During yesterday’s fantastic Kansas state social studies conference, I had the chance to talk with Melinda Stanley from the 2020 Census Civic Outreach Effort in the conference Vendor Village. She shared the following information about how teachers and students can get civically engaged with the Census process.
The Kansas State Department of Education in partnership with the U.S. Census Bureau is providing training & support for Kansas educators who sign up to help raise awareness & engage their local community in the 2020 Census.
Shape the future for your students and school. Fall recruitment is now live! Become an ambassador with the U.S. Census Bureau’s Statistics in Schools (SIS) program, which uses Census Bureau statistics to educate pre-K through 12th grade students about the importance of a complete and accurate census count.
SIS equips teachers with free and engaging activities to use in classrooms. For the 2019-2020 school year, these new materials teach students about the importance of the 2020 Census count and empowers them to share this knowledge with adults in their home.
The U.S. Census Bureau looks to Teacher SIS ambassadors to champion the program in their classrooms, schools, and communities, and in doing so promote a complete 2020 Census count. As leaders in the program, ambassadors will:
Promote national SIS events on social media platforms, leading up to and during events, to increase awareness and engagement.
Network with fellow ambassadors.
Receive exclusive 2020 Census promotional items for use in and outside the classroom.
Ideal candidates are active pre-K through 12th grade teachers who are excited to spearhead a national initiative at their schools while shaping the future of their communities through social media, collaboration, and leadership. Application reviewers will consider the following qualifications:
Past leadership positions or an expressed interest in gaining experience.
Knowledge of or experience with SIS materials.
A social media presence.
Making sure all children and families are counted in the 2020 Census is especially important for education. Responses to the 2020 Census survey will determine how more than $675 billion in federal funds is distributed to communities each year for the next 10 years, including money for school programs such as:
School lunch assistance
Title I funds
As an SIS ambassador with the U.S. Census Bureau, you will help your students, schools, and communities benefit from the 2020 Census. You and your students can get involved with a two step process:
1. Register with the KSDE to get specific training + student involvement + fun that equals making a difference. Click here to get involved!
2. Register with the U.S. Census Bureau by October 24 via email. ( CLMSO.SISambassador@census.gov) You get national involvement, training, and swag!
If you miss the October 24 deadline, you can STILL register to be part of the Kansas effort!
How many times have you had someone outside the education profession say this to you? If you are reading this blog post, chances are you know that it’s really not true. You probably know that teachers use these precious summer months to recharge, refuel, and LEARN. We strive to find ways to perfect our craft and answer questions that came up over the past school year.
This is the first summer that I did not physically attend multiple professional development conferences or workshops in June and July. I say “physically” because looking back on the past few months, I do feel that I attended professional development in a new and different way. Over the past year, I have found a new community on Instagram.
This community is filled with educators from all different content areas and age ranges. Educators are posting lesson plan ideas, classroom management strategies, classroom organization tips, and even personal stories and experiences. Many of them have stores on Teachers Pay Teachers, blogs, or vlogs and are sharing content / pedagogical strategies for the world to access at our finger tips.
The National WWII Museum has an amazing opportunity for teachers this summer. Trust me, you won’t want to miss this! But hurry – the deadline for applications is February 1, 2018.
Explore World War II in New Orleans and Hawaii!
Applications for The National WWII Museum’s Summer Teacher Institute are now OPEN! This professional development experience for middle and high school social studies teachers includes a weeklong seminar at the Museum in New Orleans (July 22-28, 2018), plus a trip to explore WWII-related historic sites in and around Pearl Harbor, Hawaii (July 21-27, 2019). This year’s institute focuses on the US Home Front, and will include seminar discussions with top WWII scholars, guided tours of the Museum’s innovative exhibits, artifact analysis, and interaction with WWII veterans. Participants receive up to six hours of graduate credit for participation. Travel, graduate tuition, and seminar materials are provided free of charge by the Museum. For full details and the application, visit nationalww2museum.org/institute.
Teachers of social studies across the curriculum probably don’t realize that they cover the issue of Social Stratification (social class systems, poverty, Karl Marx, etc) in their classes. Teachers of sociology probably could spend a whole month on the topic! Social Stratification is one of my favorite units in my semester-long sociology course. Last year, I had my students read Animal Farm (it’s not required in English anymore) and compare the animal’s problems with the issues of social class and social mobility.
I may do that again – just because, in my personal opinion, I think students still need to read this classic! But I have two other favorite activities to go with this unit:
First, students watch a few videos and we discuss some important vocabulary with Social Stratification. Then I have the students listen to “Livin’ on a Prayer” (Bon Jovi) and “Fast Car” (Tracy Chapman). They pick out the issues that relate to social stratification after listening to the songs and reading the lyrics. Next I set them free to find their own examples of stratification in music. Obviously there are some ground rules – nothing racially or sexually offensive. You could also make sure that the songs are clean, but I really want the students to look at the music that they like and pick out these issues within the songs they are listening to everyday. And like almost everything else, you’ll have those students who just google “Songs about social stratification” — normally they pick “Allentown” by Billy Joel.
But I do have some kids who really become more aware of social class issues that people write about and how there are SO MANY songs with these issues to choose from! To complete this part of the unit, students view a Slide Mission with videos, notes, and responses embedded. I like this format because they can insert their YouTube videos right into Google Slides without me have to go search for them. A copy of what I used in my class can be found here.
After a class discussion about poverty in the U.S., we watch the ESPN 30 for 30 called “Fantastic Lies“. This is the story of the Duke LaCrosse team rape scandal back in 2006. I show this because it covers individuals from across social classes and their expectations vs. reality. Students who are unfamiliar with the story are always shocked once we get about three-fourths of the way through it! Afterwards, they will write a reflection (usually around 300 words) and they make connections with the episode and the terms we discussed regarding Social Stratification. I purchased this episode of 30 for 30 (Season 3, episode 6) on Amazon Prime Video.
Sociology teachers out there: I’d love to hear what you do in your classes to teach social stratification! Comment below.
Do you ever find yourself watching the news and they are discussing a political figure who holds an important role in our government and you have no idea who he or she is? Or maybe the opposite happens — you are teaching about the Constitution or the first Presidential Cabinet and you ask yourself, or even better – a student asks, “Who is the Secretary of Treasury right now?” No? Just me?
Senior U.S. Government was added to my course load this year and I vowed to make sure that my students (and let’s be honest…myself included) know the important officials in our national government. I created these posters (updated as of 7/30/17) that have the official portrait of government officials and jobs in the executive branch – well most of them (sorry Administrator of the Small Business Administration, you didn’t make the cut. But you are still very important). Also included are important White House staff members, congressional leaders, Supreme Court Justices, and Kansas congressmen (I could not contact Kevin Yoder to get a hi-res photo because I don’t live in his district! The photo is taken from his website) and governor. I included Elaine Duke as the Secretary of Homeland Security because she is the current Deputy Secretary and will most likely be moved up to head of that department. Also for my Kansas people, Sam Brownback is still awaiting Senate approval to move into his new role as Religious Ambassador so I included Jeff Colyer as well, he will serve out the remainder of Governor Brownback’s term until the next election in 2018.
Almost all of the photos were taken off of the official website from each individual. Some people didn’t have high-resolution photos available for download on their official website so those had to be found the good old fashioned way. Sources are linked in the file. Both editable and non-editable versions are available. You will need the font- KG Sorry Not Sorry Chub- to edit the labels. See the link to the Google Drive folder below and download! Hope this is helpful for you! If anything, it can be a good way to cover up a blank wall. Happy teaching!
**UPDATE: Since completing these posters back in June, I have had to edit them three times due to the frequent changes in our current administration! I will try to keep them updated as people are replaced.