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September 14, 2012
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Social Studies – Preparing Students for College, Career and Civic Life

  Teaching & Learning 
  • Civics education should actively engage students
    Rather than stick to facts, figures and memorization when teaching civics, educators should approach government and history education differently, writes Suzanne Schmitz, an attorney and professor emeritus from Southern Illinois University. Schmitz echoes retired Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor's call for civics education to focus on student participation. That means everything from role-playing in the classroom to volunteering with community projects, Schmitz writes in this opinion article. Southern Illinoisan (Carbondale, Herrin, Murphysboro) (9/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • The civics lessons of the election season
    Because of the great interest in politics accompanying the presidential campaign, teachers can use the 2012 election to teach their students about civic engagement and the role of the president. Webinars are being developed for teachers to apply campaign news and events into classroom-learning opportunities. "One of the most important things we can do is bring our students into the democracy," said Connecticut Secretary of the State Denise Merrill, who called the presidential election year "a teachable moment." (Conn.) (9/11) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
  Policy Watch 
  • Groups call for lawmakers, educators to work together
    Mississippi's teachers union and education advocates are calling on the the state Legislature to work with them to meet some of the challenges facing schools, such as merit pay for teachers and charter schools. Leaders in the Legislature say they already are working on an education agenda for the session coming up in January. "Let's make some sound decisions," said Kevin Gilbert, president of the 8,000-member Mississippi Association of Educators and a veteran social studies teacher. The Clarion-Ledger (Jackson, Miss.) (9/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Technology in the Classroom 
  • How teachers are using mobile phones in classroom lessons
    In this blog post, teachers in the United Kingdom offer their advice for using mobile phones in the classroom. Jo Debens, a geography teacher, has students using phones to share videos, record homework and conduct fieldwork using GPS technology and other software. Meanwhile, a computer-science teacher is introducing students to possible careers by teaching them how to make mobile applications. The Guardian (London)/Teacher Network Blog (9/10) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Social Studies & Civic Life 
  • Archaeologists may have found remains of King Richard III
    In an excavation under a Leicester, England, parking lot, British archaeologists looking for the remains of King Richard III have found a skeleton with injuries that could have been caused in battle. Richard III was the last English king to die in combat. Lab tests, including DNA test using samples from a descendant of the king's sister, will be done to help confirm whether the skeleton is in fact the infamous monarch. Reuters (9/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  NCSS Updates 
  • Civic Education Alignment Guide to the Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts
    This innovative resource published by the Los Angeles County Office of Education, in collaboration with the Trinity County Office of Education and California Campaign for the Civic Mission of Schools, provides English-Language Arts teachers with a civic education context for improving literacy skills, and offers social studies teachers a pedagogical framework for building literacy competencies needed for civic life. Download the resources. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • NCSS seeks members for awards selection committees
    NCSS is looking for members to serve on awards selection committees. The selection committees review nominations and select recipients of NCSS awards and grants. Committee members serve a three-year term and most committee work is conducted online. The application deadline is Oct. 31. Learn more and apply. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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Many wealthy people are little more than janitors of their possessions."
--Frank Lloyd Wright,
American architect

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