Saturday, July 14, 2012

Big Things Happening, So I'm Going to Blog It!

I did warn you all that I am a terrible blogger when it comes to consistency and timeliness. Look, I haven't been back for months! Yikes. Actually, I did blog in April, but using Tumblr, and that was for my amazing trip to Washington, D.C. with 20 jr. high students and World Strides student travel. I did a pretty good job updating that one, so feel free to check that out here.  Now I'm headed back to D.C. tomorrow. Crazy, I know! I was lucky enough to be chosen to participate in the Library of Congress's Summer Teacher's Institute for the next week. That means I get to spend a week with 25 teachers from around the country learning how to use the LOC primary sources, resources and tools to create more relevant, engaging and critical lessons for our students and teachers. We all know something about President Lincoln being shot at Ford's Theater, but what if you could see the actual journal of a Washington insider who was in D.C. at the time and was the first to hear the news? How much cooler does history get then? Our kids' textbooks are outdated, heavy and really only tell part of the story for a select bit of history the publishers decided should be told. Adding primary sources (documents from the period in time being studied) to our lessons and their experiences will create opportunities for new ways to view events, new discussions, and challenges to what they think they already know (or what the textbook tells them). I am super excited to learn more and then get to share. Don't worry, all posts this week won't be about teaching (for those of you who are not teachers), but I thought it was important that you knew why I was choosing to head into the temperature equivalent of Hell for a week all by myself.