In early 2019, I walked into an exhibit at the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles that exponentially expanded my love and respect for Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. I had long admired her soft but fierce demeanor on the Supreme Court bench and was excited to learn more about the life of this extraordinary woman and pop culture icon. I left that museum more awestruck than I could have ever imagined.
Whether the school year is in person, fully remote, or a hybrid of the two, teachers, administration, and school support staff are collectively navigating uncharted territory. As we enter a brand-new normal, educators are bound to face new challenges in the classroom.
Teaching all sides of history and utilizing resources that aim to showcase diverse peoples is essential in the modern social studies classroom. Recognizing the unique struggles of people of color throughout history and empathizing with them takes precedence in learning, now more than ever.
Students in the K-12 setting experience immense developmental changes, socially, emotionally, and academically. All the while, they go through dreaded awkward stages—braces, bad haircuts, first crushes—and experience greater demands from parents, teachers, and community members.
Funding for public education can be a tricky topic to comprehend fully. As the process is complex, federal funding can bring up a myriad of questions, and new educators may not know how to make sense of it all.
Across the country and the world, people are rallying behind the Black Lives Matter movement to enact change in a system that has historically been unjust to people of color. Our company recognizes the struggles African Americans have faced throughout history and think now is the time to elevate the voices of the unheard.
Contemporary literature gives readers a look at progressive writing styles that often reflect the world in which the works were written. Although often reserved for English or writing courses, recent novels can also be used in secondary social studies classrooms to teach about current events, political themes, economics, sociology, or even history.
To quote one of my previous graduate school professors, "education is simply made up of alphabet soup."
An impactful memoir has long-lasting effects on its reader. For high school students, a real story about the struggles of humanity and strength of the human spirit helps them connect with history and see the world from a different perspective.
Classic literature is often reserved for English or Writing courses, but in secondary social studies classrooms, historical novels written about specific eras and themes can have as much merit as a traditional textbook. Teachers can use the following examples as a guide to teach their students social studies themes, including politics, government, sociology, and various historical eras.