Social Education

Official journal of the National Council for the Social Studies.

Articles from Vol. 65, No. 1, January

A World War II Oral History Project for Eighth Graders
Beginning in 1995, my eighth grade social studies students have participated in a World War II Oral History Project. They study World War II, learn about oral history research methods, and then interview an elderly relative or neighbor about his or...
Creating Public Spaces in the Social Studies Classroom
MY REMARKS THIS MORNING are intended to accomplish two things. The first is to give a very brief overview of some of the major initiatives NCSS has undertaken this year. My second goal is to share with you some of my thoughts (and dreams) about social...
Doing REAL History: Citing Your Mother in Your Research Paper
This article is for all those secondary teachers who have assigned oral history projects that their students may have enjoyed but somehow did not consider to be "real" history. It describes how a research paper that invited students to incorporate...
Editor's Notebook
LAST NOVEMBER and December, as we were preparing this long-planned issue on the teaching of history, it was clear that the unfolding drama of the unsettled presidential election was itself making history. Public attention was suddenly riveted on the...
EMPATHIZING WITH THE MANY VOICES OF THE PAST: Two Teachers Help Their Students Connect with United States History
For those of us who are fascinated by United States history, student cries of "boring" and "meaningless" are unsettling and, perhaps, somewhat puzzling. Within the study of history, many of us see a kind of symmetry between past and present, a story...
Frederic Remington's Image of the Frontier
"NO MATTER HOW THE SETTLEMENT of the West is interpreted, one fact stands out above the rest: whites took land from the Indians"(1) Despite a Supreme Court decision favorable to the Cherokees, their removal along with other southeastern tribes to an...
HARD TIMES AND NEW DEALS: Teaching Fifth Graders about the Great Depression
THE GREAT DEPRESSION that began in 1929 and persisted until America's entry into World War II was the most devastating economic crisis our nation has ever endured. Widespread unemployment and a pervasive sense of despair caused many people to question...
Letters
Bioethics Cases and Issues I was delighted to read the article by Ruth Levy Guyer and others about "Bioethics Cases and Issues" as enrichment activities (Social Education, November/December 2000). However, I would urge teachers and administrators...
Notable Irish American of the 1800s
The Great Irish Famine altered more than Irish history; the Irish who emigrated to the United States, Canada, Australia, and England became citizens of those nations. In the U.S. federal census of 1900, 44 million Americans reported their ethnicity...
Oral History Research: Internet Resources and Reports
"When I was in school, I didn't like history. Now I wish I had paid more attention, because l find it absolutely fascinating." -- Overheard at a New Year's Eve party For many young people, change over time is an abstraction that is hard to grasp....
Prospects for the Electoral College after Election 2000
The Electoral College ... is the very model of up-to-date constitutional flexibility. --Martin Diamond(1) The impetus for abolishing the electoral college is as strong as it is simple. No sane electoral system awards victory to second place....
The 1963 March on Washington
ON AUGUST 28, 1963, more than 250,000 demonstrators descended upon the nation's capital to participate in the "March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom". Not only was it the largest demonstration for human rights in United States history, but it also...
The Great Irish Famine
Life and Work in America Editor's note: This article and the following one are the last in a series about the Great Irish Famine. (See the September 2000 issue of Middle Level Learning.) The series so far has discussed the history of the potato...
The Name It Game: A Chapter Review and Competition
This game has become a bit of a tradition in our school, and students enjoy it quite a lot. It is designed for a 90-minute block period and should be used after the students have been working on a unit of study for several days. The Name It Game...
Treasures in Waiting
EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES at NARA PRESIDENTIAL LIBRARIES and REGIONAL RECORDS CENTERS IN THE FAMOUS CONCLUDING SCENE of Raiders of the Lost Ark, Steven Speilberg gave us an indelible image of what U.S. government warehousing might be like. As a...
Uncovering Pompeii: Examining Evidence
The lesson plan presented here appears in William W. Wilen, ed., Favorite Lesson Plans: Powerful Standards-Based Activities (Washington, DC: National Council for the Social Studies, 2000). Grade Level/Subject: Middle School-World Cultures NCSS...
Wandering Behind: Talking about Pearl Harbor
WHEN I WAS A KID my dad wouldn't talk about the war. He would talk about the Depression. How he and Uncle Mickey would catch strings of perch as long as their legs and haul them down to the German bar at the corner and sell them for Friday night fish...
What Can Forrest Gump Tell Us about Students' Historical Understanding?
HISTORICAL NARRATIVES envelop us everywhere--at home, at church, at the movies; in the buildings we inhabit, the parks we visit, the stamps we lick; in the days we take off from work, the newspapers we read, and the six-o'clock news we receive from...
Who Influences Social Studies?
If you would reap praise you must sow the seeds, gentle words and useful deeds. -- Benjamin Franklin In asking many colleagues, reviewing numerous publications, and pondering at length who influences social studies, I compiled a list of over...