Teacher Guides and Resources

Discover how to integrate American art into your classroom

Educational resources from SAAM use artworks as invitations to explore historical eras, literary themes, and connections to the present day. Contextualized within the people, movements and stories of the United States, these artworks provide rich opportunities to uncover complexities and perspectives and put new knowledge to use.

The American Experience in the Classroom

Investigate paired works of art that bring to life key moments in our nation's history.

John Singleton Copley, Mrs. George Watson, 1765, oil on canvas

Investigate paired works of art that bring to life key moments in our nation's history. Explore the thematic threads that connect artworks across historical eras.

Primary Subject and Grade: US History 5-12 Primary Subjects and Grades: US History 5-12, Language Arts 5-12, Visual Arts 9-12, Civics 9-12
Components: Contextual Essays, Primary Sources, Literary Connections, Observation and Interpretation Activity, Media, Interactive Timeline, Glossary, Curriculum Connections, Core Concepts
Standards: U.S. History Content Standards, Historical Thinking Standards

Oh Freedom!

African American Civil Rights In American Art

James VanDerZee, Evening Attire, 1922, gelatin silver print

Drawing connections among art, history, and social change, Oh Freedom! provides educators with tools to help students re-imagine and re-interpret the long struggle for civil rights, justice, and equality in fresh ways.

Primary Subject and Grade: US History 5-12
Secondary Subject and Grade: Civics 9-12, Language Arts 5-12, Visual Arts K-12
Components: Images, Background Contextual Information, Artist Bios, Audio/Video, Interactive Timeline, Lesson Plans, Glossary, Bibliographies
Standards: U.S. History, Civics, Language Arts, Visual Arts

Teacher Guides

Museum educator speaking to students

Teacher Guides are listed with corresponding standards and grade levels; most are in PDF format. Student worksheets and other printable resources are also available. Be sure to check back periodically or sign up for our Teacher Resources e-mail list (select "Teacher Resources" checkbox).

Meet the Artist: Video Series