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America the Beautiful

Page history last edited by C. Neal 6 years, 4 months ago

America the Beautiful Logo



 Using America the Beautiful

 Level 2 No Data Is Shared Icon

Level 2 Tool

No data is shared:

Access to this tool does not require any user to share information about themselves




This information last checked: 10/21/2016


America the Beautiful is now Scholastic Go!



Snapshot Icon 



Table of Contents:

Visit the America the Beautiful Database
We recommend that you open the database in a new tab, and refer to it as you review this Snapshot.  
The database remote access username & password are needed for access outside the BCPS network.



America the Beautiful Online is a database featuring comprehensive historical, geographical, and demographic information on all U.S. states and territories. Composed of highly visual, fact-filled, interest-driven material presented in a user-friendly interface, the database includes over 1,400 colorful, easy-to-read, highly interactive articles and over 2,300 useful Web links with summaries. It also features timelines, biographical profiles of famous Americans, games, an almanac, maps, photographs, and multimedia content.

Target Audience: Elementary and Middle School students; content may also be suitable for High School students.

Content Connections: Social Studies, English Language Arts, Science (natural resources, environmental topics)


Standards Alignment

  • Aligned with CCSS and other national/state content standards. 
  • Use Advanced Search to search by CCSS or other national/state content standards.
  • Click Standards Alignment at the top of any page to view the standards to which that content is aligned.


Content & Features

  • State Modules:  State modules include these sections, listed on the left sidebar of each page: Introduction, Fast Facts, History, Geography, Economy, Culture, Government, Cities, Spotlights, Profiles, State Timelines, Word Find, and What Do You Know.
    The opening page for each state also includes:
    • Geopolitical map of the state: Click on the map to enlarge it, and then click on major cities and features on that map to bring up specific text about that city or feature.
    • Photograph or illustration: Click to enlarge it and read a fuller caption.
    • Maps & Media button: Clicking on this button brings up a list of all the maps, illustrations, and multimedia features pertaining to the state. Multimedia features include audio slide shows and panoramic photos.
    • Web Links button: at the top of the right-hand column. Click this button (at the top of the right-hand column) to find a carefully selected list of external Web sites that provide additional information about the states 
  • Illustrations and Photographs: Database text is enriched with nearly 3,000 illustrations and photographs, both historical and current. Illustrations appear beside relevant text, and can be clicked to enlarge the image and read an extensive caption.
  • Maps: There are more than 400 maps in the database. For each state, there are eight maps: Cities & Routes, Exploration, Geopolitical, HIstorical, Natural Resources, Parks & Forests, Population Density, and Topography. Clicking selected names on the maps will display informative text about those places. 
  • Multimedia: Slide programs with audio, each about 60 seconds long, offer information about state topics such as specific geographic features, historic sites, and important personalities. 
  • Panorama Photographs: Panorama photos covering either 180° or 360° of a specific scene give users a unique view of an event or place at a particular time in history or today. Move your cursor across the picture to make it rotate. Panoramas are excellent starting points for class discussions, as students observe details and then discuss what they saw. Students can identify clues as to time period, location, or event that are provided by the panorama. 
  • Internal and External Links: Clicking on a highlighted link within the text will bring the student to additional database material about that topic. In addition, a special Links button at the top of the screen will take students to a group of carefully selected external Web sites to expand the learning experience. These Web sites have been chosen for their value and age-appropriate content, and are continually reviewed by America the Beautiful editors.
  • Further Reading: Refers students to selected print books about each state to extend their learning. Each book entry contains an informative annotation as well as standard bibliographical information.



  • Clickable Map:  Click any state on the U.S. Map featured on the database Home Page to open a State Profile; buttons for Puerto Rico and U.S. Territories appear just below the U.S. Map.
  • List of States:  At the top of the screen, allows you to move quickly to a different state.
  • Tabs:  At the top of the Home Page are five tabs for accessing special features:  U.S. Topics, Timelines, Profiles, Games, and Almanac.
  • Keyword Search:  Use the Find It Fast field and Search button do do a keyword searchof the entire ATB databases. The ATB search engine contains a "stemming" function that will automatically look for plurals and other variant forms of the search term.
  • Advanced Search:  Click on Advanced Search button at the top of the screen in order to:
    • Filter content by Lexile range. 
    • Use advanced searching techniques including Boolean logic operators (AND, OR, NOT) and wildcards.
    • Click on Search Curriculum Standards to search by CCSS or other national/state content standards.
    • Click on Search Tips in the Advanced Search window for help.
  • Search Results:  Once a search is complete, a numbered list of articles is displayed on the Search Results screen. Article titles are displayed in order of relevance and are provided as hyperlinks—that is, you can click on the title and go right to the article. 


Learning Supports & Tools

  • Read Aloud:  From any page, click Turn Read Aloud On at the top of the frame.
    • Click on any sentence to begin Read Aloud. Each sentence is highlighted in yellow, and individual words are highlighted in blue as they are read aloud. Click Turn Read Aloud Off at the top of the frame at any time. 
  • Dictionary:  Click on the Dictionary button at the top of the page to look up the definition of any unfamiliar word from an article text in the American Heritage Children's Dictionary.
  • Lexiles:  Click the Lexile link at the top of the frame to see an article's Lexile score
    • In the Lexile window, click on About Lexiles to see the Lexile Range key.
    • Click  Search Articles by Lexile Level to open the Advanced Search window and search for articles within a specific Lexile range. 
    • For more information about Lexile, visit the Lexile Resource Page on this wiki. 
  • Citations:  Click the How to Cite This Article link at the top of the article; pre-formatted citations in MLA, Chicago, and APA styles appear at the bottom of each article. Citations can simply be copied and pasted onto a user's Works Cited list.
  • Print Options:  Click Print Article at the top of the page frame for a printer-friendly version of the article
  • Sharing Options:  Click Email Article at the top of the page frame to email the article to oneself, a classmate or colleague. 
  • Bookmarking:  Click Bookmark This Page at the top of the page frame to bookmark the page in the Internet browser you're using. 
  • Help:  From any page, click on the Help link at the bottom of the page for an explanation of ATB database features and content. 


Tutorials & Guides


Educator Resources

  • Slideshow Overview (editable)

  • Printables: Printable state maps and graphic organizers.

  • Click Teacher Resources at the bottom of any page to access these teacher resources: 

    • Introduction to America the Beautiful Online

    • Using America the Beautiful Online in Your Classroom

    • Projects and Activities for All States

    • Projects and Activities for Specific States

  • Direct Linking:  To obtain a direct link, click on Bookmark this page on the right side of the yellow menu bar at the top of the window. When the small pop-up window opens, right-click on the hyperlink displayed under Bookmark this link and select Copy Shortcut (in Internet Explorer) or Copy Link Address (in Chrome). 



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