Topic: Archival Education

Yellow Fever

Grades 4-8. The following unit engages students with archival material related to the yellow fever epidemic during the construction of the Panama Canal. Students will learn about archives, primary and secondary sources through the lens of the yellow fever. They will make connections to other public health campaigns such as tuberculosis and Covid. Applying present…

Voter Education: Audiovisual Media Literacy Video and Classroom Guide

This media literacy classroom activity centers on a video we developed with the RAC’s Audiovisual Archivist Brent Phillips. It includes clips of audiovisual documents related to voter education, which can serve as primary sources to view, analyze, and discuss in a classroom setting. The classroom activity guide below is available as a PDF download at…

Learning About and Creating Student Archives

Grades 3-6. Introduces students to archives, primary sources, and secondary sources. This flexible unit includes nine lessons in which students document their own learning experiences by creating, describing, and organizing primary sources. Each student’s personal papers are aggregated into a class archive that is then described in a mock finding aid.  View this resource on…

From Dream to Reality: Building the Hale Telescope Primary Source STEAM Workshop

Grades 8-12. This project describes to students the great hurdle in the Hale Telescope’s construction: successfully transporting the 40-ton, 200-inch mirror and its packing materials from upstate New York to the top of Palomar Mountain in southern California. Documents include shipping manifests, conversations regarding the movement of the mirror, and photographic documentation of the mirror’s…

The Cold War

High school to graduate levels. This workshop places students into the role of program officers during the 1940s and 1950s. Drawing on twenty-two records from the Rockefeller Archive Center collections, the project explores philanthropic activities during a period of ideological and geopolitical tensions. View this resource on OER Commons.

Experimentation and Innovation: Building the Hale Telescope

High school to graduate levels. The primary sources in this workshop can be used to strengthen critical reading skills, support inquiry-based learning exercises, and expose students to the stories of trial and error that lie behind most scientific or engineering breakthroughs. View this resource on OER Commons.

The War of the Worlds, Fake News, and Media Literacy

Grades 4-8. This unit offers multiple entry points into developing an understanding of media literacy around the War of the Worlds broadcast. It includes a midpoint writing assessment, whole class capstone debate, and final independent writing assessment. View this resource on OER Commons.

Voter Education Audiovisual Media Literacy Guide

Grades 4-8. The clips of legacy audiovisual documents related to voter education serve as primary sources that can be viewed, analyzed, and discussed in a classroom setting to help students build media literacy skills. The corresponding video provides a guided learning experience.   View this resource on OER Commons.

Refugee Scholars

Grades 9-16. This workshop presents selected primary sources from the Rockefeller Foundation holdings at the Rockefeller Archive Center. This is intended for use in facilitating a classroom exercise on the Rockefeller Foundation’s 1933-1945 refugee scholar program. This workshop enables students to imagine and grapple with the difficult choices RF officials had to make in one…

How To Do Research

Grades 4-8. This unit guide provides a lesson-to-lesson foundation for teaching about primary sources, and how to evaluate and cite sources, do document analysis, and formulate and find answers to a research question. View this resource on OER Commons.