Social Studies

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Frankie Quimby of Sapelo Island | EGG: The Arts Show

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This video segment from Egg: The Arts Show presents a glimpse of the last island-based Gullah/Geechee community located on Sapelo Island. The original Gullah/Geechee were slaves. When slavery was abolished, the lands on the island were abandoned to the slaves. Frankie Quimby of the Georgia Sea Island Singers speaks of her pride for the island community and the importance of preserving the Gullah/Geechee culture. She also tells how the songs of the slaves also served as escape songs. For more about Sapelo Island, see “Ben Hall of Sapelo Island” and “Ronald Johnson of Sapelo Island.”

Public Art in the Gilded Age | Treasures of New York: "Stanford White"

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Learn about the famous statue sculpted by Augustus Saint-Gaudens, “Diana of the Tower,” that sat atop Stanford White’s Madison Square Garden during the Gilded Age in this video from Treasures of New York: Stanford White. Through video, discussion questions, and classroom activities explore how public art reflects society and serves as a vivid connection to history.

The Gilded Age: Architecture for the Elite | Treasures of New York: "Stanford White"

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This series of videos from Treasures of New York: Stanford White presents the Gilded Age, an era of great wealth and remarkable architecture. Through video, discussion questions, and classroom activities, students explore how architecture, literature, and art reflect the issues and concerns of the time period, and how the era still resonates today.

Animal Shelter Photographer

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In this video segment from WILD TV, meet Joyce Faye, an animal photographer. She visits animal shelters in the Albuquerque, New Mexico area to photograph the homeless animals awaiting adoption. There are 26,000 dogs picked up every year in Albuquerque. Faye volunteers her time and expertise taking photographs of the dogs and cats and displays them on her web site. She hopes that people will rescue an animal from the shelter and make it a pet. Faye encourages us to do what we can to make the world a better place. Even small gestures make a difference.

Ben Hall of Sapelo Island

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This video segment from Egg: the arts show presents a glimpse of the last island-based Gullah/Geechee community located on Sapelo Island. The original Gullah/Geechee people were slaves. When slavery was abolished, the island was abandoned to the slaves. Ben Hall of the Sapelo Island Cultural and Revitalization Society speaks of his pride for the island and community. We learn the island is made up of some of the most valuable real estate in America, but its inhabitants have resisted the sort of development that has captured the other coastal islands off the shores of Georgia and South Carolina. For more about Sapelo Island, see "Ronald Johnson of Sapelo Island" and "Frankie Quimby of Sapelo Island."

Ronald Johnson of Sapelo Island

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This video segment from Egg: The Arts Show presents a glimpse of the last island-based Gullah/Geechee community located on Sapelo Island.The original Gullah/Geechee people were slaves. When slavery was abolished, the island was abandoned to the slaves. Ronald Johnson of the Sapelo Island Cultural and Revitalization Society speaks of his pride for the island community and the importance of preserving the Gullah/Geechee culture. A festival is held each year to bring people to the island to learn about the culture and foster interest in preserving the culture. For more about Sapelo Island, see "Ben Hall of Sapelo Island" and "Frankie Quimby of Sapelo Island".

City Horses Part I

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When you think of horses you don’t usually think of the city, but in this segment from Wild TV, Carolyne DeGrammont tells us about the Cedar Lane Stables in Queens, one of the five boroughs of New York City. People with different levels of skills with horses as well as people from all disciplines and backgrounds come to the stables. For Carolyne, going to the stables helps her find relief from the stresses of her fast-paced day. She can forget all of her troubles and feel happy. The atmosphere helps her feel connected to nature, too.

Rosemary Wells

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Rosemary Wells is the author and illustrator of delightful books for youngsters. In this interview, Wells talks about creating books for children and their adult readers that will stand up to being read over and over again. Watch the interview, view the interview transcript, read a short biography on Rosemary Wells, or see a selected list of her children's books.

Symbolism in "The Negro Speaks of Rivers" | A Walk Through Harlem

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This segment from A Walk Through Harlem presents the poem, "The Negro Speaks of Rivers,” written by Langston Hughes in 1922.  Hughes traveled to New York City by the 1920s to become a part of an exciting arts and culture movement called the Harlem Renaissance.  He later became known as the "poet laureate of Harlem." Hughes was one of the first African American writers who wrote about the authentic experiences of his people reflecting their pain, suffering, humor, creativity, and joy. Hughes made substantial artistic contributions to the Harlem Renaissance and holds an important place in American literature.  

Quoting Abraham Lincoln

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This excerpt from the PBS series Looking for Lincoln, features clips of Presidents Ronald Reagan, George W. Bush and Barack Obama quoting Lincoln's oratory-not always accurately-to lend his historical weight to their own speeches.

Black Hawk and Catlin: Native Americans Then and Now

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Explore issues connected to representation and point of view in depictions of 19th century Native Americans by George Catlin and Black Hawk in this video from Picturing America On Screen. Catlin’s paintings provide testimony not only to the country’s fascination with American Indians but also to the artist’s ambition to document disappearing frontier cultures. Black Hawk’s work provides invaluable visual testimony to the nation’s Native American heritage and reveals intriguing details of the Lakota people—from manner of dress to social customs. In doing so, he captures a way of life that was fast disappearing as settlers moved West in increasing numbers and tribes were moved to reservations.

Support material challenges students to define culture and asks them to consider how Native Americans see themselves today. While it may be valuable to look to history to help understand Native American culture, tribes are still very much alive today and have redefined themselves as a living culture. Students are asked to think about stereotypes held about Native Americans and to research and learn more about a Native American tribe today.

To Kill a Mockingbird Setting: A Portrait of a Southern Town in the 1930s

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In this video from American Masters: Harper Lee: Hey, Boo, learn about the small town of Monroeville, Alabama, Harper Lee’s hometown and the inspiration for the fictional town of Maycomb, the setting for To Kill a Mockingbird. Through archival interviews, photographs, and present-day commentary (including an excerpt from an interview with Harper Lee), students will learn what life was like for people living in the South during the Great Depression.

The Negro Speaks of Rivers | A Walk Through Harlem

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This segment from A Walk Through Harlem presents the poem, "The Negro Speaks of Rivers,” written by Langston Hughes in 1922 when he was eighteen years old. Born in Joplin, Missouri, Hughes traveled to New York City in the 1920s to become a part of an exciting arts and culture movement called the Harlem Renaissance. He later became known as the "poet laureate of Harlem." Hughes was one of the first African American writers who wrote stories about the authentic experiences of his people reflecting their pain, suffering, humor, creativity, and joy. He often was inspired by music and incorporated it into his poetry. Hughes made substantial artistic contributions to the Harlem Renaissance and holds an important place in American literature.

Author Wes Moore Explores Where Two Lives Diverge

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One name, two starkly different lives - that's the real-life scenario at the heart of author Wes Moore's new book, which explores how his life diverged from that of another boy with the same name who grew up in the same inner city Baltimore neighborhood.

Toni Morrison on Paradise

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Toni Morrison, winner of both the Pulitzer and Nobel prizes, discusses her writing process and her novel Paradise.

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