Teacher resources and professional development across the curriculum

Teacher professional development and classroom resources across the curriculum

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Artifacts and Fiction - Workshop in American Literature
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Workshop 1: Visual Arts
Item #1491 This session introduces the pairing of visual art objects with American literature by examining how two paintings by the early American portraitist John Singleton Copley can help teachers and students better understand the literary project of self-representation in Benjamin Franklin's Autobiography.

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Workshop 2: Political History
Item #9250 In this session, teachers use political artifacts—items such as laws and "Wanted" posters that relate directly to the political process, and items such as newspapers that reflect political views and movements—to explore the political contexts reflected in John Rollin Ridge's nineteenth-century fictionalized story of the outlaw Joaquin Murieta and Yoshiko Uchida's Picture Bride, a novel about early twentieth-century Japanese immigrants to the United States.

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Workshop 3: Social History
Item #8161 This session pairs the social history artifacts of a bill of sale for a slave and an illustration of a slave auction with Frederick Douglass's slave narrative. It also pairs World War I recruitment posters with Ernest Hemingway's A Farewell to Arms. These pairings demonstrate how social history artifacts, which document the experiences of ordinary people, allow teachers and students to analyze the choices made by literary characters.

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Workshop 4: Oral Histories
Item #6393 During this session, teachers learn to use oral history artifacts—recordings of spoken and sung works—to better understand written literature. Mexican American corridos and folktales provide cultural contexts for a poem and essay by Gloria Anzaldúa and for Cormac McCarthy's young adult novel All the Pretty Horses. Both authors' works depict the oral transmission of information and values in bilingual Mexican American communities.

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Workshop 5: Domestic Architecture
Item #8963 Teachers in this session use photographs of houses from different eras and cultures as domestic architecture artifacts. They explore how cultural values are reflected in domestic spaces as they consider the thematic significance of literal and metaphoric homes in the poetry of Luci Tapahonso, Simon Ortiz, and Emily Dickinson.

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Workshop 6: Cultural Geography
Item #9098 This session introduces the use of cultural geography artifacts, such as photographs and maps of specific neighborhoods, to understand how the spaces represented in Sandra Cisneros's The House on Mango Street and Kate Chopin's The Awakening reflect the characters' racial and class positions.

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Workshop 7: Ritual Artifacts
Item #4427 In this session, teachers explore how individuals use secular and religious rituals to create a sense of order and meaning for their worlds. Examining Puritan gravestones as ritual artifacts provides a way to better understand the beliefs expressed in Mary Rowlandson's captivity narrative, Jonathan Edwards's sermon "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God," and Arthur Miller's play The Crucible.

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Workshop 8: Ceremonial Artifacts
Item #6303 This session invites teachers to consider how ceremonial artifacts function in the expression and transmission of religious beliefs by pairing Native American baskets with Leslie Marmon Silko's novel Ceremony and two traditional Native American tales.

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