
Title: History Now     
Description: This EDSITEment-reviewed Web site, from the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, is a quarterly online journal for teachers and students. The site features lesson plans, reflections from leading historians, multimedia interactive resources such as audio clips and slideshows and an '' Ask the Archivist'' section where teachers and students can send questions and see the answers posted on the site. Users can find information on Abraham Lincoln, national holidays, elections, voting rights, immigration, the American West, slavery, abolitionism and the Civil Rights Movement.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Alabama Virtual Library
Alabama Virtual Library

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The University of Alabama at Birmingham
The University of Alabama at Birmingham
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The Malone Family Foundation
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