Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Digital Spotlight: Behind the Veil

BEHIND THE VEIL is a digital collection documenting African American Life in the Jim Crow South.
Contents: Housed at the Duke University Libraries, this collection includes 410 recorded oral histories tracing African-American life in the segregated American South through the mid 20th century. Users can locate oral histories by interview state, birth state, interviewee, gender, or occupation. Audio interviews include a transcript.
Classroom Connections: Teachers will find that these interviews provide personal insights into life during the Jim Crow era. Students will be attracted to the audio format. Ask students to listen to an interview and compare it with the experience of others in their small group.
Featured Digital Objects:
Dora Strong Dennis, Domestic Worker…/behindtheveil_btvct01115/
Easter Hinton Sanders, Educator…/behindtheveil_btvnc03032/
Booker T. Federick, Day Laborer…/behindtheveil_btvct03034/

Monday, April 24, 2017

Website Review: Performing Arts

PERFORMING ARTS from Google Cultural Institute provides 360 degree views of the world’s greatest performers on stage.
The Performing Arts element of Google’s Cultural Institute provides access to a series of performances on stages around the globe. Each short performance can be viewed from different camera angles. Performances can explore the areas of music, opera, theater, dance, and performance art.
Librarians will find these interactive experiences provide an amazing introduction to different types of performing arts. Ask students to watch one in each category and compare the different forms of art.
To visit the website, go to

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Book Review: The Radiant Child

THE RADIANT CHILD by Javaka Steptoe is an award-winning picture book telling the story of artist Jean-Michel Basquiat.
Winner of the 2017 Caldecott Medal for children’s illustrator, this biography shares the true story of a boy who dreamt of becoming an artist. The book concludes with a biographical sketch, information about the artist’s work, and a note from the author/illustrator.
Like artist Jean-Michel Basquiat, Steptoe used a variety of found materials to create the artwork for this fascinating work.
Librarians will find this picture book to be an effective tool for teaching about biographies along with an inspirational resource for young artists.
To learn more about the author/illustrator, go to
Published by Little Brown, an imprint of Hachette. ARC courtesy of the publisher.

Friday, April 21, 2017

Digital Spotlight: Reading: Harvard Views

READING: HARVARD VIEWS OF READERS, READERSHIP, and READING HISTORY is an online source for exploring the intellectual, cultural, and political history of reading.
Contents: Sharing historical holdings of the Harvard Libraries, this unique collection includes annotated books by authors like John Keats and Herman Melville. Library records show what people like Emerson, Longfellow, and Thoreau were reading. Sections include learning to read, reading collectively, reading on one’s own, and collection highlights.
Classroom Connections: Librarians will find this collection of professional interest. However, it would also be useful to teens and teachers in the area of history and English.
To visit the collection, go to

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Digital Spotlight: Witness to the Early American Experience

WITNESS TO THE EARLY AMERICAN EXPERIENCE is a digital collection documenting eyewitnesses to the American Revolution in the New York City area.
Contents: This large collection contains works from the New York Historical Society, New York University, and other organizations. Users can go directly to the archives and conduct a search or explore the featured document. The learning resources section provides modules that explore religion, education, music, work, and health and medicine.
Classroom Connections: This collection would be useful for connecting primary sources to the study of the American Revolution. Use the tour for a quick look at the history of New York City and lots of fascinating examples.
Featured Digital Objects:
Paper and Printing in Colonial America
Mapping the Revolution
To visit the collection, go to

Monday, April 17, 2017

Website Review: Ice & Sky

ICE & SKY is an interactive website telling the story of climate change through history.
Told in six parts, this engaging website contains text, video, audio, animation, and documents to explore climate and environmental issues. Users can create their own website on climate change using the materials from the project.
In addition to the interactive program, the website features educational booklets, videos, and other resources that can be downloaded for classroom use.
Librarians will find connections to life and earth science, history, geography, economics, and more.
To visit the website, go to

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Book Review: The Tutors

THE TUTORS: KINGS, QUEENS, SCRIBES, and FERRETS! by Marcia Williams is a highly illustrated informational book about life in Tutor times.
Williams brings the 15th century alive for children through a series one and two page comic spreads that explore the people, places, and events surrounding the Tudor times. Each page is chuck-full of interesting facts and entertaining stories.
Librarians will find this book to be a useful tool in the history curriculum. It will be of particular interest to children who enjoy the use of borders for added information and those who are attracted to comic-book style approaches. Use this book to jumpstart a deeper investigation of people like Queen Elizabeth I, Henry VII, and Christopher Columbus.
To learn more about the author, go to
Published by Candlewick on October 11, 2016. ARC courtesy of the publisher.