Social Studies

Social Studies (X) - Middle (X) - U.S. History (X) - Civics and Government (X)

Analyzing Primary Sources to Learn about the Past | Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum

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In this series of three mini-lessons, students will participate in a virtual visit to the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum where they’ll have the chance to analyze a variety of primary sources to learn about the character and leadership of President Gerald R. Ford, as well as the era in which he served.

Freedom of Conscience | Dutch New York

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This segment from Dutch New York describes the experiences of both the Sephardic Jews and the Quakers as they settled in New Amsterdam in search of religious freedom. The director of New Netherland colony, Peter Stuyvesant, was not initially welcoming of the Jews and the Quakers, but ultimately was advised by his superiors in Amsterdam to allow people of all faiths to practice their religion. This video also describes how the Quakers drafted a list of grievances, later called The Flushing Remonstrance, which is one of the roots of religious freedom in America.

1812 Portfolio Lesson Plan

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In this lesson, to be used with the program The War of 1812, students will create a war of 1812 portfolio and in the process learn about key concepts, battles, figures, and outcomes of the war. The completed portfolio can serve as a study guide for the war of 1812.

Minnesota Legacy Short | Alexander McKenzie: The Boss of North Dakota

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Learn about Alexander McKenzie who ruled the government of North Dakota with an iron fist from his headquarters in St. Paul. "Boss" McKenzie, as he became known, created a political machine that favored the railroad and grain interests.

It's All Earth and Sky | The Tigers of Their World

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As the generations pass, changes and assimilation of Germans from Russia and many other ethnic groups result in finding a balance between their traditional ethnicity and being American, bringing the best of both worlds to their successful endeavors. 

 

 

The Pilgrims: Mayflower Compact

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Discover why most of the Mayflower's male passengers signed an historic agreement, in this video adapted from AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: The Pilgrims. In September 1620, religious dissenters, called "Separatists" by their detractors, were joined aboard the Mayflower by other English colonists recruited by the project's financial backers. Many of these newcomers did not share the Separatists' religious zeal. The ship set sail for America at a time of year when Atlantic storms were perilous. The Mayflower made landfall 66 days later. With tensions threatening to divide the passengers, a social compact was drafted and signed before going ashore. All signers would submit to the government created, officers elected, and laws drafted. 

See Support Materials for an activity and links to primary sources, including the Mayflower Compact. This resource is part of the AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: The Pilgrims Collection.

The White House: Inside Story | Protests at the White House

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While the White House may be a center of pomp and circumstance, it is also a hotspot for people to voice their opinions. From women picketing for the right to vote in the early 20th Century to groups protesting world actions and domestic decisions today, Americans congregate within ear-shot of the President, who is just a few feet away from 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. For example, in the midst of the Vietnam War, LBJ could hear the daily chants of protestors: “Hey, Hey, LBJ, How many kids did you kill today?” Their actions had an impact. This opportunity for Americans to exercise their First Amendment rights is part of what makes The White House The People’s House.

The White House: Inside Story | Part 9

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The American people have a voice, and their participation is important at the White House. From all kinds of protests to holiday celebrations, this landmark, home, and government building is still made for the people. Standing at the epicenter of global politics, in the heart of the nation’s capital, the story of the White House is the story of America itself.

Nebraska History Moments in Social Studies: History

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Nebraska fun facts that are historical, art related, science and literature based. Falls under standards for Social Studies, Science, Fine Arts and Language Arts.

Simple Justice 6: Justice Warren Reads the Decision

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When Brown v. Board of Education was first heard in 1952, the Supreme Court was so divided that the justices rescheduled the case. Two years later, on May 17, 1954, the Court ruled unanimously that segregated schools were unconstitutional. This video segment from American Experience: "Simple Justice" examines the individual justices, key events and issues for the Court, and how the jurists arrived at their final decision.

Freedom Riders: The Governor

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In this video segment adapted from the American Experience "Freedom Riders" Web site, watch newsreel footage and interviews and see archival photos to explore one Southern politician's opposition to ending illegal discrimination and segregation against African Americans in the early 1960s. Alabama Governor John Patterson would not honor Attorney General Robert Kennedy's request to ensure the safety of the Freedom Riders, and even refused to take a phone call from President John Kennedy while white mobs were firebombing buses and beating civil rights activists in Patterson's home state. Years later, Patterson expressed his regret for not taking the president's call and for not doing "what should have been done". This resource is part of the American Experience: Freedom Riders Collection.

Simple Justice 3: The Trial Begins

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After decades of fighting for equal education, the NAACP's legal struggle came before the United States Supreme Court. The Court's decision in Brown v. Board of Education would either affirm or outlaw the segregated schools that existed across the country. This video segment from American Experience: "Simple Justice" recalls the opening arguments.

Simple Justice 2: Social Science Evidence

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In this video segment, African American psychologist Dr. Kenneth B. Clark conducts his famous "doll test," designed to gather social science evidence of the effects of racial discrimination. That evidence would eventually be presented in Brown v. Board of Education. to argue that racial discrimination in public schools was a violation of the Constitution and psychologically harmful to African American children.

Implementing Brown

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This video segment reveals conflicting views of President Eisenhower's response to the Brown v. Board of Education ruling against segregated schools. NAACP attorney Constance Baker Motley argues that the president should have done more to enforce the ruling. Former attorney general Herbert Brownell and his deputy, William Rogers, explain the president's cautious response.

Freedom Riders: The Exchange Student

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In this video segment from the American Experience: "Freedom Riders" Web site, watch newsreel footage and interviews and see archival photos to gain insight into the white college students who became active in the struggle for African Americans' civil rights. Jim Zwerg tells how he became one of the Freedom Riders, a decision that led to his estrangement from his parents and a beating at the hands of an Alabama mob. This resource is part of the American Experience: Freedom Riders collection.

This video includes language that is considered offensive. However, it provides authentic documentation of the bigotry of the era.

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