I've written and published a book of important Supreme Court cases. Although I ended up leaving "ancillaries" out of the book, I have questions written over each of the major cases and several graphic organizers which someone other than myself might find useful. So here's the deal - if you buy the book (which, let's face it, you desperately want to do anyway) and want the supplemental materials, I'm posting them here to download and do with as you see fit.
In Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet, Juliet laments that she cannot be with Romeo largely because of their last names. Their families are enemies and neither would ever accept the other into their homes. Standing on her balcony, unaware that he’s listening, she rejects the idea that names could be so important. Why should it matter what you’re called if you’re as awesome as Romeo - at least in Juliet’s eyes?
I'm a big fan of reading in social studies. I realize there are reasons we don't do more of it, but I don't want 'lack of ideas' to be one of them. Questions about why and how and when to fit in reading to an already overcrowded schedule deserve more time and wisdom than I'm able to give them here, but that hasn't stopped me from anything else on this site, so...
Most of us are assigned some fragment of curriculum to teach with far too little time to cover it adequately. It's the nature of public education, perhaps even a necessary evil. I'm not sure what a class would look like that claimed in a fluid whole to cover all of known history, everywhere in the world, since we first wiggled forth from the primordial ooze.
The textbook would be huge - even without ancillaries.
One of the fundamental skills I try to teach my students is to ask good questions. And they don't have to mean them.
I mean, it's great if they do. If there's something in class which catches their attention - even for a moment - by all means, they should speak up. "Why yes, Jacobie - we DID used to value 'due process' in this country... long, long ago."
It's inherently vain to post lesson ideas, particulary those including thoughts on how to teach something in this or that situation. Most everyone reading this blog or receiving the email updates already does many things better than me and even more stuff of which I've never even thought. And yet...
To begin posting 15 years of my favorite lessons, materials, ideas – most borrowed from sources I don’t even remember and modified on the fly no matter how many times I use them – is insane, right? The reasons it’s a horrible idea are legion. But I moved from a blog to an actual website to allow for the possibility, and for a year now I’ve done only minimal work on that part of things while focusing on wowing the world with my insights, charm, and general lack of decency or shame once I’m riled about something.
But it’s time.