Listen to History Online

The Smithsonian Institution Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage has joined with bigchalk.com to launch Sounds of History, a free online field trip. This virtual expedition uses sounds, from music to the spoken word to everyday noises, to engage students and inspire critical thinking, comprehension and deductive reasoning. The program offers students and teachers access to recordings from the Smithsonian Institution’s archives, along with lesson plans and activities suitable for history, language arts, social studies, science, music, communications and technology classes.

Designed for students in grades 6-12, Sounds of History offers a variety of learning activities based on more than 140 sounds from the Smithsonian collection. The sounds cover 10 American historical eras stretching from pre-European contact to the present day. Each sound comes with individual activities that can be used as homework, class lessons, or extensions. A Smithsonian Certificate program encourages students to act as cultural research assistants, learning the history of a place or people using sounds, documents and images. bigchalk.com, New York, NY, www.bigchalk.com/bc/soh.

This article originally appeared in the 05/01/2001 issue of THE Journal.

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