Virtual Pajama Party
We hosted a Virtual Pajama Party on Saturday, March 20, 2021. This online event for kids aged 8–12 focused on women's history in sports and the Olympics – and featured Olympic gold medalist and author Laurie Hernandez!
Watch a recording of the pajama party and learn more about the program in the details below.
- We learned about women's history in sports, the Olympics, and gymnastics.
- Participants read the book I Got This: To Gold and Beyond in advance. The book, by gymnast Laurie Hernandez, is a memoir of her life in gymnastics, training for the Olympics, and post-Olympic experiences. It emphasizes the importance of trying new things, setting goals, hard work, and persistence.
- Ms. Hernandez participated live, reading a section of her book and answering questions.
- Hands-on activities were provided in advance of the pajama party.
- The Archivist of the United States shared a pajama party snack recipe.
A series of optional at-home activities were provided for families. These make connections to topics like women's history in sports, the Olympics, and gymnastics. They include a variety of writing activities, art, historical documents, and visual sources so that you could choose which activities work best for your child(ren). While the suggested age range for the pajama party was 8-12, younger siblings were invited to participate and activities supported multi-age learning. Children were invited to create and share their art and writing activities in advance of the program.
Activity 1: Women and Girls in Sports
Watch the video to learn about the activities, and use the following links to view the historical photographs and film mentioned in the video:
Activity 2: Women and the Olympics
Watch the video to learn about the activities, and use these links to view the historical photographs and letter shared in the video:
Activity 3: Gymnastics
Watch the video to learn about the activities, and use these links to view the historical photographs, film, and patent in the video:
A Pajama Party Snack
Watch Archivist of the United States (AOTUS) Davis S. Ferriero share a recipe for delicious vegetarian pancakes!
We hosted our first Virtual Pajama Party on Saturday, October 17, 2020. During this online event for kids aged 8–12, we learned about Jackie Robinson, including his barrier-breaking career in baseball, but also his lifelong commitment to civil rights work through civic engagement and advocacy.
Participants read the historical fiction book The Hero Two Doors Down in advance. The book was written by children’s author Sharon Robinson, about a real episode in her father Jackie Robinson’s life. Ms. Robinson read a section of her book and answered audience questions.
Hands-on activities were provided in advance, as well as during the pajama party:
Activity 1: Welcoming Strangers
Select art or writing activities surrounding ideas of welcoming others and feeling welcome or unwelcome. Watch the video on YouTube to learn about the activities, and use the following links to view the historical photographs shared in the video:
- Children at Ellis Island, ca. 1908
- Jackie Robinson with President Eisenhower at the White House, 1957
Activity 2: Heroes
Choose art or writing activities about heroes. Watch the video on YouTube, and access the historical photographs and comic book referenced in the video here:
- Jackie Robinson in his Brooklyn Dodgers Uniform, 1950
- "Children Gather to Welcome Home Their Daddies of the 369th Regiment" at the end of World War I
- Staff Sergeant Ermalinda Salazar at the St. Vincent de Paul Orphanage in Vietnam, 1970
- Batman, No. 90, Comic
Activity 3: Making Mistakes and Making Changes
Select art or writing activities about making mistakes and learning how to make better choices. Watch the video on YouTube. Use the following links to view the historical photographs and letter shared in the video:
- 1st Grade Class Buying War Bonds and Stamps, 1944
- Booker T. Washington Agricultural School on Wheels, 1923
- Letter from Jackie Robinson to President Eisenhower, 1958
Activity 4: Standing Up Against Discrimination
Activity 4 was shared during our live program with Ms. Sharon Robinson on October 17th, and featured the following National Archives documents: