Blog

FREE Upcoming Professional Development Sessions!

Saturday, January 18, 2014 10am - 12pm:
Learning Through Collections 101: Using Objects in Your Classroom
Turn your classroom into an interactive space where students take learning into their own hands – literally!  Practice new teaching strategies that prepare you to bring real artifacts and specimens into the classroom.  Sit down with a Museum Educator to map out the best way to enhance your curriculum through Museum connections.  Leave with new skills, teacher-created activities, and materials from the Harris Learning Collection to inspire your students about Earth’s natural and cultural diversity.

Saturday, February 15, 2014 10am - 12pm:
Do You Speak Science?: Using Objects to Develop ELLs' Academic Language
The hands-on study of science provides an amazing opportunity for English Language Learners to learn and practice cross-disciplinary academic language that will serve them in all subject areas! Find out how object-based learning can scaffold students in this process, and collaborate with museum educators and colleagues to incorporate these object-based supports into your curriculum.

Saturday, March 15, 2014 10am - 12pm:
More than a Pretty Flower: Teaching NGSS with Plants
Field Museum scientist Matt VonKonrat will share how scientists have used the 3 million plant specimens in our botany collection to study evolution, the effects of climate change, and more! Learn about how students can use botany specimens and models for their own research as they explore Next Generation Science Standards Crosscutting Concepts, such as cause and effect; systems; stability and change.  Finally, discover how students can collaborate with scientists in analyzing real data through citizen science.

Saturday, April 5, 2014 10am - 12pm:
STEAM at The Field: Sketching and Science
Explore how art and science connect with Field Museum artist-in-residence, Peggy MacNamara.  We will practice using skills of observation both to bring to life an animal to life as a piece of artwork and to gain further scientific knowledge about that specimen.  Get ready to share a new app “The Art and Science of Birds” with your students and use it as a tool to enhance both the sciences and the arts!

*Pre-registration is required. To register, email harris@fieldmuseum.org.

Date: 01/14/2014
Categories:
0 Comments( click here to post a comment)

Migratory Bird Treaty Act

Recently we have learned that many of our bird-related materials fall under the protection of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, which affects some members who may wish to borrow certain bird specimens. Protected bird specimens may now only be borrowed by educational institutions that are open to the general public and are non-profit (such as a public or charter school), but may not be borrowed by private individuals or institutions unless a special permit is obtained.

Many of our specimens may have been collected before they were included into the Migratory Bird Treaty Act and are therefore exempt from this rule, but we are currently in the process of sifting through which birds are "free as a bird" to be checked out by any member and which are protected. While we are still determining the extent to which this act affects our materials, we have marked any bird Exhibit Case with a disclaimer on the bird's detail page on our online catalog. 

Thank you for your understanding while we research our specimens and how they fit into the Act. In the meantime, check out our wide array of other Exhibit Cases and Experience Boxes!

The N. W. Harris Learning Collection Team

Date: 01/07/2014
Categories:
0 Comments( click here to post a comment)

Learning through Collections Professional Development

We have set the dates and topics for our slate of 2013-2014 Learning through Collections Professional Development sessions!

Saturday, September 21 I’ll Fly Away: How Migratory Birds Affect Chicago
Saturday, October 19 Learning Through Collections 101: Using Objects in Your Classroom
Saturday, November 16 Life and Death in Ancient Egypt
Saturday, January 18 Learning Through Collections 101: Using Objects in Your Classroom
Saturday, February 15 Topic TBD. Have a suggestion?  Email harris@fieldmuseum.org
Saturday, March 15 More Than a Pretty Flower: Teaching NGSS with Plants
Saturday, April 5 STEAM at The Field: Sketching and Science 

Pre-registration is required. To register, email us at harris@fieldmuseum.org.
 

Date: 08/07/2013
Categories:
0 Comments( click here to post a comment)

The N. W. Harris Learning Collection featured in the press!

“What is this place?” is the awestruck question commonly muttered by Field Museum visitors who unwittingly wander into the tucked-away, ground floor entrance to the N. W. Harris Learning Collection. Sometimes they are drawn in by a glimpse of our beautiful sea life diorama, or sometimes Harris Learning Collection evangelists: members, staff, and volunteers, point them in our direction. Once they find out more about the program, their reaction is always the same: “How have I lived in Chicago for so long without knowing about this great resource?”

One such visitor, Dave Newbart, was awaiting the opening of the Crown Family PlayLab with his family when a PlayLab staff member told him to check out the Harris Learning Collection. As an active parent who loves conducting at-home investigations with his two kids, Dave was thrilled at the great resource he had found. As a senior editor for DNAinfo.com, a digital neighborhood news source in Chicago, he felt the responsibility to spread the word about this hidden treasure. A few weeks later, he sent over Lizzie Schiffman, a reporter for DNAinfo.com, to write a story featuring the N. W. Harris Learning Collection. You can read her story, “Field Museum Exhibits for Rent? Borrow a Piece of History For $10” online at http://www.dnainfo.com/chicago/20130422/downtown/field-museum-exhibits-for-your-living-room.

The story includes a brief history of the program, as well as a video tour of the Harris Learning Collection led by Lindsey Snyder, N. W. Harris Learning Collection Administrator. Please share this story with your friends! Let’s continue to spread the word about this “hidden gem” at The Field Museum.

Date: 05/28/2013
Categories:
0 Comments( click here to post a comment)

March and April 2013 Professional Development Sessions

Upcoming FREE Professional Development Sessions

People, Places and Their Things: Using Artifacts to Explore World Cultures 
Saturday, March 16, 2013
10:00am - 12:00pm
 
How can artifact study deepen our understanding of people and cultures? Explore how Field Museum anthropologist Dr. Chapurukha Kusimba is conducting cutting-edge research with our African collections. With the guidance of a Museum educator learn how to integrate the study of artifacts with your curriculum. Be among the first to explore two Africa-themed Experience Boxes about to be re-released into the Harris Learning Collection catalog. 
 
Small Creatures, Big Ideas: Using Insects to Address Next Generation Science Standards
Saturday, April 6, 2013  
10:00am - 12:00pm 
 
Use insects and spiders to address the new Next Generation Science Standards! Come explore the research—and behind-the-scenes collection areas—with Collections Assistant Jim Louderman, “the man who mistook his tarantula for a hat.” Then work with a Field Museum educator to learn how to share the wonder of “bug science” with your students, with a focus on the practices, crosscutting concepts and core ideas of NGSS. 
 
Pre-registration required - email harris@fieldmuseum.org
 
Both of these sessions are designed for teachers/school specialists/administrators at all grade levels; great for both teachers who are new to the Harris Learning Collection or returning members. Feel free to share this invitation with your colleagues!
 
2 CPDUs, Free with pre-registration
Free parking available
 
PLUS - One lucky winner will leave with a FREE MEMBERSHIP to the N. W. Harris Learning Collection
 

Date: 03/06/2013
Categories:
0 Comments( click here to post a comment)

Learning Through Collections 101

Upcoming FREE Professional Development at the N. W. Harris Learning Collection

 

Learning Through Collections 101 - Using Objects in your Classroom

Turn your classroom into an interactive space where students take learning into their own hands - literally!  Dig into what is means to teach through objects at the N. W. Harris Learning Collection at The Field Museum.  Prepare yourself to bring real artifacts and specimens into the classroom by learning techniques for teaching with objects at this professional development session.  What's more - you'll have the chance to sit down with a Museum Educator to map out the best way to enhance your curriculum with museum connections.  Leave this morning session equipped with new skills and ready-made activities and items from the Harris Learning Collection to inspire your students about Earth's natural and cultural diversity.

For teachers/administrators at all grade levels.

2 CPDUs

Saturday January 26, 2013 OR Saturday February 23, 2013

10:00am - 12:00pm

Free

Preregistration required - email harris@fieldmuseum.org

Free parking available

PLUS - One lucky winner will go home with a FREE MEMBERSHIP to the N. W. Harris Learning Collection

 

Date: 01/05/2013
Categories:
0 Comments( click here to post a comment)

A Brief History of the N. W. Harris Learning Collection at The Field Museum

 

“This rare donation to the cause of education and public welfare will give life and light to the routine of the schools, instill love of nature in the scholars, make for good citizenship and constantly increase the friends and frequenters of the museum.— F. J. Skiff, Director of the Field Museum of Natural History, 1912

 

In 1911 Norman Wait Harris, philanthropist and founder of Harris Trust and Savings Bank, announced that he would give a donation of bonds to the Field Museum of Natural History to start a “public school extension”. In 1912, a team of curators and taxidermists began building Exhibit Cases, still used today, to be delivered to Chicago’s public schools. As of 1914, 286 cases had been created and the program was inaugrated as the The Harris Public School Extension of the Field Museum. In its first full year of operations, the Exhibit Cases traveled to 326 schools—essentially all public schools in the city of Chicago.

 

The program was an exhibitor at the 1915 Panama-Pacific International Exposition and met great acclaim from visitors and museums around the world.  The Harris Extension returned to Chicago with the grand prize ribbon – ask Harris Learning Collection staff to point out the ribbon on display next time you visit!

 

Between 1914 and 1920, the Harris Extension added additional Exhibit Cases each year, reaching 677 cases in the inventory.  These cases rotated through the Chicago Public Schools and were hung on the wall – often outside the main office – for all students to see. 

 

In the early 1920s the Harris Extension expanded its audience and for the first time allowed schools outside of the city’s public school system and other organizations to borrow materials, provided these schools and organizations were located in the city of Chicago.  By 1931, 445 schools were included in the rotation of Exhibit Cases.  Each school would display 40 different cases throughout the course of the school year.  It is estimated that more than 500,000 students viewed the Exhibit Cases each year. 

 

As the program grew, it continued to be recognized as a leader in the field of museum education.  The program was exhibited at multiple fairs and expos across the country including the 1926 Sesquicentennial Celebration in Pennsylvania.

 

It was not until 1975 that the Harris Educational Loan Program (as it was renamed) began offering its services to suburban school districts.  Also in the 1970s, a new addition to the inventory appeared – Experience Boxes.  These boxes included objects that could be touched by students.  The boxes addressed many topics including Illinois prairies, Chicago-area geology, African cultures and more.   

 

Today there are over 1,500 items in the inventory of the N. W. Harris Learning Collection.  These items are available to anyone – teacher, parent, enthusiast – who becomes a member of the program.  The materials are designed to engage learners of all types in scientific practices, develop critical thinking skills and pique curiosity about Earth’s natural and cultural diversity.

 

 

 

 

Date: 09/13/2012
Categories:
0 Comments( click here to post a comment)



«1»  1 - 7 (of 7 posts)

© 2012 The Field Museum, All Rights Reserved.