The Learning Network: Teaching and Learning with The New York Times has tons of valuable resources and activities for 7th-12th grade teachers. It contains a blog that invites students 13 and older to contribute comments about the news. (Here’s their commenting FAQ page.) There are lessons based on content from The New York Times that can be adapted and are geared toward many content areas. Students can take news quizzes and more. Here’s a taste from my brief exploration today.
I explored the technology section and enjoyed the first post entitled, ‘The Secrets It Holds’: Discovering the Lively Morgue and Other Archives. It contains an interesting short video about the The Lively Morgue which left me wanting to explore this link to the The Lively Morgue Times Tumbler. I was not disappointed, and you will not be either if you enjoy captivating pictures that captured moments of everyday life from the past. Today’s highlighted picture of a bucking bronco in Montana in 1929 brought a smile to my face as I imagined one of my Montana relatives taking a ride. Grandma, is that you? Click on the picture and you’re in for another treat. Don’t take my word for it, browse other wonderful pictures such as this one, read, and learn.
This same post from The Learning Network, ‘The Secrets It Holds’: Discovering the Lively Morgue and Other Archives, has some excellent questions and could be used as a springboard for an assignment or discussion. Here are a few of the questions from this post: “Why do you think some people feel a stronger connection to a physical object like a book or photograph than the same data presented on a screen? As the photo editor Darcy Eveleigh says, ‘You can’t touch digital. It’s easier to look at, faster to look at, but it feels in a weird way like this [the morgue] is a little more permanent than digital.’ Would you agree? “
The post also contains suggested activities and links to additional worthwhile readings! These could easily be embedded in an engaging unit that probes students to consider issues of our times revolving around research, libraries, books, and the past and future. These concepts are things I’ve been thinking about over the past few years, and they relate to several articles written on this blog, including my post What’s a Book? Is This a Book? (Rereading this post written about a year ago made me think how much our conversations on this topic have changed since then, yet how the essence is the same.) It also relates to a podcast interview I listened to today with Mark Bauerlein and Steve Hargadon on Ed Tech Live.