All posts by cassiemedley

About cassiemedley

Instructional Coach at Seaman Middle School

Let Freedom Ring!

freeport-illinois-fireworks-2017Anyone else hear Martina McBride belting out a hit when you read that title?

For the majority of you (I hope), it is summer break and you aren’t spending too much time thinking about lesson planning. But it’s never a bad idea to have some great Independence Day lesson plans in your back pocket for a rainy day!  All of my 4th of July lesson planning came when I was running a preschool summer camp; squeeze some glue on a black piece of construction paper, throw some glitter at it, and BOOM . . . a firework!

Luckily these resources have a bit more history to them for those teachers that like to cover some actual content in their classrooms!

Don’t forget to check back later this fall for a collection of Constitution Day lesson plans and resources!

And Rotate! Blended Learning in the Social Studies Classroom

gonzalez-inclassflip-stations
Image from Jennifer Gonzalez of Cult of Pedagogy

When I mention stations in the classroom, does your mind automatically jump to the organized chaos of a Kindergarten classroom? Could I convince you to jump to a social studies classroom instead?  Station Rotation is another Blended Learning model that promotes technology integration and differentiation, while enhancing learning in the classroom.

 

Stations are a great way to provide students with content through a variety of learning activities. Students can be working individually, with partners or small groups, with the teacher, and with or without technology all in the same class at the same time. Sound like organized chaos that could work in your classroom? Continue reading And Rotate! Blended Learning in the Social Studies Classroom

Under Contract: Blended Learning in the Social Studies Classroom

downloadTechnology integration, individualized learning, differentiation, data based decision making, standards driven content . . . the list of expectations in any given lesson could go on and on, but how do teachers go about efficiently meeting all of these demands in their classrooms?

Blended Learning is a great solution that many teachers are turning to, and one model frequently used is Learning Contracts.  These contracts are agreements between the teacher and their students, which allows students some choice in their learning while requiring students to meet conditions set by the teacher.  Contracts outline an entire lesson or unit for students before they begin learning the content, providing them with what they will be learning, how they will learn it, due dates, and assessments.

Continue reading Under Contract: Blended Learning in the Social Studies Classroom

KCSS Judy Cromwell Excellence in Teaching Awards

large_kcss toyKCSS is now accepting nominations for the 2017 Judy Cromwell Excellence in Teaching Awards.  This award is intended to reward and encourage high quality instruction in the social studies. Winners of the award exhibit innovative and effective instructional strategies, utilize state and national standards, foster a spirit of inquiry, develop democratic beliefs and values, and participate in professional organizations.  Nominees for the award must be presently serving as a social studies educator (K-12) with at least a half-time appointment and have taught a minimum of three years at the designated grade level. Awards will be given at K-6 and 7-12 grade levels.

If you are interested in nominating a social studies teacher, or you would like to nominate yourself, please complete and submit the nomination form.  Complete nomination packets (1-2 page letter from nominee, professional resume, and 2 letters of recommendation) can then be submitted to either the email or mailing address listed at the top of the nomination form.

Complete nomination packets must be submitted by September 15th, winners will be notified by October 1st, and are expected to attend the Kansas Social Studies Conference in Wichita on November 5th & 6th.  Winners will be announced during a reception at the conference on Sunday night 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 Award.

Download the information sheet for additional details about the award.