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What Do da Vinci and World-Record Skydiver Alan Eustace have in Common?—STEM in 30
In 2014, Alan Eustace set the world record for the highest altitude jump at 135,899 feet. Learn about his journey and find out about the daredevils who preceded Eustace in this National Air and Space Museum video.
What It Took to Set the World Record for Surfing
Brazilian surfer Rodrigo Koxa had to conquer PTSD before he was ready to break Garrett McNamara’s world record. Read this Smithsonian magazine article to learn all about it.
How to Fold a World Record-Setting Paper Airplane
The secret lies in the design, but having a football quarterback on hand to throw the plane might help you break records. Read this Smithsonian magazine article to learn more.
Amelia Earhart: Setting Records
From a very young age, Amelia Earhart knew she wanted to do something different. Visit this National Air and Space Museum site to learn how she became enamored with aviation, and from the very beginning set flight records.
Make It Out Alive: The Most Powerful Tornado Recorded on Earth
For Oklahoma City and its surrounding suburbs, May 3, 1999 began like any other spring day. By the evening, a deadly tornado of unprecedented ferocity had wreaked havoc, claiming a total of 36 lives. Watch this Smithsonian Channel video to learn all about it.
Telegraphs and Telephones—How They Work
The telegraph and telephone transformed American society and its economy. Watch this video from the National Museum of American History to learn how these important devices work.
The Cell Phone’s True Magic
Of all the devices that surround us, the cell phone may qualify as the most magical. Read this article from the Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation to meet Martin “Marty” Cooper, the man who invented this game-changing technology.
Telephones through Time
Explore the history of telephones, beginning with Alexander Graham Bell’s experimental telephone, in this Smithsonian spotlight collection.
Spy Letters of the American Revolution
This website, produced by students from the University of Michigan, focusses on the communications of American and English spies during the Revolutionary War. The site, presented by the Smithsonian’s History Explorer, includes a gallery of eleven different spy letters, stories about spies during the Revolution, a timeline showing important dates relating to spying during the war and a collection of ideas for using the site in the classroom.
Communication Breakdown (Part 1 of 2)
This lesson for high school students from the Cooper-Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, focuses on the evolution of the telephone through the lens of user-centered design. Students will analyze the development of the phone by looking at select examples from the museum’s collection and then compare those artifacts to contemporary telephone designs.