Have Your Courses Gone Digital? Free Resources to Enhance Student Learning

This Classroom ECONnections webinar will help you build your repertoire for middle and high school classrooms with engaging ways to teach history, economics, and personal finance. With digital resources including publications, interactive lessons, videos, and primary source documents from around the Federal Reserve System, you’ll be ready to teach some of the country’s most important events.

This webinar was recorded April 22, 2020.

Links to resources are in the transcript below.


Below is a full transcript of this video presentation. It has not been edited or reviewed for accuracy or readability.

Jean Roark: Hello and welcome to the Federal Reserve Classroom ECONnections Webinar. Our topic today covers digital courses and free resources to enhance student learning. I’m Jean Roark from the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, and I’ll be your facilitator.

Before turning our call over to our speakers, I’ll run through a couple of call logistics. If you haven’t joined us through the webinar, go ahead and grab that link you received after registering. For the best webinar experience, open the FAQ document, which can be found using the “Materials” button in the webinar player page. I’ll highlight just a couple of important notes for you.

You can listen to the audio through your PC speakers or through the phone. If you use the phone option, slides will not sync with audio unless you change one setting. You can do this by selecting the gray gear located in the upper right corner of the slide window or just above the speaker photo. From there, you should see a few options in the media chooser, and go ahead and select the phone option. Now, you only have to make that adjustment if you are listening to the audio through the phone.

You can expand the size of the slides today, and today that you can use the “Maximize” button in upper right corner of the slide window located on that webinar player page. And, of course, if you’d like a PDF version of today’s presentation, you can access it using the “Materials” button.

All right. We’ll be taking your questions today, so, please, at any time during our event, click that “Ask question” button and we’ll get your questions queued up for our presenters.

I’m going to turn to slide two just to go over our quick disclaimer. The views expressed in this webinar are those of the presenters and not necessarily the views of the Federal Reserve Banks of Philadelphia, St. Louis, Cleveland, or the Federal Reserve System.

And, of course, I forgot to do one quick thing, which was pose our first polling question. So that polling question should be in front of you, and go ahead and grab your mouse and respond to what grade level you teach. So do you teach elementary, middle school, high school, college, or other? So please do respond to that question, and while you’re responding, I’m going to turn the call over to Kris Bertelsen, the host of our call today.

Kris Bertelsen: Okay. Thank you very much, Jean, and thank you, everyone, for joining our ECONnections Webinar here today. This is the second of four webinars scheduled for 2020, and at the end of our call today here, I will give you a couple of dates for the fall sessions coming up. I’ll be introducing our speakers momentarily, but, first of all, I would like to thank you for joining us and for the work you’re doing for your students, even during these unprecedented times, and having to switch over to an online format and still providing quality materials and instruction. So thank you very much for what you’re doing.

Jean, if you could advance to the next slide, please, I’d just like to take a couple of moments to point out some resources for you from the St. Louis Fed. I work in the Little Rock branch of the St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank, and this is our landing page. One of our speakers today, my colleague, is from St. Louis as well. But I thought I’d just share briefly Econ Ed at the St. Louis Fed is our landing—this is our Econ Ed page. I’m showing you a screenshot of the landing page, and off to the right you see Econ Lowdown, which is a student portal that you sign up for to obtain a code and access to hundreds of free resources with assessment capability built in behind them. Those resources, again, are free. We won’t be speaking about this website directly today, but, of course, you can reach out to us if you have questions on using it. But it’s another tool for your repertoire.

Next slide, please, Jean. I have added another slide here of our system website, federalreserveeducation.org. This is a system clearinghouse of resources from across the Fed banks. Many of the resources you see today are on all of our websites, but this is one place to access several of those resources.

Next slide, please, Jean. And, finally, for the St. Louis websites, this is how you would reach out to us, and, again, my colleague will be speaking about that here in a few minutes.

I’m going to introduce our speakers next, and I’m so grateful for them to have taken time to present with us. The first speaker is Dr. Andrew Hill. I’ll introduce him, and he’ll turn things over to Eva Johnston, and Eva will speak and turn things over to Cariss Turner-Smith. I’m going to take a couple of minutes to give you the background, briefly, of each of our speakers.

Dr. Hill is the Economic Education Officer at the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia and an adjunct professor of economics at Temple University, where he’s taught a variety of courses in economics. He’s led the Philadelphia Fed’s Economic and Personal Finance Program since 2002. A national, multi-time award-winning educator, Andrew has served as a member of the writing committees for the National Standards for Financial Literacy, the test of financial literacy. He’s written a number of other curricula and has had articles published in several prestigious journals. Andrew is a frequent presenter on economic and personal finance education topics at the national and state level. Andrew earned his B.S., M.A., and Ph.D. in economics from the University of Delaware. Go Blue Hens!

Eva Johnston is a Senior Economic Education Specialist here with me at the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. As part of that team, Eva specializes in studying and creating materials at the intersection of economics and history. Eva will be sharing today about FRASER, the St. Louis Fed digital library. And before joining the St. Louis Fed, she taught high school history and economics in the St. Louis area for 28 years. And I’ll ad lib there a bit. A lot of that was AP level.

Then finally, our last, but certainly not least, speaker is Cariss Turner-Smith. She’s a Regional Education and Museum and Outreach Coordinator at the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, where she’s responsible for creating relationships with educators, students, and community groups throughout northern Ohio and western Pennsylvania. Cariss actually began her career with the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland in 2004 as an intern in the public information department and returned to the Cleveland Fed in 2018, joining the education and outreach team. Her favorite learning exhibit is “Your Face on Money.” A proud HBCU alumni from Alabama State University, Cariss holds a bachelor of science in business administration and finance as well as a bachelor of arts degree in communication and PR from Cleveland State University.

Again, thank you for joining us. Thank you for our presenters. And, Andrew, I’ll turn things over to you.

Andrew Hill: Thanks, Kris, I appreciate that. So if we go to the next slide, I just want to say how grateful I am for all the work that all the teachers on the line are doing and echo the comments that Kris made about that. We appreciate all that you’re doing for students and we hope that what we share with you today will be useful in your work with students online.

So today I’m going to talk a little bit about some of the economic education resources that we have available from the Philadelphia Fed. These are materials that are available on our website, and I just want to make sure that everyone’s aware of these various resources. I’ve developed also a few different ways that I hope might be useful for you to add them to your learning management systems that you’re using during this time.

So if we could go to the next slide, please. Everything that I’m talking about today I put in a livebinder, so the information in the bottom right of each of my slides is the login information for that live binder, so you can go to that URL, you use that access key, “teacheconweb,” and it will unlock the live binder, and then everything that I’m talking about today appears there. So I’ve done screen captures of the livebinder to explain to you what it is that I’m showing today.

So there’s three different things that I want to show you. I want to talk a little bit about the history of central banking publications that we’ve produced over the years, and I’ll explain what each of those are, what they cover. And for a couple of them, we have lessons. I’ll describe those for you a little bit. These are things that are in PDF form that are available on our website that you could then add to your learning management systems if you are interested in having readings for your students to do.

I’ll talk a little bit about these central banking video assignments that I’ve created, and I’ll do that after I’ve explained to you the YouTube videos that are linked in here. And so we have a product that we produced many years ago—I shouldn’t say many years ago—a number of years ago that includes a lot of content on history of central banking, and you can use those in your classrooms, use those online.

So let’s go to the next slide. So let’s talk a little bit about our publications. So we produced first—back at the 300th anniversary of Benjamin Franklin’s birth, we had a lecture from Farley Grubb at the University of Delaware, and he talks about Benjamin Franklin and the birth of a paper-money economy. We then adapted that into a print publication. This is available, as all of these are, in free class sets, and they’re also available in PDF form. So you can order a class set, a copy for every one of your students. We also produced a lesson that goes with Benjamin Franklin and the birth of a paper-money economy, and I’ve linked that in the live binder. So one of the good things there is there’s a bunch of discussion questions that we produced. There’s also a reading guide that goes along with this publication, and you could use the questions and material that are in that lesson—you could adapt those over to your learning management system. You wouldn’t be able to do the live active-learning-type stuff that’s in there. There’s a couple trading games in that lesson. But this is a great publication, where we talk about what observations Franklin made about paper money and its use in the United States. So he saw what happens when we have too little paper money and he also saw what happens when we have too much paper money: inflation.

We then went on to produce a number of other publications. One is on the First Bank of the United States, which, of course, is the bank that Hamilton envisioned starting as early as 1780 and eventually opened in 1791 in Philadelphia. We produced a publication for that. There’s also a print lesson that goes along with that. Again, you could make use of the reading guide that’s in there and also the discussion questions that are in there in your learning management system. We subsequently produced a booklet on the Second Bank of the United States. Here, again, now, this one doesn’t have a lesson, but this is available in PDF.

If we can go to the next slide, please. We went on, then—after the Second Bank closed in 1836, we had a period where we only had state-chartered banks, and then starting in 1863 with the signing of the National Bank Act, you saw nationally chartered banks as well. So we produced a publication on that era.

And then, finally, we have a publication on the history of the Federal Reserve from 1913 until 2013. And, again, all of these are available to be ordered in class sets, but also we have PDFs available, and I’ll show you in a minute how you can find the links to those PDFs.

So if we can go to the next slide. So what I’ve done in the live binder is if you click in the left-hand navigation, you’ll click on “History of Central Banking Publications.” I’ve circled it there in red for you. And then each of those is listed out for you, and so you’ll access, then, the PDF of those. The link is there, so you can directly go back. You could also save the PDF right there in the live binder. You could save that PDF to your hard drive and then upload it to your learning management system. In the center of the screen there circled in orange is a direct link to our order form on our website where you can order the class sets if you want print copies of these publications.

If we can go to the next slide, please. So on this slide I’m just showing you if you had clicked on Benjamin Franklin, what comes up. One thing to make sure is make sure you have Adobe Reader installed on your computer. That’s a big deal, because then you’ll get to see and have access to the ability to save the PDF. But there is the PDF of the Benjamin Franklin publication. I’ve also, at the top, produced some short links that you can copy and paste into your browser, and those will take you directly to the publication on our website. They also will take you to the lesson on our website, and then also if you were to click in the left-hand navigation in the live binder, you can get to the Benjamin Franklin lesson. So, a couple of different ways to get to the same information, again, a resource that I think you could adapt, particularly the discussion questions, the reading guide, from there and put them in your learning management system.

If we could go to the next slide, please. So starting in 2011, we put out the Federal Reserve and You product. This is a web-based resource with 70 video clips across a whole bunch of different topics related to the Federal Reserve, money and banking, the history of central banking. Today, I’m going to talk primarily about the history of central banking aspects of this. We revised this again in 2015. I think the copy actually came out in 2016, but it’s fairly recent, and certainly the history material all is very, very up to date there.

If we could go to the next slide, please. If you want to order a copy, you can do so on our website. There’s the URL to do that. So a DVD, a standard-definition DVD, is possible, but in this environment, that’s not probably the most useful thing right now. If we could go to the next slide. Mainly, what you want to do is to be using the YouTube channel. And so on our YouTube channel, which is www.youtube.com/user/phillyfed—all you have to do is go into YouTube and search for “Philadelphia Fed,” and up will come our YouTube channel. And you can find all 70 clips there. Now, in a minute, I’m going to show you how I’ve linked those in the live binder so you can use them right away. From the live binder, you don’t have to go out to YouTube to search for them. But if you ever forget where they are or you don’t remember the live binder information, you can always go to our YouTube channel, Philadelphia Fed, and look for the Federal Reserve and You clips, and they’re all organized there for you.

Next slide. So in the live binder I’ve created links to each of the videos that are related to the economic history section, and the nice thing is when you’re in the classroom, you could just open the live binder and use them right there. Also, though, you can also see the link, the short link, that’s at the top of each of the pages. After you click in the left-hand navigation, you can see the direct link to that video, so you could take that link and then put it right into your learning management system, as long as it allows YouTube to come straight over. And so there’s videos on the First Bank, the Second Bank, the state and national banking eras. This follows along our similar thing that we have in terms of the print publications. The creation of the Federal Reserve. Then we have a video on the Great Depression, one on World War II through the 1960s, so if you’re teaching the later years of U.S. history, these are great for there, stagflation in the 1970s, boom and bust, and also a video on the financial crisis of 2007 to 2009. So I think particularly the Great Depression and the financial crisis videos might be very useful to you in this particular time in terms of your teaching. And then the last one I linked there was there was additional footage that we had. We put this together into a chapter eight of the Federal Reserve and You, and this is sort of more—it’s not raw footage, but it’s relatively unedited footage from all of the different people that appear in the Federal Reserve video, and this case, it’s Ben Bernanke talking about the Great Depression. So he appears in the Great Depression clip, but then there’s some additional information there in which he talks about the Federal Reserve’s role in the Great Depression and some of the failures of the Fed at that time. So those are there for you.

So let’s go to the next slide. So the other thing that I did is I produced a set of video assignments for you in Google. So these are Google quizzes. They’re produced in Google Form. If you’re already aware of using Google Classroom or using Google Forms as quizzing, they’re useful, I hope, to you. If you click where I’ve circled there—it’s actually circling the wrong place. It should be circling the central banking history video assignments, so I actually circled the wrong spot there. So it would need to be the click that’s right below the one that’s circled there. But in the center of the screen, after you click there, you’ll get a list of all of these links. So these are links to the nine videos for which I’ve created assignments. When you click on one of those links, it will prompt you to copy the assignment that I’ve created into your Google Drive, but if you’re not logged into your Google Drive, it will prompt you to log into your Google Drive and then copy it. If you don’t have a Google Drive, it’s free. It’s a great resource.

Let’s go to the next slide. I just want to show you what it is that the prompt looks like. So assuming you already are logged into your Google Drive, logged into your Google account, you’ll get this screen that’ll come up. All you have to do is click on “Make a copy” and it will copy it into your drive. Once it’s in your Drive, it’s yours. You can then edit it and make use of it. So this is, I think, a great way to make use of some of our questions that we had. So we have multiple-choice questions, I think five to eight multiple-choice questions. And then also on that page, as I’ll show you in a minute, the video appears. So the students could watch the video and then answer those questions, and this is a way for you to be able to assign the videos and make sure that they’ve actually done the work.

So if we could go to the next slide, please. So on this slide what I’ve done is I’ve shown you just a clip of what the top of that page looks like. So if I had copied the assignment over to my Google Drive and I opened it or if I’m assigning it to the students, this is what they’re going to see. They’re going to see a place where they watch the video. It gives them directions on what to do. And, by the way, the top of this is editable once it’s in your account.

If we could go the next slide, I’ll just show you what some of the questions look like. So this is a multiple-choice question related to the First Bank. “During the Revolutionary War, the Continental Congress printed huge amounts of currency, leading to—.” And the correct answer, if we could go to the next slide, is, “Rampant inflation and the currency being practically worthless by the end of the war.” So that’s an example of the types of multiple-choice questions that we have, then, in this.

We’ll do one more. So if we could go to the next slide, please. So this is the last one. So the First Bank has eight questions. “Thomas Jefferson opposed the creation of a national bank because he thought it was not allowed by the Constitution.” So if we could go to the next slide, we’ll show the answer there.

So I hope that these are some useful resources to you. Again, you can use the PDFs that we have of our publications. You can assign those to students in your learning management system. You can make use of some of the materials that are in our print lessons by adapting those over to your learning management system. Obviously, as I said, you won’t be able to do the active learning, but there’s a lot of good content in there. There’s some additional readings in those two lessons, the one on the First Bank and the one for the Benjamin Franklin booklet. And then I hope that these videos from the Federal Reserve and You with these additional Google assignments that I’ve created give you an opportunity to be able to easily assign these to your students. Even if you’re not using Google Classroom, after you copy the assignments over, you could then reset our questions, then, into your learning management system and link out to the YouTube video. So I hope these are some resources that’ll be useful to you at this time to be able to adapt to the new learning online format that we’re all facing at this time.

So I’m going to turn it over to my colleague, Eva, and let her explain some things about FRASER for you.

Eva Johnston: Thank you, Andrew. If we could to the next slide—maybe it’s 22—I’d like to echo my thanks for you being here today and state that making this transition to online learning from face-to-face, it’s challenging for all of us, trying to get the kinks out and get slides to advance. I know right now perhaps my browser is frozen, because I’m stuck on slide 21, and I don’t know if that’s what everybody else is on or not. If not, I do know that—looks like my slides have frozen a little bit. I think we had some polling questions. So if we could have a polling question and also have Jean tell us about the other poll, I’ll get my slides to advance.

Jean Roark: Yeah, that sounds good. Thank you, Eva. So I’m going to go ahead and pose that second polling question first so that people can respond to that, and the question is, “Are you familiar with FRASER, the digital library?” And while you’re looking at that, I am going to share what the polling results were from the beginning of our call. It looks like 55 percent of our participants today, they teach high school, so that is a lot of high school teachers. Welcome. But we also have a fair number of individuals that teach middle school and also some elementary school teachers and a couple of college. Then we have a whole bunch of “other,” too, 16 percent. So we have a wide variety today, so that’s nice. I think I’ve given you lots of time for that polling question, but I’ll still see results coming in, so I’m going to just dance for another second. And, Eva, since I have a second, I want to let you know that we are actually on slide number 26, because we added a couple in, probably from your deck. [laughs] So your slides, if you announce them, you may not want to announce the number, because I don’t want to confuse—

Eva Johnston: The numbers might be incorrect. Okay. Well, that is good to know. I am in the process of logging all the way back in. It looks like I got totally kicked out. So if we’re on slide 26, and if that’s the first one that—

Jean Roark: Before we go back to your slide deck, let’s just show the results of the polling question so that you know what you’re working with here. So you should see results pop up, but, Eva, I’m going to share them with you anyway. We had a whole bunch of responses. Looks like you have quite an audience to teach today. Eighty percent of people said that they are not familiar with FRASER and 20 percent said that they are. So I’m going to go ahead and stop showing those results. And before I turn it over to you, I just want to make sure—can you see the participant view now, Eva?

Eva Johnston: I cannot. I’m like the little pilot that’s flying blind.

Jean Roark: Well, if you just want to let me know when you go to the next slide, I will take care of taking that cue. All right?

Eva Johnston: Okay. That sounds perfect. So, let’s see. How about the slide that says “Teaching and Learning with FRASER.” Do you have that one?

Jean Roark: That’s the one we’ve got up. Yep, we’re good.

Eva Johnston: Okay. So then everyone knows that today these are the main points that I would like to share with you. FRASER, of course, I’m glad that you’re going to know more about it, which I will tell you. Other things that I want to share, though, are—I’m hopeful that perhaps some of you are engaged in project-based learning, and if you are, we do have several options that can be useful for you. We have print lessons that are available and we have lots of digitized resources. So those are the things that we’re planning on do. So, slide 27, next slide, please.

First of all, I want to give you a little bit of background on FRASER. It was originally developed in 2004. There were just very few digital libraries available on the web at that time, and FRASER is an adjunct to another very popular resource. It’s really an economic forerunner in data, and that is FRED, and some of you may be familiar with that. It’s a data aggregator that has over 600,000 series in it. So for the past 15 years, the FRASER team has worked very hard to connect the public with documents and data in FRASER, and much of the data they worked involves actively curating collections so that they’re findable in a digital research environment.

Let’s see. Next slide, please. Something to note here about FRASER is that, unlike lots of other libraries and online collections, like the Library of Congress, for example, you can’t actually visit FRASER. It is online only, for the most part. It is not a physical collection. But in that online space, we do have all kinds of things. We, of course, have lots of Federal Reserve System and Bank publications. We have archival collections, a good series of congressional documents, publications from government agencies, and, of course, we have educational materials.

Next slide, please. Using FRASER for educational purposes, that’s our focus for today. But for those of you that are interested in project-based learning, I invite you to consider the Inside FRASER blog post for inquiry materials. With our Inside FRASER blog, we offer researched, hyperlinked, footnoted blog posts on topics such as women in economic history, African American financial history, Federal Reserve policy, and this timely topic, pandemics. The contents are curated to show you the important stuff and how it fits together. And if you follow social media, I invite you to look to the right so that you can see the Twitter feed. It’s a good source for quick facts and connections to today’s events in economic history.

If we look at the next slide, please, this is of the blog’s uncurrent events. It curates historical primary source and secondary sources relating to the economic impacts of a pandemic. It looks at the 1918 influenza outbreak, and it has maps and dashboards, and there’s an overview of the 1918 influenza pandemic with digitized primary-source documents, has charts. And, importantly, there’s a section that explains the data in context.

If we look at the next slide, please, we know that history is in the making regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, and if you are looking for a systemic timeline of the key events surrounding this pandemic, you can find it here on the front page of FRASER. If we look at the next slide, please, you’ll find that these tiny green diamonds represent official documents and press releases on the day that they were issued.

And as we look at the next slide, please, you can see that the timeline documents began January 4th, 2020, and they’re updated each day by our FRASER team.

If we look at the next slide, please, we know that it was a natural outgrowth of the relationship between the FRASER and Economic Education teams to build this page within FRASER that allows us to present economic education materials that have a FRASER connection. As we look closely here, you’ll find that one of the things that’s nice is that you can find the lessons and full curriculum materials available within the digital library itself. An advantage of accessing them through FRASER are the links to related primary and secondary sources that are found in the FRASER collection. Just click on the “Education” tab at the top and it takes you to—the next slide, please, where you can see the tab that tells us about teaching and learning with FRASER. This allows all audiences to select, or self-select, if they will, their level and area of interest, whether you’re a teacher, professor, librarian, a student, or anyone.

If we look at the next slide, please, you can see, for example, since many of you are high school teachers, you can drill down by subject. And if we look at the next slide, please, history teachers can filter by eras. That way, they can more quickly locate resources for the time period they’re looking for. At the top part, if you look for the “Any Audience,” you can go to that search box and you can type in the topic that you’re looking for and it will help you locate within the collection the appropriate information.

Now, if you look closely at this slide, you might find that this looks a little bit familiar, because this is one of the lessons that Andrew just shared with you. The Philadelphia Fed has graciously given permission to allow the beautifully crafted booklets and the lesson that he’s written to be made available in FRASER. Here you can see an overview of the lesson and you can also see the lesson itself by clicking on the green “View” button.

If you look at the next slide, please, you can see that not only is the lesson available here, but there are links to primary-source documents relating to the First Bank of the United States and Alexander Hamilton that are available by simply clicking on the links.

If we look at the next slide, please, you can see the magnificent booklets that Andrew and his team created are available digitally here. You can share this document with your students on the big screen in your classroom or in your online classroom. And I would encourage if you haven’t done so to take advantage of ordering the classroom sets that Andrew mentioned. They’re beautiful booklets. But if you’d like to share them on the big screen, here’s an option to do that.

As you look at the next slide, some of you, I think, are middle school teachers, and if you are, I invite you to check out our Hamilton’s National Bank lesson to do with your students. This lesson is designed for face-to-face instruction. But let’s go on to another document in FRASER that has an activity that can be easily adapted to online.

So if we look at the next slide, please, you find here this classroom is called “Historical Inquiry with 75 Years of American Finance.” This activity is a great visual to help students see the key events year by year as history unfolded. There is a PowerPoint deck available if you’d like to use it. The activity is a good way to introduce to students concepts and piecing things all together, because it’s all on one page and they can make connections. It allows them to become experts in specific areas and topics within the graphic, and then they share that expertise with their classmates.

Let’s look at the document on the next slide, please. The document is a graphic presentation of events between 1861 and 1935, and it was completed in 1936. The years 1936 and 1938 were added in 1939. The graphic is a detailed timeline allocated one page for each year’s key events. There is an interactive slideshow that you can use with your students. The activity is an excellent way to either introduce a new time period or to recap pulling the events together in the correct context.

If we look at the next slide, please, you can see that this particular booklet is a whole book. It was the brainchild of L. Merle Hostetler. He is the person who compiled the resources. And the penmanship is the handywork of Ruth Rose. Hostetler was a professor of what is now Case Western Reserve University and he was the former research director of the Cleveland Federal Reserve. Note if you look at the bottom of the page here, you can see the sources he used to compile all the information that he put in this booklet.

If we look at the next slide, please, you can see a page from the activity. This is a book that if you love history, you could easily get lost in it, and so what I designed as an activity was a way for students to systemically become experts and get the most out of the document. So what students can do is work in pairs, and each pair takes a number to become experts and learn what it is that they’re seeing in this particular spot and how it fits in and where it’s located on the graphic. The handout could easily be uploaded into an online folder for students to have access to so that they could work together in a Zoom classroom or in your actual classroom.

If we look at number one, assuming your eyesight’s better than mine, number one, if you squint and can look closely, you can see that it says “Political Events,” and that would be laws passed by Congress, constitutional amendments. And as we look at the next slide, I took the key at the beginning and numbered it so that students could easily look here and see that number one, the location on the graphic where it would, and you can see this is where they would know to look for this key information, and then they’d know what they’re looking for and how they find it. So each student gets a copy of the key, which is numbered, and the sheet that we just saw. Now the students will know what they’re seeing and where they’re going to find it on the timeline.

As you look at the next slide, you can see an example of one of the pages. Let’s look at this time at 1918 as the example. So if you were a student in group one, then they can note and look and see across the top what Congress was doing, and they see that Congress was staying in session, and they actually recorded their longest session thus far in U.S. history. And if you look really closely in the upper left corner, you can see the tail end of the word “amendment,” and that’s because in December of 1917, Congress submitted to the states the 18th Amendment, starting the prohibition amendment process. If you look across the top line there to the right, you can see that Congress actually passed in 1918, towards the end of 1918, a Wartime Prohibition Act.

Now, as we look at the next slide, please, you can see that here are some sample inquiry questions that are included in the activity that you could choose to assign to your students. You have lots of choices of which ones you would ones you would want to apply to the teaching that you’re doing at the time.

If we look at the next slide, please, you can see that within FRASER Education, you can quickly see the standards, additional teaching tools, if there’s a PowerPoint available, and related links to digital resources.

And in the next slide, please, you’ll see that we have another series of activities that can easily be given to your students online as historical inquiries using the Statistical Atlas of 1870. The Statistical Atlas of 1870, besides being a mouthful to say, is a beautiful book that we have digitized that you could use virtually in your classroom. The United States, for the first time, visualized the data that was collected in the 1870 Census, and if you’re teaching about the U.S. Census, looking at past census information can be enlightening. We have several historical inquiries available on the FRASER Education page.

And now I would like to turn it over to my colleague, Cariss Turner-Smith, from Cleveland. Take it away, Cariss.

Cariss Turner-Smith: Thank you, Eva. Again, my name is Cariss Turner-Smith. I am with the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.

If you could advance to the next slide, please. And, again, today as my colleagues have stated, I just want to thank all of you all who have joined in on the call. I think as of this morning, there were more than two hundred educators registered, and that is amazing. And like everyone else has said, we really appreciate your flexibility. We, ourselves, as education outreach professionals, are also practicing this flexibility. I’m used to interacting you all at regional and local conferences and professional development workshops, so this also is a switch-up for us, because we really want to hear from you all what resonates with you and what you all are needing for the classrooms. But as we all transition to this different format, we want to make sure that you still have the resources you need and we can still continue to be a partner in your classroom for you.

Next slide, please. Okay. So as I mentioned before, I am with the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland. We are the headquarters of the Fourth District, which serves Ohio, western Pennsylvania, eastern Kentucky, and the West Virginia panhandle. I just wanted to share that information because historically our department—we’re fairly new to expanding our outreach, so if there are any educators in our district and you’d like to connect with us more, please feel free to email us afterwards. Like I mentioned, we are the headquarters of the Fourth District. We have branches located in Cincinnati and Pittsburgh, and today we’re just going to explore a few of the Cleveland Fed’s history and social study resources, which include some historical context and fun facts, as time allows. And speaking of our first fun fact, Cincinnati and Pittsburgh were also in the running to be the headquarters of the Fourth District, but Cleveland won out. Some say it’s because the mayor, Newton Baker’s relationship with Woodrow Wilson. However, research shows that the Cleveland presentation was better researched, presented, and focused on the facts, and also Cleveland showed more promise of future growth. So if you’d like to learn more about Cleveland and the Fourth District, you can feel free to look at our publication, Why Cleveland?.

Next slide. And that leads us to our first publication that we offer through the Cleveland Fed, and that is our resource called Follow the Yellow Brick Road. This short booklet is a monetary policy journey through L. Frank Baum’s book The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, which tells the allegorical tale of the debate on American money, which was first published in 1900. Follow the Yellow Brick Road uncovers the secrets about who and what the character of places and props might represent in the book. And while you might remember something about ruby slippers, don’t be surprised when you find out the shoes in Baum’s story were actually silver. Some of the history and economic topics covered in the booklet include monetary policy, deflation, the Populist party and William Jennings Bryan. And, again, you can download a PDF version of the booklet or order classroom sets to be sent to you at a future date. And, of course, as all of our resources across the system, this booklet is available free of charge and can be downloaded as well.

Next slide, please. So as we’re transitioning, I do want to shout out Eva and Andrew for their very rich concept management systems. Like I said, today, we’re just going to talk about a few different type of resources we have through the Cleveland Fed, and the first one would be the Panic of 1907 video. If you go to our www.clevelandfed.org website and visit our “Learning Center” section, that is where you will find all of the resources that we’re going to discuss today. They’ll all be housed there. So the 1907 video offers a look back at one of the worst financial crises in U.S. history, its causes and lasting influence. Viewers can discover how public concern over the Panic of 1907 led to the creation of the Federal Reserve System. As you know, the Panic of 1907 was the first worldwide financial crisis of the 20th century. It transformed a recession into a contraction surpassed in severity only by the Great Depression. And so the need for a far-reaching national banking system became very apparent. After the Panic of 1907, Congress created a monetary commission which did much research and brainstorming, and on December 23rd, 1913, President Woodrow Wilson signed the Federal Reserve Act, which created the third central bank in the nation’s history, known as the Federal Reserve System. And so this Federal Reserve System was different than the previous central banks in that is had a balance between public and private, regional, and national interest. So, again, this video just gives you a look and another visual aid you can add to the publications that you may be using from the Philadelphia Fed and the FRASER system that Eva mentioned earlier.

Next slide, please. So I am going to now shift our focus to one of our unique resources that we offer through the Cleveland Fed, which are our traveling and online exhibits. Our traveling exhibits are exhibits that were once on display at our Money Museum and Learning Center in Cleveland. They are available for loans to schools and community organizations at no charge. Your organization would just be responsible for shipping and insurance. And just as a point of clarification, these traveling exhibits are available for educators across the country. It’s not just limited to educators in our district. So we’re also in the process of creating a teacher’s guide and lesson in the box will accompany each of these traveling exhibits. And on the next slide, you’ll see the complete listing of the Cleveland Fed’s traveling exhibits, and today we’re just going to take a quick look at some of our most popular exhibits.

Next slide, please. So these are the listings of our traveling exhibits. They include “Hamilton,” “The Freedman’s Bank,” “Propaganda and Patriotism: The Art of Financing America’s Wars,” “Money of the World,” “Currency of the Holocaust,” “Regulation and Change.” And, again, these are available online at our Cleveland Fed website. And one of the things that I love about this is that they can, again, visually enhance the publications offered from across the system.

Next slide, please. So our first exhibit, which was really popular summer of 2018 when I came back to the Fed, because at that time, the Hamilton musical was touring the country—so this is our “Hamilton” exhibit, and this tells the story of the events that led up to the creation of the country’s first, second, and third central banks. And some of the key concepts covered are when the Continental currency failed, the founders of the nation recognized the need to pay off the debts incurred by the Revolutionary War in a fast and orderly manner, and, much like politicians today, how these debts should be settled was a difference of opinion, and as a result, there was disagreement between Hamilton and Jefferson and Madison, and his compelling argument eventually won the approval of President George Washington and the Congress and a central bank was created. And in this exhibit, you can learn more about the “Ten-Dollar Founding Father,” as we call him, through our video Alexander Hamilton and the United States Financial Foundation, which features an interview with Dr. Richard Sylla. And then we’ve also developed a PowerPoint presentation and activities that are suitable for elementary through middle school students.

Next slide, please. So the next exhibit that we’re going to talk about is “The Freedman’s Bank, A Story of Faith, Family, and Finance.” This, by far, has been our most popular traveling exhibit, so for those of you all who may be interested in borrowing it at some point in the future, just so you know, you have to get your bids in early for this. So just to give you a little background, the Freedman’s Savings and Trust Company was a private corporation chartered by an act of the U.S. government signed in 1865 by President Abraham Lincoln. It was created to help develop the newly freed African Americans as they endeavored to become financially stable. Originally, the bank was headquartered in New York, but later moved to Washington, D.C. Eventually, there were 37 locations across 17 states. The Freedman’s Bank exhibit was launched by the Cleveland Fed in 2016 after our research, and this was done largely to celebrate the sesquicentennial of the bank’s charter year of 1865. In the 1860s, there was little opportunity for African Americans to amass enough wealth to bank. Unfortunately, there’s a connection today in that there is still a large population of people of color that are unbanked for various reasons. It was very important for us to showcase the success, albeit temporary, of the Freedman’s Bank and the amount of the wealth freed slaves contributed to the economy. The records left by the Freedman’s Bureau through its work between 1865 and 1872 constitutes the richest and most extensive documentary source available for investigating African American experience in the post-Civil War and Reconstruction eras. Historians have used these materials to explore government and military policies, global conditions and interactions between freed people, local white populations, and bureau officials. On our website, you can view a timeline of events in and surrounding the life of the Freedman’s Bank, and there’s also a link to the national archives, where you can do a search of African American records and the Freedman’s Bureau.

Next slide, please. Our next exhibit is our “Propaganda and Patriotism: The Art of Financing America’s Wars.” I’m sorry, give me one second.

Jean Roark: No worries, Cariss. I’ll just chime in and remind people how they can submit questions. So you can use that “Ask question” button and submit your question for your presenters. Hopefully that was enough time, Cariss.

Cariss Turner-Smith: Yes. Thank you. [laughs] I was texting my husband to come get my child.

Jean Roark: No problem.

Cariss Turner-Smith: Thank you.

So the next exhibit is our “Propaganda and Patriotism” exhibit, and this is actually one that’s become more popular. We’ve done two presentations with the National World War I Centennial Commission in Columbus and in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, so this one has risen to the top in popularity recently, and this one really explores the active role that the Federal Reserve took in marketing war debt to commercial banks and to the public. And it talks about the history of the New York Fed and how it was designated to be the Treasury’s fiscal agent for bond sales during this time, and it talks about how the federal Reserve levered its position as a lender to the banking system to facilitate war bond sales. This exhibit is one of our larger ones. It has about 11 or 12 panels. And there were four liberty loan drives during the war and a fifth victory loan announced after the Armistice, and it just goes to show how popular this was. All of those liberty loan drives were oversubscribed. And this was considered to be the greatest advertising effort ever conducted. The first one used over 11,000 billboards and streetcar ads in 3,200 cities, which were all donated, and by the spring of 1918, the federal government had sold roughly $10 billion, which is about $170 billion in 2019 dollars, in war bonds and treasury certificates. And, finally, it talks about the lasting impact of the war, which resulted in the Federal Reserve’s gold holdings as gold flowed from Europe to pay for munitions, food, and other U.S. exports, and it also enhanced the standing of the U.S. dollar among the world’s currencies. So, again, we do have a few activities that go along with that. If you visit our website, you can explore the interactive timeline and you can also visit the galleries of the World War I and World War II posters that are featured in the exhibit.

Then I know we only have about six minutes left, so I’ll be quick. Our last exhibit that we just want to highlight is “Power to the People: Regulation and Change.” This exhibit explores the public’s role in the regulatory process and the historical origin of regulatory agencies, and it’s an excellent visual resource to provide students, civic groups, and public employees with information about rules, regulations, and laws, and about the impact of those four regulatory agencies, which include the Federal Reserve Board of Governors, from elastic currency to truth in lending, the Interstate Commerce Commission, from railroad price discrimination to desegregation, the Federal Trade Commission, from trust busting to identity theft, and the Federal Communications Commission, from the Titanic to high-speed Internet. So these are some of the topics that you can find in that exhibit.

Next slide, please. So, again, just to kind of bring back Kris’ original point at the beginning of the presentation, you can find all of these resources and more at federalreserveeducation.org. Again, all of the 12 Federal Reserve banks contribute to this, along with the Board of Governors. As you’ve seen today, we have a variety of resources available. We have interactive and virtual, and then we games, lesson plans, and more, and you can order your classroom resources, and you can search by subject, resource type, and grade level. The chart you’re currently seeing is—at the beginning of this kind of stay-at-home order, we wanted to find a way to really make it easy—like, I mentioned the Federal Reserve Education site has a plethora of resources, and we wanted to try to create a curated list that would make your search easier as you were looking for different topics to cover with your students in this virtual classroom setting, and then also we wanted to be mindful to try to connect them to some of the things you might be talking about doing during your current events discussions. So, again, these are all of the resources that we have available. If you click on that link, you can download that chart, and it has clickable links inside of it, and we hope that you find some value in it for the remainder of this schoolyear and maybe leading into the fall semester.

So, again, that is the conclusion. I will turn it back over to Jean.

Jean Roark: All right. Thank you so much, Cariss. I really appreciate it. We did get a couple of questions, and we have a few minutes to cover those.

The first question is, “Can these lessons be adapted for my life skills support class special ed high school students?” And they wanted to say that they really have been enjoying the presentation.

Kris Bertelsen: Jean, this is Kris. I’ll just address that partially from the historical perspective. Maybe my colleagues want to chime in. But I will mention that the Econ Lowdown portal has many online modules based in personal finance and economics content, and those modules have a reset button, where you can assign the modules and allow students to retake them at least one time. And if you want to add the student in again if they have an IEP and you’d like to allow them to take the post-test again, you can enter them again and reset those. All of our videos can be watched and the quizzes taken as many times as the student wants, and those scores are sent over to the teachers. It sounded like Andrew’s materials, of course, can be edited if you get those into your own drive as well. So if anybody has questions on how to use the resources we’ve shared today, of course, you can reach out to us individually too.

Jean Roark: Thanks so much for that, Kris.

All right. We have a couple of questions that I can combine, but it’s basically about where to find the resources and can they get copies. So one is, “Would it be possible to make this PowerPoint available?” You can access it through the webinar, actually, if you go to the “Materials” button. It’s a PDF version, though, so the PowerPoint may be a little trickier. So I’ll let Kris or someone else address that. But someone is also asking, “Can we get copies of this and lesson plans in PDF form?” So, one of you want to cover that too?

Eva Johnston: I just wanted to say that all the lessons that each of our banks have are available for free on either fre.org or you can go to the Philly Fed or you can go to the Cleveland Fed or the St. Louis Fed webpages, and our contact information is available here. If you can’t find something, I’m sure any one of us—I know Cariss, Andrew, and I, we’d be happy to answer your questions. And one thing I would say about some of the history lessons that we have that are connected in FRASER is that in the lesson itself, we try to scaffold things, and if it’s group work, I will say in the lesson that this is, like, an easier portion, so that if you’re working with special ed students, ways that it can be modified are in the procedures in the notes.

Jean Roark: All right. Thanks so much for that, Eva.

We have a couple more questions, and I know that we’re at time. Do you guys mind staying just another minute or two to answer these questions quickly? Is that okay, Kris?

Kris Bertelsen: Yeah.

Jean Roark: All right, cool.

So, Cariss, this one’s for you. Would you be able to give an estimate on shipping and insurance for the exhibit? The person says that they’re in Philadelphia.

Cariss Turner-Smith: I can get that for you. If they want to email me, I can get that information to them.

Jean Roark: All right, cool. And your contact information is in the PDF version of the PowerPoint, so you can go to the “Materials” button and grab that.

And then we had another person ask a couple of questions. What is FRASER, the acronym, for? Does the Cleveland outreach program extend to Altoona, Pennsylvania? This is all one question. Is the Freedman Bank exhibit appropriate for elementary grade three to five? So I don’t know if one of you want to take a stab or if we need to do a couple of you.

Cariss Turner-Smith: I can say yes, Freedman’s Bank is appropriate. We can definitely help identify some activities that would make it more age-appropriate, depending on what you’re trying to do with the exhibit. And can you repeat the other question that—oh, Altoona, yes. Yes, my outreach covers western Pennsylvania.

Jean Roark: Perfect. And then what is the FRASER acronym?

Eva Johnston: That’s an excellent question. It has actually evolved, and at one point in time, each letter did stand for something in particular, but now it is just—that’s what they started out with, and they just use it as FRASER and the old acronym is not accurate anymore. So just think of it as a digitized historical library. It used to be “FR” for Federal Reserve, and it had “Archival” in it and that’s where the “A” came from, and then it was supposed to be “System” for the “S”, and I’m not sure about the other letters. So sorry I don’t have an exact answer for you.

Cariss Turner-Smith: Just to circle back to the person who asked about the exhibit, it would be about $25 for the cost for shipping to Philadelphia area, and if there are some school districts that need help, we can assist with that if necessary. It ranges between $25 to $50.

Jean Roark: Perfect. Thank you so much for that, Cariss. I appreciate it.

And the very last question: is “Power to People: Regulation and Change” available outside of the museum setting?

Cariss Turner-Smith: Yes, you can borrow the exhibit. Yes, the entire exhibit is available. So they’re panels. They’re pop-up panels that we will ship to you.

Jean Roark: All right. Thanks so much. All right, those were all the questions.

Kris, I’m going to give you a chance, if you have some closing remarks, and then I’ll officially close us out with a quick survey, but I’m going to let you go first.

Kris Bertelsen: Okay, sounds good, and I’ll try to be quick here. First of all, thank you for joining us today. One of the questions was if the PowerPoint is available. I’d just like to point out that this and all of our webinars are posted on www.stlouisfed.org/education, and if you search “webinars,” you’ll find the ECONnections series up there from previous webinars. This one is no exception. We will have it up there and you’ll be able to access that.

Thank you again for your work. Please follow our respective banks on social media, and if you would pass the information along to colleagues who you think could benefit from our webinars and our resources, we’d really appreciate that.

Two save-the-dates: September 23rd, 2020, and 11/12/2020. We will have webinars again on each of those dates at the same time. We have not decided content yet, because, as you know, things have changed. And so we do have the dates set, September 23rd and November 12th. If you do have questions for us, again, please reach out to us individually, and we’re happy to help you. And that includes not spinning your wheels on our websites. If you can’t find something, please do not hesitate to reach out to us.

Jean Roark: All right. Thanks so much, Kris. I appreciate that. And I will echo your appreciation, but not just for our participants, but also for you and your colleagues for taking the time to share your time and expertise.

So I pushed out a survey. Hopefully, you received that link. It should have popped up on your screen, but I’ll also be sending an email here pretty shortly. It’s the same link. But we would love to hear your feedback on how we can improve our sessions, so please do take just a couple of minutes to do that.

All right, and after all of that, this concludes today’s Federal Reserve ECONnections Webinar. Enjoy the rest of your day.


If you have difficulty accessing this content due to a disability, please contact us at 314-444-4662 or economiceducation@stls.frb.org.

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Education Level: 6-8 9-12
Subjects: Civics/Government Economics History
Concepts: Business Cycle Federal Reserve System-functions Federal Reserve System-structure Great Depression
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