Why Engaging Students with Politics is Worthwhile

One of my friends approached me last week while at church. Now an administrator, he was a teacher who taught at Dover High School at the height of the 'intelligent design' debate, where a school board wanted it taught instead of the theory of evolution. He taught biology, nonetheless. In initiating the conversation, he said, “I [...]

Distrust of Facts Highlights Need to Return to Primary Sources

"Get your facts first," quips satirist Mark Twain. "Then you can distort them as much as you please." These words were first put to print in an 1899 Rudyard Kipling interview of the timeless sage, but they could have just as easily been written yesterday. In an era where the news makers are jabbing back [...]

Why This Social Studies Teacher Attends All Inaugurations

"I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States... So help me God." The first time these words were spoken was during George Washington's First Inaugural whereby [...]

By | 2017-01-23T11:25:12+00:00 January 23rd, 2017|Current Events in Education, Opinion, Social Studies|1 Comment

Conference Review: National Council for Social Studies

The National Council for Social Studies had its 96th annual conference this past week in Washington, DC. Like the NEA’s Representative Assembly, the assembly is held in the nation’s capital during election years. It marked my first in attendance. Being from central Pennsylvania, I’m fortunate enough to be able to drive to the District of [...]

By | 2016-12-05T19:24:47+00:00 December 5th, 2016|Classroom Leadership, Common Core, Featured, Social Studies|0 Comments

I Think I Failed You – A Civics Teacher’s Letter to her Former Students

Dear Former Students, I have started this letter a thousand times in my head in the last week. It’s hard to get past the first line: I fear I may have failed you as your Civics teacher. You have probably known me for many years as the one person in your life with unfailing trust [...]