Category: Methods

Methods

How to Use a Mock Congressional Hearing In Your Social Studies Class

Video still of a Congressional hearing on North Korean nuclear weapons, a good example of a culminating activity for a Classroom Deliberations

A mock Congressional hearing is a form of experiential learning. It is a great summative activity for a social studies class that has learned about a controversial issue in public policy. This could be used in conjunction with current events, and it could also be used to assess student understanding of controversial issues in history. […]

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Methods

Take a Stand: Gauging Where Students Are on Controversial Issues

A take a stand activity with six silhouettes standing in a row with speech bubbles saying "Raise the Wage!" and "Don't Do It!"

The “Take a Stand” activity is a method for teaching controversial issues. The idea is simple. You ask a controversial question, and students line up according to their opinion. This can be used as an introductory activity, as a formative assessment, or as a closure activity. The method is also sometimes called the “continuum” method […]

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Methods

Use Themes and Essential Questions to Make Social Studies More Civics Oriented

Pile of old books with one in focus and the rest blurred.

Part of the reason we’re so bad at teaching civics is curriculum – and for two reasons. When it comes to social studies, we try to teach way too much history and we almost always insist on organizing it chronologically. The two problems are self-reinforcing. When you orient the entire curriculum around time periods, you […]

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