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Using Historical Photographs to Learn About the Past Tina Johnson Grade Level: 5th UNIT DESCRIPTION Students will analyze historic photos in order to make inferences about the past. They will then compare and contrast the historic photo to a modern photo and record similarities and differences. Students will use this information to participate in a discussion about the impact on the community and reasons for changes. LESSON CONTENT SUMMARY During the course of this lesson, students will be introduced to how to analyze a historical photo by studying the photo, dividing it into quadrants, and then making observations about the people, objects, and activities shown on the photo. Students will use comparison and contrast skills to compare two photos and then discuss their similarities and differences. They should be able to draw upon the data presented in the photographs to make inferences about how the community may have been impacted, benefits and drawbacks, how it has changed over time, benefits and drawbacks benefits and drawbacks and how these changes may have come about. LESSON OBJECTIVES Students will be able to: • Make observations about photographs using a Photo Analysis Worksheet; • Compare and contrast historic photo to current photo; • Make inferences about a photo based on observations; • Record observations; • Record similarities and differences; • Share ideas and observations with others. HISTORICAL THINKING STANDARDS • Standard 2H: Utilize visual, mathematical, and quantitative data. • Standard 3A: Compare and contrast differing sets of ideas. 367 • Standard 3C: Analyze cause-and-effect relationships and multiple causation including the importance of the individual, the influence of ideas. • Standard 3J: Hypothesize the influence of the past. SOUTH DAKOTA SOCIAL STUDIES GRADE STANDARDS: GRADE 5 • 5.G.2.1: Students are able to explain the interrelationships among the natural environments, the movement of peoples, and the development of societies. LEARNING MATERIALS AND STRATEGIES • Estimated Time: One to two sessions of about one hour each (depending on class size and available time) • Necessary Materials: Historic photographs of the Hotel Alex Johnson (enough for 1 per group), current photographs of the Hotel Alex Johnson (enough for 1 per group), Photo Analysis Worksheets (1 per student) available from http://www.archives.gov/digital_classroom/lessons/analysis_worksheet/photo.ht ml , Comparison and Contrast Worksheet (1 per student, any Venn Diagram format you prefer is fine), a copy of each of the photos used on a Promethean Board flipchart or overhead transparencies (for group share), any historical photo for example use, Promethean Board or overhead • *** Option: This lesson can be done with any historical photograph. If two versions from different time periods of the same photo are not available, just omit the comparison and contrast activity and go on with the discussion. • Resources: • Alex Johnson Hotel History." Hotel Alex Johnson. http://www.alexjohnson.com/ info/history.html (accessed March 21, 2009) (photograph of building) • "Educators and Students." National Archives. http://www.archives.gov/education/ index.html (accessed June 6, 2009). • Porte, Chas. E., and I. Whiteson. "Alex Johnson: The Wonder Hotel of the West with Real Western Hospitality." Rapid City Journal, August 9, 1928. (photograph) • Smith, Rex Alan. The Carving of Mount Rushmore. New York: Abbeville Publishing Group, 1985, (picture from page 279). • Strain, David F. Black Hills Hay Camp. Rapid City: Dakota West Books & Fenske Printing Inc., 1989, (photograph from page 195) • Assessment: Assessment will be based on completion of Photo Analysis Worksheet, Comparison and Contrast worksheet, and teacher observation during work time and group share time. INSTRUCTIONAL PROCESS I will begin the unit with a copy of the picture from page 279 from The Carving of Mount Rushmore by Rex Alan Smith scanned and displayed on the Promethean Board. There will also be a copy of the Photo Analysis Worksheet recreated on poster board displayed on the whiteboard next to the picture. 368 I will then introduce the idea of analyzing a historical photo, and why we might do this. I would ask the students “How might analyzing this historical photo help us? Why would we do this?” Call on volunteers to answer the question guiding them to the realization historical photos are primary documents and can help us understand the past, understand what might have happened then, and to gain different perspectives about history. Then as a class, step through the Photo Analysis Worksheet using the Mt. Rushmore picture. Fill in Step 1, Section A on the chart on the poster board with ideas generated by the students. Using the pen tool on the Promethean Board (or overhead transparency) divide the picture into quadrants and have students share observations to fill in section B. of the worksheet. When there are a few observations listed, or you think students get the idea, go on to Step 2, and finally, complete Step 3. Divide the students into groups of 3-4, pass out a Photo Analysis Worksheet to each student along with a historical photo of the Hotel Alex Johnson. Students work in groups to complete their Photo Analysis Worksheets. Monitor as needed using questioning to guide students along as they work. As groups finish, give them a more up-to-date picture of the hotel and a Comparison/Contrast worksheet (one per student). They will then compare the two pictures and complete the worksheet. When all groups are finished with both activities (or close to finished), bring the class together and have a whole-group discussion on what they found out. Display the photographs used on the Promethean Board (or overhead) and invite groups to share their observations for Step 1, Section B, moving on then to Step 2 and finally, Step 3. Follow up this discussion with another discussion focusing on the following: • How might the Hotel Alex Johnson have impacted the surrounding community? • What do you think caused this hotel to be built? • What do you think were the benefits of having this hotel in Rapid City back then? • What might the drawbacks have been? • Based on the photos, how has the hotel changed since it was first built? • What might be some causes for the changes? • How do you think the hotel impacts the community today? • Allow time for any final thoughts, ideas, etc. 369
"Using Historical Photographs to Learn About the Past Tina Johnson "