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Community Scholar Speakers

NCSS Communities have invited these prominent scholars to speak on issues related to their missions. Attend sessions of interest to learn about the discussion topics and NCSS Communities.

Glenn Mitoma

"Human Rights Education: The Last, Best Hope for Social Studies"

Sponsored by the Human Rights Education Community

How do we unleash students’ passion for building a humane, just, and equitable world and transform our classrooms and schools into vibrant, inclusive spaces? How do we support our communities as they deepen their democratic commitments?  Explore the principles and practices of human rights as a paradigm for making Social Studies relevant in our current moment of crisis and recurring community conflict. This session introduces draft guidelines for aligning human rights education with the C3 Framework and NCSS Standards for Preparation of Social Studies Teachers. 


Jon Mueller

"Thinking Like a Scientist: Using Formative Assessment to Develop Scientific Thinking Skills"

Sponsored by the Psychology Community

Jon Mueller is a Professor of Psychology at North Central College in Naperville, IL. He is the author of several psychology websites including Resources for the Teaching of Social Psychology and Authentic Assessment Toolbox, and author of the text Assessing Critical Skills. His research has particularly focused on science in the media, examining how well people interpret scientific claims and evidence presented in the media and how we can help students improve those skills.

José António Brandão

"Pathways of Change: Natives and French in the Great Lakes"

Sponsored by the Canada Community

Examine Native-French interactions in the Great Lakes region.  Fur trade across waterways in the region changed both cultures, helped forge alliances and profoundly impacted colonial North America.

Michael Meyer

The Road to Sleeping Dragon: Learning China from the Ground Up

Sponsored by the Asia Community and World History Community

In 1995, at the age of twenty-three, Michael Meyer joined the Peace Corps and, after rejecting offers to go to seven other countries, he was sent to a tiny town in Sichuan.  Knowing nothing about China, or even how to use chopsticks, Mr. Meyer wrote Chinese words up and down his arms so he could hold conversations, and , per a Communist dean's orders, jumped into teaching his students about the Enlightenment, the stock market, and Beatles lyrics.  Soon he realized his Chinese counterparts were just as bewildered by the country's changes as he was.  With humor and insight, Mr. Meyer puts readers in his novice shoes, winding across the length and breadth of his adopted country--from a terrifyinng bus attack on arrival, to remote Xinjiang and Tibet, and his future wife's Manchurian family, and into efforts to protect China's heritage at place like "Sleeping Dragon," the world's largest panda preserve.

In the last book of his China trilogy, Mr. Meyer tells a story both deeply personal and universal, as he gains greater--if never complete--assurance, capturing what it feels like to learn a language, culture and history from the ground up.  He will recount his 20-year journey via photographs, as well as talking about the challenges of reporting from China.

Scott Waring and Richard Hartshorne

"Teaching with Primary Sources and Emerging Technologies"

Sponsored by the Teacher Education and Professional Development Community

Explore ways to integrate emerging technologies and primary sources into instruction.  Strategies for use in K-16 classrooms will be shared and discussed.