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Smithsonian Magazine Reviews
One of my absolute favorite periodicals, there is not an edition that I do not pick up without learning something new. With a diversity of articles, Smithsonian covers history, science, culture, the arts in a single issue. It is one of those magazines where EVERY article is worth reading.
Mission: “The increase and diffusion of knowledge”Vision: “Shaping the future by preserving our heritage, discovering new knowledge, and sharing our resources with the world.” Summary: Smithsonian magazine looks both ahead at current scientific advances and back through history. While the magazine’s historical focus tends to be on America, the magazine does not limit itself to just one continent. The January, 2015 edition’s cover article was an update on the hunt for Amelia Earhart. Topics of other featured articles include a Lakota pictographic calendar, evidence of post-traumatic stress disorder in Civil War soldiers, and a look at the Australian Blue Mountains with the great-great-grandson of Charles Darwin as a guide.The cover of the February, 2015 edition features an article on the Amur tiger, which is native to Russia. Interestingly, the article showcased on the table of contents was about the excavation of an ancient shipwreck off of Greece. This article includes an inset on the ancient navigational tool that had made the rounds on the internet awhile back being touted as an ancient alien computer. There is a twelve page article on the battle of Gallipoli. Several pages were devoted to the Marquis de Sade, who was contrasted with Fifty Shades of Grey.Strengths/Weaknesses: The content is varied, but the coverage deep enough to reveal insights into even more commonly known topics. The photographs are descriptive, relevant, and often gorgeous. The broad scope of this magazine should make it appealing to a relatively broad audience. Some of the articles expect the reader to approach them with some prior knowledge, which could be difficult for some readers. Also, the reading level can be a bit higher level, which when combined with unfamiliar content could make comprehension more challenging.Illustrations: The photography is stunning and plentiful. While the bulk of the illustrations are photographic, other types of illustrations are included, such as maps and diagrams.Target Audience: High school aged students and aboveCurriculum Ties: Curricular connections will differ each month. For example, the January edition contained an article on string theory that could perhaps be relevant to a high school science class. The same edition, as mentioned earlier, had an article on PTSD in Civil War soldiers, which could be used to enrich an eighth grade history class. Teachers would need to consider the reading ability of their students before using articles for independent reading.Personal Critique: I, admittedly, am not much of a magazine reader. Yet, I enjoy this magazine. Each month is a surprise, and I always feel a little more knowledgeable from reading it. The connection to the collections of the Smithsonian museums allows for unique insights into events in our nation’s history.
I've been reading Smithsonian Magazine for 24 years. I just finished reading the September 2016 issue, called "Black in America," from cover to cover. Definitely my favorite issue ever. Rather than being recycled, this one will become part of my personal library.
The most interesting magazine I read each month. Covers everything form the Arts, Science, Nature, just everything. If you have never read an issue, I urge you to try one. You will be hooked if you have a curious mind.
currently catching up on my subscription!
Another magazine that I could not resist this summer!
LOVE this mag. I get so excited when it comes in the mail!