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Multicultural Canada: Wayang Kulit - Lynn Copeland, Simon Fraser University

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3 to 12
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This unique site by Multicultural Canada is part of a digitization project that aims to tell the stories of the cultures that make up Canada. Other modules include Chinese, ...more
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This unique site by Multicultural Canada is part of a digitization project that aims to tell the stories of the cultures that make up Canada. Other modules include Chinese, Japanese, Scottish, Indonesian, Italian, Jewish, Vietnamese,and Pakistan collections are included in the learning modules. Detailed lesson plans, related resources, with rubrics are included. IN this module, Simon Fraser University shares their collection of Wayang Kulit, or shadow puppetry from Indonesia. Wayang Kulit often portrays moral or political messages. The university featured the exhibit, Crossing Oceans, Crossing Cultures, which includes the shadow puppets and stories about good and evil, respect, duty, friendship, and loyalty. The website shows some of the Wayang Kulit shadow puppets, as well as providing information on traditional stories. Photographs of several intricate shadow puppets are included. Ideas for projects using a variety of free downloads are suggested. There is also an introductory video.

tag(s): canada (30), myths and legends (25), readers theater (17), stories and storytelling (33)

In the Classroom

In language arts classes, study universal stories and myths while discovering the culture of Indonesia and shadow puppetry. Dramatize the elements of good versus evil, characterization, and plot. Discover a unique twist to Readers' Theater. Storyboarding opportunities allow for a simpler construction of a story performance with fewer background scenery or props necessary. Sound and musical accompaniments can add to the creativity of the performance. Reluctant readers through gifted learners will enjoy the flexibility and creativity of the art of shadow puppetry.

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Important Dates and Events in History - Hisdates.com

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6 to 12
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Find out what happened on any date in history with this informative site. Each event is listed with a short description. Historic events are listed chronologically from oldest to current...more
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Find out what happened on any date in history with this informative site. Each event is listed with a short description. Historic events are listed chronologically from oldest to current times. (Some dates are several pages long, be sure to click the "read more" link to continue to newer dates.) Information includes birthdays, discoveries, events, and more. Searches by specific years, months, and famous birthdays. You are able to add events and comments. Note that the general public can also add comments, so preview before projecting in class!
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): calendars (44), timelines (62)

In the Classroom

Use this site to display an interesting "this day in history" on your interactive whiteboard or projector each day. Use as a resource for students to research events during historical time periods being studied in class. Create a scavenger hunt to review dates in history - give students a list of events and have students find them on the calendar. For a more in=depth experience, share TeachersFirst's Dates That Matter, then have students create their own set of Dates That Matter style question prompts and provide a "Why Does it Matter" response for one of the events found here. Share their student-created Dates That Matter in PowerPoint slides or using an online presentation tool.

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Pictures of the Floating World - National Gallery of Victoria

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5 to 12
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At Floating World your students will do more than create a video of their own story. They will learn about Japanese history and culture through the explanations of the classic ...more
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At Floating World your students will do more than create a video of their own story. They will learn about Japanese history and culture through the explanations of the classic Japanese art work. There is a demonstration video to show students how to make their own movie and a pdf file to download 64 cards so students can work together to rough out story ideas before starting their animation. On each page of the site you will also find a button marked "Add this page." This allows you to build a useful resource to map out a story.

tag(s): art history (70), drawing (78), folktales (65)

In the Classroom

You will have to know how to type and drag and drop the images, backgrounds, and sounds you want in your animated story.

When saving the video you are also asked for your name. You will want to give the students a code to use instead of their name.

Use this site to make animated short stories in any content area. Have students create new events for a literary character or tell the story of a famous person. Post student work to your classroom website or blog for students to use at home for review and for parents to view. Be sure to share the presentations on your projector or interactive whiteboard at school.

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Create a Timeline - Ourtimelines.com

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1 to 12
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This online tool lets you create a timeline of an individual's life using dates from 1000 AD to the present year. Enter the person's name and dates, add events (historic ...more
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This online tool lets you create a timeline of an individual's life using dates from 1000 AD to the present year. Enter the person's name and dates, add events (historic or personal) and their beginning/ending dates, and click the "generate" button.

tag(s): timelines (62)

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Kids Web Japan - Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Grades
3 to 6
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Take your students on a virtual tour of Japan with this beautifully designed site that investigates Japanese culture from a kid's perspective. It's easy to navigate and filled with...more
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Take your students on a virtual tour of Japan with this beautifully designed site that investigates Japanese culture from a kid's perspective. It's easy to navigate and filled with easy-to-understand text, pictures, and interactive surprises. Complete a virtual origami airplane, compose a tune on the koto, and learn to say some basic everyday phrases in Japanese. There is SO much to see and do on this site. Provide some direction for your students before turning them loose.

tag(s): cultures (105), japan (61), japanese (42)

In the Classroom

Use this site as a learning center or station during a unit on Japanese culture. Because there is a lot of content on the site, we recommend creating a guide to help highlight what is most important for students. For help creating easy graphic organizers, we recommend using Graphic Organizer Maker, (reviewed here).
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Japan: Memories of a Secret Empire - PBS

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7 to 12
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Explore 16th to 19th century-Japan with this interactive and engaging site. Visitors can enter the city of Edo (the site of present day Tokyo), meet the artisans who lived and ...more
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Explore 16th to 19th century-Japan with this interactive and engaging site. Visitors can enter the city of Edo (the site of present day Tokyo), meet the artisans who lived and worked there, and participate in some cultural activities. Students can create a virtual woodblock print and interact with a variety of distinctive musical instruments. A virtual trip down the busy Tokaido highway brings students in contact with fellow travelers as well as the many merchants and tradesmen whose shops and inns lined the roadside. The interactive timeline feature allows students to view Japanese history against the backdrop of world events. Three helpful classroom guides, aligned to national standards, can be downloaded.

tag(s): japan (61), japanese (42)

In the Classroom

Now here is a great site to accompany a World History classroom studying early modern Japan. This site would make a great learning center or station - if so we recommend creating a follow-along for students using a program such as Graphic Organizer Maker, (reviewed here). There are also lesson plans connected to National Standards that Social Studies teachers should take advantage of!
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Modern Haiku

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6 to 12
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Fans of this Japanese poetry form will find fascinating samples and other haiku trivia at this on-line journal. ...more
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Fans of this Japanese poetry form will find fascinating samples and other haiku trivia at this on-line journal.

tag(s): japan (61), japanese (42), poetry (228)

In the Classroom

Try it for samples of contemporary haiku efforts, or submit the best works from your class.

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Japanese American Internment Curriculum - National Japanese American Historical Society

Grades
6 to 12
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Developed by the National Japanese American Historical Society, this page is a well-organized meta-list of lessons relating to the internment of Japanese Americans during World War...more
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Developed by the National Japanese American Historical Society, this page is a well-organized meta-list of lessons relating to the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II. The lessons include material for all grade levels, and they address the historical, literary, and constitutional aspects of these Americans' experiences. Today's students can learn much from this experience.

tag(s): constitution (79), japan (61), japanese (42), world war 2 (142)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of the free lesson plans and activities offered on this site! Save this site as a favorite for easy use and retrieval for future unit planning. Social studies teachers will love this one!

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World War II Relocation Camps - National Park Service

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9 to 12
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Part of the National Park Service "Teaching with Historic Places" series, this site uses the Manzanar Japanese-American internment camp as a starting point for an exploration of the...more
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Part of the National Park Service "Teaching with Historic Places" series, this site uses the Manzanar Japanese-American internment camp as a starting point for an exploration of the internment activities that took place during World War II. As with other lessons in this series, the lesson asks students to interpret archival photos and draw conclusions from the images and contemporary accounts of the internment.

tag(s): japan (61), japanese (42), world war 2 (142)

In the Classroom

This is a very detailed and intricate lesson that can easily last a few days. However it is very informative and provides information about Japanese internment camps that is often brushed over in the book. Take advantage of this great lesson plan during a unit on WWII or discrimination in the United States.

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Battle of Midway - National Park Service

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6 to 12
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This lesson from the National Park Service series "Teaching with Historic Places" outlines the background for the outbreak of the war with Japan and uses maps and historical photos...more
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This lesson from the National Park Service series "Teaching with Historic Places" outlines the background for the outbreak of the war with Japan and uses maps and historical photos to teach about the battle of Midway and the island's strategic importance in World War II. This site could be a nice add-on to a study of World War II, Japan, or the geography of the Pacific region.

tag(s): world war 2 (142)

In the Classroom

Teachers will appreciate the inclusion of printable versions of the maps.

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Face to Face - Stories from the Aftermath of Infamy - ITVS

Grades
9 to 12
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You will need a high speed connection to use this site, but those who have one will find it an insightful collection of spoken narratives dealing with reactions to the ...more
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You will need a high speed connection to use this site, but those who have one will find it an insightful collection of spoken narratives dealing with reactions to the September 11 attacks from Muslim and Japanese Americans. While the experiences of these two groups vary significantly, these audio essays raise important issues in a thoughtful way that invites further discussion and examination.

tag(s): japan (61), terrorism (49)

In the Classroom

This site could be used as a "trigger" for a high school history or government class. Teachers will want to preview this material, and should be prepared for lively discussions that it will likely generate.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Origami Learning Center

Grades
4 to 12
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Part of a far larger site, this section offers lots of instructions on the basics of origami, the Japanese art of paper folding. There are examples galore, along with information ...more
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Part of a far larger site, this section offers lots of instructions on the basics of origami, the Japanese art of paper folding. There are examples galore, along with information on terminology, reading folding instructions, and sources for origami patterns. If you're looking for an art activity that requires very little equipment, try this one.

tag(s): japan (61), origami (17), paper folding (5)

In the Classroom

Use this site as an supplement to the book "One Thousand Paper Cranes." After the students have completed the book, use some class time to allow students to create their own cranes in class. Introduce the site on the interactive whiteboard before allowing students to explore it further in cooperative learning groups. Once students have created a crane, encourage them to try more complicated shapes and figures! This is a great way to lead into a conversation on the significance of origami and why it was so important in the book.

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Japanese Americans and the Constitution - Smithsonian Institution

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6 to 12
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The Smithsonian presents this nicely-designed site describing the internment and discrimination against Japanese Americans during World War II. Students can listen to an audio introduction...more
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The Smithsonian presents this nicely-designed site describing the internment and discrimination against Japanese Americans during World War II. Students can listen to an audio introduction which provides a summary of the events of the period, and sets the stage for the larger presentation. This one is well worth a visit.

tag(s): constitution (79), japan (61), japanese (42), world war 2 (142)

In the Classroom

This site is a great way to address the topics of racism and the Japanese internment in your classroom. Teachers can either save this and use it as a learning center or have the students do it together on classroom computers. Don't teach this topic without looking at this site first!

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Tokugawa Japan

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9 to 12
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This site is devoted to the study of Japan in the 17th-19th centuries, during the Tokugawa Shogunate. Written at college level, it documents the cultural, political, and military history...more
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This site is devoted to the study of Japan in the 17th-19th centuries, during the Tokugawa Shogunate. Written at college level, it documents the cultural, political, and military history of the period in significant detail. Good resource for serious high school research, or for teachers who need background on the evolution of Japanese culture, especially regarding Japanese reactions to Western influence.

tag(s): 1800s (44), japan (61)

In the Classroom

Use this site as a resource for students working on a research paper or project. Save the site on your teacher web page to allow students to access the site in and out of the classroom. A lot of text, but a great resource for a World History II classroom!

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Residence Of The Prime Minister Of Japan

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9 to 12
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Special features: bilingual - This site has info on the Prime Minister of Japan. It includes his reports, speeches, policies, press conferences, budgets, etc. It also contains statistical...more
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Special features: bilingual - This site has info on the Prime Minister of Japan. It includes his reports, speeches, policies, press conferences, budgets, etc. It also contains statistical information on Japan which may be useful. One interesting area is the opinion section.

tag(s): japan (61), statistics (122)

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Nippon in the World

Grades
9 to 12
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This Japanese site offers a collection of classical Japanese artwork, suitable for study as part of an exposure to Japanese history. The interface isn't the greatest, and the images...more
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This Japanese site offers a collection of classical Japanese artwork, suitable for study as part of an exposure to Japanese history. The interface isn't the greatest, and the images contain watermarks, but the site works fine as an example of the unique nature of Japanese artistic representations.

tag(s): japan (61)

In the Classroom

Use these images in a picture walk around the classroom to introduce or review a unit on some aspect of Japanese culture. Select 10-15 images to be hung around the classroom, with students rotating between them every 30-60 seconds. Have students fill out quickly what they observe and infer about each image, with the intentions of connecting each image to an essential understanding about Japanese culture. For help creating easy and quick graphic organizers for the activity, we recommend a site such as Graphic Organizer Maker, (reviewed here).

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The Japanese-American Historical Society

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6 to 12
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Though its focus is by no means entirely on World War II, that war was no doubt the most trying time for Japanese Americans. This site contains numerous resources on ...more
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Though its focus is by no means entirely on World War II, that war was no doubt the most trying time for Japanese Americans. This site contains numerous resources on the experiences of Japanese Americans during the war, as well as other resources highlighting the accomplishments of Japanese Americans and their efforts to preserve their ethnic heritage.

tag(s): japan (61), japanese (42), world war 2 (142)

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65 History Twitter Feeds - Glenn Wiebe

Grades
8 to 12
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This site offers a wonderful list of Twitter feeds to consider if you are just starting out or if you are adding to your feed related to history. The list ...more
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This site offers a wonderful list of Twitter feeds to consider if you are just starting out or if you are adding to your feed related to history. The list includes the Twitter name with a link and a short description. Feeds include the Library of Congress, quotes and sayings from Thomas Jefferson, and HistoryDay (see what happened on this day in history). Feeds are separated into categories such as media, educators and students, and military to help navigate the different types.

tag(s): congress (33), history day (23), twitter (50)

In the Classroom

Create a classroom twitter account and choose feeds to follow that relate to classroom studies. Assign different students to follow the feed each week to summarize and review. Challenge students to find other history Twitter feeds to follow. Have students create a Twitter account as a historical figure as part of research projects. Looking for more ways to use twitter in the classroom? Read more about Twitter from TeachersFirst's Twitter for Teachers page.

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Mapeas - mapeas.com

Grades
4 to 12
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Find news videos from around the world in a unique way. Mapeas video links are located on a Google Map. Go to the specific geographical area of the world you ...more
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Find news videos from around the world in a unique way. Mapeas video links are located on a Google Map. Go to the specific geographical area of the world you want and click on the links. Larger dots contain more videos in that area. There are dots that indicate a news story in business, entertainment, or general. Continue to click on the dots until there are actual videos to choose from. Stay informed with current events around the world with this site.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): maps (287)

In the Classroom

Use this site to find events occurring around the world. Share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Research about many of these events to understand the history, culture, and background of the problem or event. Research other such events that may have occurred elsewhere in the world. Report findings using a blog, wiki, or through class discussion. Not comfortable with wikis? Have no wiki worries - check out the TeachersFirst's Wiki Walk-Through. Challenge students to find their own news stories and create a short multimedia project highlighting "the news" by creating a talking avatar using a photo or other image (legally permitted to be reproduced) to explain their news story that they researched. Use a site such as Blabberize (reviewed here).
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