From the Editors
Betts, Brenda, Schell, Emily M., Social Studies Review
Most of our students - all teacher credential candidates - enter our Teacher Education programs with a similar introduction: / want to make a difference in the lives of children. We are fairly certain that these comments have echoed throughout the halls of K- 12 campuses as well institutions of higher education for generations. We know that teachers desire to make a difference in the lives of children. However, we wonder about those children and how they make a difference in our lives. What influences a child to embrace a cause and work tirelessly toward a solution? How does a child effectively approach a problem and what tools are at that child's disposal? Who and where are these children who advocate for others, the environment, and issues that may seem unsurmountable?
Guest Editor Dr. Brenda Betts introduced her idea for this issue's theme almost two years ago. She has since worked closely with her own teacher credential candidate students as well as veteran educators and fellow professors to develop a diverse collection of articles around the theme How do Children Make a Difference? The results are unique, informative, and inspiring. This issue features articles that are based in real-world examples of students in action. We trust you will enjoy learning about the remarkable ideas, inventions, solutions, and strategic plans developed by children who identified a need, asked lots of questions, and then got to work.
We hope that you will see your students (and perhaps yourself) in many of these stories. We encourage you to share these examples with your students and follow the examples presented - by supporting established programs or creating new ones to meet a need that exists in your own community. Part of the success of these children who made a difference is their ability to inspire others to continue seeking and making a difference - regardless of their age and access to resources.
This issue also features two Special Interest articles submitted by Dr. Tom Owens (Sacramento, CA), and Jacob Neumann (Houston, TX) related to students and Social Studies literature. Owens' article features questions asked by fourth grade students reading Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl as a selection in their reading program. While the reading program is widely used in California classrooms, our History-Social Science Standards do not provide adequate context for this historical period. …