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Social Education May/June 2011


The Social Studies are Essential to a Well-Rounded Education
Arne Duncan

Educators and policymakers need to recognize that social studies is a core subject, critical to sustaining an informed democracy and a globally competitive workforce. Secondary/High School    


The Essential Role of Social Studies: Reflections on Arne Duncan's Article
Steve Goldberg, Syd Golston, Michael Yell, Gayle Thieman, Peggy Altoff

NCSS President Steve Goldberg and former presidents Syd Golston, Michael Yell, Gayle Thieman, and Peggy Altoff point out the effects that education policies have had on the social studies and call on our national leaders to change these policies.    

Teaching with Documents

Page from the Log Book of the USS Harriet Lane and Painting by Thomas P. Rossiter, Related to the Prince of Wales's 1860 Visit to Mount Vernon
Lee Ann Potter, Elizabeth K. Eder, and Michael Hussey

The featured document and painting about the then-Prince of Wales's visit to Mount Vernon serve as excellent primary sources for a lesson on American diplomatic history. Secondary/High School     US History

Looking at the Law

Is Julian Assange an International Version of Daniel Ellsberg and WikiLeaks the Modern Equivalent of the Pentagon Papers?
William H. Freivogel

A classroom discussion on the release of secret diplomatic cables by the WikiLeaks website can lead to important questions about the First Amendment, the Espionage Act, and press treatment of national security secrets. Secondary/High School     Law-Related


Teaching about Starbucks and Consumer Literacy
Joan Malczewski, Debra Plafker-Gutt, and Robert Cohen

Students learn about their own roles as consumers and about mass advertising through an in-depth study of a company that is ubiquitous in their lives. Secondary/High School    


Learning about America, and about Buying from Starbucks
Bryant Simon

Studying the everyday things we buy can teach us about who we are, what we care about, and the companies that cater to those desires. Secondary/High School    

Lesson Plan

Examining Corporate Messaging: Do the Claims Hold up to the Truth?
Debra Plafker-Gutt

In this lesson, students investigate corporate and consumer behavior by collecting Starbucks artifacts, creating their own survey, and examining an ethnographic study. Secondary/High School    


The Carter G. Woodson Book Awards

The 2010 award winners include books about a teenage civil rights pioneer, a Native American leader, and the immigrant experience in America.    


Manifest Destiny and Competing Voices on the Eve of the Cherokee Removal
Prentice T. Chandler

Exploring westward expansion and the Cherokee Trail of Tears with primary sources from multiple perspectives enables students to develop a more nuanced understanding about the concept of Manifest Destiny. Secondary/High School    

Surfing the Net

More Recommended Favorites/Bookmarks for Teaching Social Studies with the Internet
C. Frederick Risinger

Here is an updated list of educational websites the author considers most worthy of bookmarking. Secondary/High School    


The People Unite: Learning Meaningful Civics Online
Annette Boyd Pitts, Charles Dziuban, and Jeffrey W. Cornett

Students learn how to address community issues and the role of governments when they partner with classes from other countries through an online civic education problem-solving model. Secondary/High School    


Film Review: The Response
Greg Snoad

The Response is a classroom-friendly film and excellent teaching tool for addressing the conflict between national security and constitutional rights. Secondary/High School    

NCSS Notebook

2010 NCSS House of Delegates Resolutions
March/April 2011 (Volume 75, Number 2)

Secondary/High School