8th Grade GIANTS Session 1 Recap

Today kicked off a new year of GIANTS, this time centered around 8th Grade United States History!  For those of you who are taking this course online and on your own time, after each session you’ll need to visit this page and “sign in” by answering the questions at the end as a comment.

The first session is a long one!  Weighing in at about 5.5 hours (breaks have been removed from the video recap) we cover quite a bit of ground walking you through the first weeks of instruction.

The agenda for day 1 is shown below.  Scroll below for questions.

9:00 — 9:45 Unique components of the G.I.A.N.T.S. units—Beckie

*Literacy connections
*Spatial modes of thinking
*Universal themes of history (activity)
*Skills from The C3 Framework

9:45 — 10:15 Making Geographically Sound Decisions—Phil
10:15 — 10:30 BREAK
10:30 — 11:30 Unit 0—Sue, Kirk, Ruth

*A word or two about vocabulary strategies and dictionary sites—Sue
*Reading Strategies—Sue (15 min.)
*Core values and Constitutional principles—Kirk
*G>SPEC Strategy and History links—Ruth
*Lesson Procedures

11:30 — 12:00 LUNCH
12:00 — 1:00 *MI Open Book —Kirk

*General regions of the N. American continent—Phil (45 min.)

1:00 — 1:15 *Founding Fathers Quiz (10 min.)
1:15 — 1:45 *Overview of Lessons 1 & 2
1:45 — 2:00 BREAK
2:00 — 2:45 ”Reading is a Geographical Act”—Phil (45 min.)
2:45 — 3:30 Overview of Lessons 3 & 4 (25 min.)

Recap questions:

  1.  What is one thing from GIANTS 8th grade that you’re excited to try out this year with your students?
  2. What is one thing you would like more clarification from the authors and Dr. Gersmehl on?
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7th Grade Network Recap

It’s here – the final weeks of the school year and the final unit for the Ancient World history course!  We are a little behind getting the last bits and pieces up for you on the website as we were all busy with the MCSS conference at Kent ISD.

Your final reflection questions:

  • (The usual)  What are you most excited to teach from this final set of unit plans?
  • What have you noticed about your students study of the ancient world this year.
    • How have they done?
    • How have you done?
    • What differences have you noticed between GIANTS and what you’ve done before?

6th Grade Network Recap – April

It’s here – the final weeks of the school year and the final unit for GIANTS 6th grade!  We are a little behind getting the last bits and pieces up for you on the website as we were all busy with the MCSS conference at Kent ISD.

Your final reflection questions:

  • (The usual)  What are you most excited to teach from this final set of unit plans?
  • What have you noticed about your students study of world geography this year.
    • How have they done?
    • How have you done?
    • What differences have you noticed between GIANTS and what you’ve done before?

 

6th Grade Recap – March Session

The recap for 6th grade will appear on the website soon, but for now find it here:  http://connect.oaisd.org/p4cbkwkla3i/

We went long, but it was worth it – especially in a unit about trade and the economy.

Questions for reflection:

  1.  What are you most excited about in this unit?
  2. How are your students finding the 6th Grade GIANTS curriculum.
  3. If you could recommend one thing about GIANTS to a 5th or 8th grade teacher (since that’s where we’re going next year) what would it be?

 

 

7th Grade Network Recap

The recap for the March 14th (Happy Pi Day!) GIANTS session is available at:  http://connect.oaisd.org/p2bnl7dfmfv/

The portal page will be updated next week so you can grab it from the website too.

We discussed a lot in terms of what’s happening with Unit 6.  Amy, our illustrious presenter will also be working on the corresponding chapter for MI Open Book coming up for a fall release.  As for what will be in it – you got a taste with tonight’s presentation.

Questions for reflection:

  1.  How comfortable do you feel teaching a “new era” in 7th grade?
  2. Have the GIANTS lessons thusfar been beneficial for you as a teacher?
  3. How are your students finding GIANTS?
  4. What are you most excited to teach from this unit?

 

“See” you next month!

6th Grade Network Recap

Apologies for the delay on the 6th Grade Network Recap!

The topic this month was “culture” and a variety of instructional strategies and new activities were shared.  (Note:  This is the month where the “new” clickable version of maps for Chrome users in particular make their way to the 6th grade course.  The other clickable maps will be updated as soon as Dr. Gersmehl and I agree on colors for the buttons.)

This month the questions for SCECH participants:

  1.  What are some ways you’ve taught about culture in previous years?
  2. Which of the instructional strategies are you most excited to use with kids?

 

Bigger blog recaps happen when the authors give me an agenda to follow as we go through, so my apologies for the brevity!

Two units remain!

 

7th Grade Network Recap (January)

Sound issues at the remote site plagued the beginning of our session but – we did end up getting folks to call in to my cell and we went on that way.  We began by having remote site participants have the discussion over two questions:

  1. What role do religious beliefs and practices have on the development of history, culture, and society?
  2. What role do history, society, and culture have on the development of religious beliefs?

I will include these at the end again but this is part of the writing assignment below for our “watch later” participants seeking SCECHs.

Phil moved then into “Religion:  Just another Commodity to be traded?” (link to this presentation available here:

https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B_WogoheQGj0TUNLMXZ1Q2dabzhUQkhWbUZ1dFJLdmhDOVA4/view

The student version clickable map for Eastern Hemisphere Trade Routes is available here:

http://ss.oaisd.org/EasternHemisphereTrade.html

From there Lisa Voss came on to talk about some of the structural portions of the 7th grade GIANTS curriculum and we had discussion both on the structure of the materials (and how they will change) as well as a brief discussion on the compelling questions.

We then went to break – enjoy 10 minutes of film looking at the main screen everyone!

After break we talked about the Spread of Islam and there is a fantastic new clickable map (new version where you can turn layers on and off of without hitting “clear map”) that helps show students the spread over time.  This is available at:  http://ss.oaisd.org/SpreadOfIslam.html

From there the discussion went into Major World Religions overall.  Phil has another clickable map (I still have to work on this one – it must have come in today!)

In all, the whole evening was an illuminating look at the many different ways to discuss two very important standards from 7th grade discussing the world religions in your classroom.

Your reflection questions for those doing this for SCECHS:

  1. What role do religious beliefs and practices have on the development of history, culture, and society?
  2. What role do history, society, and culture have on the development of religious beliefs?
  3. What is something you’ve done in the past to teach religion in your SS course?