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Thinking Thursdays
  • Every Thursday at 1:00 PM CT, IKEducators provide live, online programs targeting different grade ranges.

  • After browsing the options below, CLICK HERE to register for a Thinking Thursday program.

  • Please register at least 48 hours ahead of time to ensure that you will receive the necessary information to join this Zoom presentation. Participants' faces and full names will NOT be shown. Questions can be submitted live through the Zoom chat feature. 

  • If you miss that deadline or are unable to utilize Zoom, you can still view the program live on Facebook and a recorded version will be available on YouTube within a few days.

THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 17, 2020  9am, 10am, 1pm, and 2pm.  

PROGRAM: Constitution Day     4th-5th Grades

(We're breaking the rules right out of the door! On this special day in history, we are offering four programs throughout the day instead of just one! Your students can register for just one or all Constitution Day programs.)

9:00-9:40 am CT:   We will start the day with an "Introduction to the Three Branches of Government and the Roles of the President."

10:00-10:40 am CT:  "Becoming President." During this time, students will learn about the requirements to become the president and figure out what year they will be eligible!

1:00-1:40 pm CT: Students will examine primary source letters that kids just like them wrote to President Eisenhower in "Dear Mr. President"and then practice their American right to write today's elected officials.

2:00-2:40 pm: IKEducation will read the children's book Sophia Valdez, Future Prez by Andrea Beaty to springboard students into considering what issues they might want to tackle in "If I Were President."

Constitution Day image


PROGRAM*: Little Ike Artifacts     K-5th Grades

(You may also have seen this program listed as "Growing Up Eisenhower.")

Step back in time and learn about “Little Ike,” as Dwight D. Eisenhower was known during his boyhood. This program will use artifacts that paint a picture of Little Ike's rural Kansas life from 1890 - 1910.

Little Ike Artifacts image


PROGRAM: I Like Ike: An Election Icon  5th-8th Grades

It’s election time in America! You may know that ”I Like Ike” was the most successful campaign slogan in history, but did you know that it went beyond the iconic pin? Students will learn about the Disney commercial, the song, and even 1952 election fashions that helped propel Ike to the presidency.

Election Icon image

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 8, 2020  1:00 CT

PROGRAM*: Red Scare: Spies Among Us?     7th - 12th Grades

Julius and Ethel Rosenberg were members of the Communist Party living in the U.S. when they were convicted of passing secrets to the Soviet Union in 1945 and sentenced to death. Controversy surrounded the case, as many claimed the decision was the result of Cold War hysteria rather than facts. In this program, students examine primary documents from people both inside and outside of the Intelligence Community, and then examine President Eisenhower's decision of whether or not to grant executive clemency to the Rosenbergs.

Red Scare

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 15, 2020 1:00 CT

PROGRAM*: Use it Up, Wear it Out, Make it Do, or Do Without! Sacrifices on the Home Front     6th-8th Grades

Every aspect of American life was focused towards winning during World War II, and everyone tried to do their part to support the Allied troops. Students will explore primary sources like ration books and propaganda posters to learn how Americans on the home front helped our troops win the war.

Use it Up

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 22, 2020 1:00 CT

PROGRAM: Story Time: Sophia Valdez, Future Prez          K-2nd Grades

Using the newest children’s book written by Andrea Beaty and illustrated by David Roberts, IKEducation invites you to get an afternoon snack and join us for story time. "Sofia Valdez, Future Prez" is a great book to begin a discussion of civic duty and what it takes to bring a community together to do something good, no mater how old you are. Beaty encourages her readers to stand up for what they believe in, and teaches them to not give up at the first sign of failure.

Sophia Valdez book

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 29, 2020 1:00 CT

PROGRAM*: Attic Artifacts: World War II     4th-8th Grades



Following World War II, many Americans kept souvenirs of lost loved ones or their time in the war. Many of these articles were stored in boxes or trunks and then tucked away in attics, basements, and garages for decades. In this program, students examine a variety of artifacts from the World War II in order to learn how important they are as sources of information.

WWII kids


PROGRAM: Women of Kansas: Beyond Dorothy     6th - 8th Grades

From the time Kansas became a state in 1861, it has been home to women who pushed the boundaries. From well-known Kansans like Amelia Earhart and Carrie Nation to lesser-known women who fought for equality in politics, sports and the workforce, they have overcome obstacles to explore uncharted areas of the world not easily accessible to women. Dorothy was right in saying “There’s no place like home,” but the women presented in this program stepped way off the yellow brick road and blazed their own paths.

Women of KS


PROGRAM: Rosie the Riveter          3rd - 5th Grades

When America's men left to fight with the Allies in World War II, women were recruited through posters and other propaganda to work at non-traditional jobs in defense plants and factories. Many women had always held jobs outside the home, but this was the first time they were being paid well and taught skilled labor. Many other women had not held a paying job outside of their home and this was a new experience to earn money for their hard work. These "Rosie the Riveters" proved their abilities to America and themselves and have not looked back since.



PROGRAM: Spy Kids:  Code Talkers        6th - 8th Grades

Crucial sources of enemy information were obtained by surveillance, code breaking, and subterfuge throughout World War II. Intelligence agencies helped the Allies win the war by slipping behind enemy lines to serve as spies, or working to break Axis message codes and steal critical information. In this program, students explore the Code Talkers, Native American men who served in the U.S. military and used their native languages to create codes that were never broken, even after the end of the war.

Code Talkers


PROGRAM:  In Plain Sight: D-Day Deception     9th - 12th Grades


The best deception is attained by feeding an opponent with falsehoods which he wants to believe. Using code names such as Fortitude, Bodyguard, Quicksilver, and Double-Cross, General Eisenhower commanded a series of covert operations that played a crucial role in the victorious Allied invasion of Europe. Students examine primary sources to gain an understanding of D-Day deception plans.

D-Day Deception


PROGRAM:  V-Mail          4th - 8th Grades



In the days before texts, tweets, skypes, snaps, or even email, written letters served as a vital link between friends and loved ones. The morale provided by letters from home to American soldiers who were fighting in foreign countries was irreplaceable. During World War II, U.S. post offices were flooded with mail and its bulk was competing with the space needed  in transport vehicles for necessary military supplies. This created a huge problem of morale versus supplies; both critical to U.S. soldiers. In this program, students will learn how American ingenuity solved this problem through the invention of Victory Mail.


* Programs marked with an asterisk are also part of a series hosted by a partnership of the the National Archives, Presidential Library System, and the Presidential Primary Sources Project. When you register through IKEducation, your information will also be registered with them. Please expect the necessary entry codes to be emailed to you from them on the morning of the program. If you would like to learn about about other programs in this series, visit the National Archives Education Updates.


REGISTER HERE for a Thinking Thursday program. 

  • Please register at least 48 hours ahead of time to ensure that you will receive the necessary information to join this Zoom meeting. Participants' faces and full names will NOT be shown. Questions can be submitted live through the Zoom chat feature. 

  • If you miss that deadline or are unable to utilize Zoom, you can still view the program live on Facebook and a recorded version will be available on YouTube within a few days.