Using Oscar-nominated films in History Lessons

Thought the piece posted on the ASCD Brief website was worth taking a look at. As teachers we are always looking for ways to connect our past history to our current history and making it relevant for students. Below is a snippet from the website and the link which provides information on making connections to important periods of history. Notice there are lessons posted, along with resources to make it worthwhile to view. Through discussion  high level questions have been included to prompt students to be critical thinkers.

Three of this year’s Oscar contenders — “Lincoln,” “Argo” and “Zero Dark Thirty” — invite viewers to look at history, either through the lens of the distant past (as in the case of “Lincoln”) or through recent events (like “Zero Dark Thirty”), and to question the degree of truth and fiction at work in the retelling of these events.

These same three movies have also prompted some serious debate and reflection on American politics, and the direction the nation should be headed.

Environmental Science Class creates Energy Conservation Units

I had the opportunity today to lead a curriculum discussion with students in Rob McFall’s Environmental Science Class to assist them in developing Energy Conservation units for each campus in White Oak ISD.

I want to brag on the students in this class, as they were eager, took notes, ask questions, while knowing the tasks they have before them. There will be a huge support system along the way, but the responsibility of the work, and the end product, is on them.

We talked about developing curriculum, looking at and evaluating the state standards, writing lesson objectives, and correlating the appropriate age-level activities and instructional pieces for each campus and grade levels. They were provided with numerous resources, technology support, websites, state standards and student expectations, along with a timeline for completing the project and presenting it to district administrators and officials.

I was very excited to have the opportunity to work with this class, and salute Coach McFall and his students on moving to the next level with project-based learning. Our goal is to unveil the project (and the end product) is set for week of February 18, 2013.