Skip to Content

Art as Document: United States History or European History

Drawing on the rich collections of American or European art at the National Gallery, students will consider works of art as primary sources in the study of either United States or European history, combining them with historical maps, letters, photographs, or other materials to reveal the complex nature of history. Guided by museum educators, students will practice the skills necessary to the study of history, including close observation, chronological reasoning, comparing and contextualizing, group discussion, posing questions, and studying supplemental documents to form arguments. Students will also investigate the changing function of art, the artist’s role in society, and the ways in which a work of art’s meaning evolves over time. These exercises emphasize interpretation, analysis, and writing skills used on Advanced Placement exams and in the International Baccalaureate program, but the workshops are intended for all serious students of history.

Please choose either US History or European History. Teachers may register to bring their students on one of the following dates or on other mutually agreeable dates in April:

European History
Students will consider some of the social, political, and economic trends that led to the development of  Europe as we know it today.

Wednesday, April 6, 2016; 10:15 am–12:15 pm
Tuesday, April 12, 2016; 10:15 am–12:15 pm

United States History
The workshop will focus on the question, “What does it mean to be American?”

Wednesday, April 20, 2016; 10:15 am–12:15 pm
Tuesday, April 26, 2016; 10:15 am–12:15 pm

Registration is now closed.

Register for Art as Document
A minimum of 20 participants is required to reserve a date; up to 25 students may participate in a single workshop.