NHD is the best social studies style program I have seen that gets students to apply their knowledge and skills to a real world question, and engage with the wider community about their research and passions.
After a well needed summer respite another school year has started. One of the things I am most excited about is teaching our new 9th grade course. A major benefit of teaching at a private international school is curriculum flexibility. If our department sees a need to fill curriculum gaps or to make adjustments to … Continue reading The flexibility to design a new course is another reason I love international schools.
As students grow older they ask fewer questions. How can teachers fight back against this trend, integrating questioning strategies into their pedagogy in order to encourage inquiry and analytical depth?
"Doing Inquiry" can be easy, and does not always have to involve huge projects. Embedding small protocols and activities that introduce the various components and stages of inquiry help scaffold towards the larger projects that empower students and enrich traditional curriculum. I've learned that inquiry should not be a "special activity" but a frequent, even daily, classroom routine. Here are some strategies I have found success with.
The content of history curriculum is constantly growing and teachers have less and less time to teach it. Teachers need strategies to guide content selection, make courageous deletions, and unlock the potential of history education. This includes involving student choice and inquiry into the process.
My unit design process for a thematic course involves overcoming several challenges: content and skill selection, assessment design, and leaving space for inquiry, scaffolding, and differentiation. A healthy dose of backwards design alongside the four non-negotiables of my own process end up making things work.