Part of a Chinese picture scroll depicting a boat on a river and a bridge

The Song Dynasty in China

What makes this module particularly interesting is its usage of a 12th century picture scroll as a means to explore various facets of Chinese life during this period.
Image of the website header reading "The Story of Africa: African History from the Dawn of Time"

The Story of Africa

Each segment provides a selection of quotes from primary sources that illuminate specific issues. There are many gems to mine. They range from original lyrical quotations that capture the arresting images of initiation rituals and political power.

The Turin Beatus Map of the World


Before the modern age, maps offered more than just an objective, geographical survey. Often, as is the case with this world map from the 12th century, they also conveyed a set of stories that shaped the worldview of its viewers. This map, for instance, sought to convey allegorical, religious, and geographic information all at once. It located Adam and Eve, the world's first humans according to... Read More »

A view of the Eiffel Tower

The Web Museum, Paris

Perhaps the greatest strength of the Web Museum site as a teaching tool is the interlinking of text within the site. Many of the essays and artist biographies contain one or more links to other, related artists, or to terminology.
Page from Three-Character Classic

Three-Character Classic


The famous Three-Character Classic, a children's primer attributed to Wang Yin-lin (1223-1296) whose text consists of rhymed verse developed to help children increase their vocabulary in Chinese characters, provides a valuable introduction to the social values that children were encouraged to embrace as well as a detailed look at the language – rhetorical, idiomatic, and visual – that conveyed... Read More »

Image of a Buddha statue in the lecture hall of Sitague Buddist Academy

Tibetan and Himalayan Digital Library

Users willing to delve deeply into the various sections are rewarded with a vast amount of primary materials in the form of texts, videos, images, and maps.
The portrait of Selim III 1789-1807, showing Selim dressed in red robes sitting against some pillows

Topkapi Museum

Such images of Islamic art from the Topkapi museum can not only bring to life periods of Ottoman history, but also the variety and brilliance of Islamic art, both of which are useful to the teaching of world history.
Image of a monk praying before Buddha

Urban Dharma, Buddhism in America

Although many of the essays are intended to promote Buddhism and a Buddhist religious perspective, the site also includes English translations of important early South Asian documents.
Detail of an engraving showing Saint Peter's cathedral ca. 1587

Vatican Library

But the best use of this site might be to accept it as an exhibit and encourage students to wander through it themselves, stopping where they choose, so that they discover the beauty and variety of the collection.
Detail of a page from Andreas Vealius' book Bruxellensis showing a map of major arteries

Vaulted Treasures: Historical Medical Books at the Claude Moore Health Sciences Library

This website features roughly 200 digitized pages drawn from more than 50 medical books published between 1493 and 1819. The website is structured as a virtual exhibit, presenting a separate page for each of 45 authors, including a brief biography of each.