New York State and Local History and Government


New York State and Local History and Government is a collection of resources designed to complement the New York State Social Studies Framework for 4th Grade.  These media-rich resources and accompanying support materials cover disciplinary core topics from the geography of New York State to immigration and migration.  Each topic contains video-based resources you can use to bring history to life for your students.  Click on “Explore Collection” to see a list of featured resources. 

Looking for more New York State history resources?  Visit WSKG's Uniquely New York, a collection of teaching and learning tools highlighting local parks, museums, landmarks and people. 

  • Upstate, Downstate: The Women's Movement

    Upstate, Downstate is an original web series that teaches students about the history, geography and government of New York State. Aligned to the New York State Social Studies Framework for Grade 4, this episode explores the history of the women’s movement of the 1800s, it’s connection to abolitionism, and how struggles for women’s rights continue to this day. Don't forget to check out the Support Materials tab underneath the video for discussion questions, student handouts, and more!

    For more resources like this, visit the New York State & Local History & Government collection. 

    Grades: 3-5
  • Upstate, Downstate: Immigration

    Upstate, Downstate is an original web series that teaches students about the history, geography and government of New York State. Aligned to the New York State Social Studies Framework for Grade 4, this episode explores immigration past and present, and the contributions immigrants have made to their communities. 

    For more resources like this, visit the New York State & Local History & Government collection. 

    Grades: 3-5
  • Tour Through New York State

    This video is a cool and hip way to tour across New York State. The teacher takes students on a virtual tour of NYS while using music and movement. The tour includes important landmarks and sightseeing hot spots throughout NYS while incorporating history and physical activity! At each sight the students perform an exercise that could be done while at the location or to get to the location. This is an excellent lesson for cognitive and psychomotor skills.This video is a cool and hip way to tour across New York State. The teacher takes students on a virtual tour of NYS while using music and movement. The tour includes important landmarks and sightseeing hot spots throughout NYS while incorporating history and physical activity! At each sight the students perform an exercise that could be done while at the location or to get to the location. This is an excellent lesson for cognitive and psychomotor skills.

    This video is available in both English and Spanish audio, along with corresponding closed captions.

    Grades: 2-5
  • Mannahatta 1609

    This video from Dutch New York explores the diverse ecosystem that Henry Hudson encountered when he arrived at “Mannahatta,” the name given by the native Lenape people to the island now known as Manhattan. Dr. Eric Sanderson, Director of the Mannahatta Project, explains that Manahatta's ecosystem was more diverse than Yosemite or Yellowstone National Parks and describes the landscape, flora and fauna of the island in Henry Hudson's day.

    Grades: 3-12
  • Henry Hudson | PBS World Explorers

    English explorer Henry Hudson was born at the height of the age of exploration in Europe, as navigators hunted for new routes to Asia. Hudson's multiple voyages in to the arctic in search of a Northwest passage eventually set the stage for British colonial dominance in North America. 

    Grades: 4-8
  • Sojourner Truth | Abolitionist and Women’s Rights Activist Video

    An abolitionist and feminist during the nineteenth century, Sojourner Truth demanded not less discrimination, but no discrimination. Truth escaped enslavement and, despite being unable to read or write, rose to be a leader in the fight for equality and fair treatment for both women and African Americans. Through two primary source activities and a short biographical video, students will understand the remarkable career of this persevering woman who lived up to her self-chosen name.

    View the Lesson Plan

    Grades: 3-7

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