As you prepare to head back to school, are you thinking of new ideas for opening class discussions or writing prompts? If so, we thought you might be interested in TalkBack Tuesdays, a new online feature from the Museum. Each Tuesday, a question we posed to visitors at the Museum is posted online, with two visitor comments in response, and an invitation for online visitors to share their ideas, too. Sample questions include:
This week in 1960, To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee was first published. What do you think is the most influential American novel of all time and why?
Responses: The Jungle by Upton Sinclair, because it changed labor rights and food quality testing; Uncle Tom's Cabin, it helped convince the US of the evil of slavery
This week in 1926, Allen Ginsberg, Poet Laureate of the Beat Generation, was born. Who do you think speaks for your generation?
Responses: John Lennon, Barack Obama
This week in 1886, President Grover Cleveland married Frances Folsom in a White House Ceremony, becoming the only president whose wedding took place at the White House. Would you vote for an unmarried president? Why?
Responses: Yes, you don't need a spouse to be successful!; No, because when the White House burned in 1814, the First Lady was able to save all the documents
Might you use questions like these in your classroom? If so, check out the TalkBack Tuesday website, and invite your students to comment online!
National Museum of American Histoyr