All posts by cassiemedley

About cassiemedley

Instructional Coach at Seaman Middle School

I Can’t Count That High: PBL in the Social Studies Classroom

statistics-of-population-research-paperOne of the new initiatives in my school district during the 18-19 school year has been to begin a Project Based Learning community.  This is a group of teachers who came in over the summer for two full days of training, and have continued to meet quarterly during the school year to learn about PBL together and support each other as they implement PBL in their own classrooms.

My mentor teacher, Kim Zielsdorf, teaches 7th Grade World Geography and Kansas History, and she jumped right into PBL from the beginning of the school year with a highly engaging, yet short and sweet project to introduce the students to the World Geography curriculum.  Kim presented this question to the students: How big is 7.7 billion? The students then worked with partners to find creative ways to represent the global population.  How long it would take Crayola to make 7.7 billion crayons, how far you would travel after taking 7.7 billion steps, each partnership came up with their own way to represent a number that is so high it can be hard to grasp.

Beginning the school year with a short PBL unit allowed the students a fun and engaging way to ease into the school year and get to know each other, while also giving Kim a chance to practice the fundamentals of PBL and learn more about her students’ interests through the decisions they made while completing the project.  Do you use PBL in your classroom?  What is your favorite PBL unit to teach?  Share in the comments below!

We The People of the United States, In Order to Teach on Constitution Day, Need Some Great Resources!

 

download
https://www.georgefox.edu/academics/undergrad/departments/polisci/resources/constitution-day.html

Constitution Day became a national observance in 2004, when Senator Robert Byrd lobbied for a bill designating September 17 as the day for citizens to commemorate the signing of the U.S. Constitution and learn more about our founding document. Senator Byrd once said, “Our ideals of freedom, set forth and realized in our Constitution, are our greatest export to the world.”

He added the Constitution Day clause to his 2004 federal spending bill because he believed that all citizens should know about their rights as outlined in the Constitution. This clause mandates the teaching of the Constitution in schools that receive federal funds, as well as federal agencies.

Need some ideas? Start with these:

What are you planning on doing in your classroom for Constitution Day?  Share your resources in the comments section below!

Teacher’s Deserve More Than An Apple! KCSS Teacher of the Year Award

all winners

Nominations for the 2018 KCSS Teacher of the Year are now being accepted at both the elementary (K-6) and secondary (7-12) levels. Winners will be announced at the fall state social studies conference and are awarded $250, conference registration, and travel expenses. Both winners are automatically considered for the Kansas State Combined Teaching Award and are also eligible for the National Council of the Social Studies Teacher of the Year.

Continue reading Teacher’s Deserve More Than An Apple! KCSS Teacher of the Year Award