Closer Readings +

Memorial Day: Commemoration, Rediscovery, and Reconsideration

On the last Monday in May the nation celebrates Memorial Day. It is, of course, a day off from school and work and the unofficial beginning of the summer. There are cookouts, picnics, and always a televised concert on the National Mall.Much more important, it is an occasion to pay tribute to those men and women who have died in defense of the homeland. There is a rich literature of speeches, stories, poems, and essays about these sacrifices. Read More »
Categories Closer Readings

Summer Reading 2016

“Gotchur Nose, Kid.” Brooklyn Public Library Summer Reading mural, May 18, 2006.
“This was my only and my constant comfort. When I think of it, the picture always rises in my mind, of a summer evening, the boys at play in the churchyard, and I sitting on my bed, reading as if for life.” ― Charles Dickens, David Copperfield, chapter 4.Summer is the perfect time to dive into classic stories, poetry, drama, and informational texts, including foundational documents of American government and history and works by the great thinkers.Read More »
Categories Closer Readings

Introducing American Art at the Core of Learning

Participants at American Art at the Core of Learning, courtesy Terra Foundation
Using art as a teaching resourceWhether you’re in the classroom or on a field trip, artworks are a fantastic way to engage students. But how do you go beyond art as illustration and use it as rich informational text? How do you deepen your skill set when integrating visual art into your curriculum?Read More »
Categories Closer Readings

A Special Guide for Teachers to the Films of Ken Burns

home page image from Ken Burns site
More Americans get their history from Ken Burns than any other source.  —Historian Stephen AmbroseOn May 9, 2016, the distinguished documentary filmmaker Ken Burns will deliver the Jefferson Lecture, sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities. The lecture is the highest honor the federal government bestows for distinguished intellectual achievement in the humanities.Read More »
Categories Closer Readings