Look through the door of one classroom and you might see the students hunched over, not engaged, even frowning. Look through the door of another classroom, and you might see a room full of lively students, eager, engaged and participating. What is the second teacher doing that the first one isn't? He or she is using creativity in that classroom.
Researchers in Michigan showed that project-based learning in high-poverty communities can produce statistically significant gains in social studies and informational reading—see how they did it in this video.
Minecraft is no longer a new tool in the field of game-based learning. Because Minecraft has such open possibilities and potential, teachers have been experimenting with different ways to use it in the classroom for a while now to teach math concepts like ratios and proportions, while others use it to support student creativity and collaboration.
Do you wish your students could better understand and critique the images that saturate their waking life? That's the purpose of visual literacy (VL), to explicitly teach a collection of competencies that will help students think through, think about and think with pictures.
The Common Core Learning Standards describe the importance of teaching students how to comprehend informational text. Primary source documents are artifacts created by individuals during a particular period in history. This could be a letter, speech, photograph or journal entry. If you're looking to integrate social studies into your literacy block, try out one of these resources for primary source documents.
Teach your students about making positive change in the world by connecting with them, discussing real-world problems and multiple perspectives, creating classroom community, and including authentic assessment.