Social Studies in Action can be used for individual or group professional development, viewed in real time or on videotape.* The Web guide was designed to help you get the most out of each video. The guide is also available in print form, which you can download from this Web site or purchase at www.learner.org. Before watching, review the Video Summary and About the Class sections of the guide. After watching, you can follow the viewing activities listed in the guide, including a second viewing of selected segments. If you are working in a group, discuss the questions provided in the guide; if you are working alone, write down your responses for later reflection.
*See the broadcasts on the Annenberg Channel or streamed on the Annenberg Media Web site, or find out how to purchase videos and the print guide at www.learner.org.
To help you get the most out of each video, the professional development guide is organized into six parts.
1. Video Summary
This section includes a short summary of the videotaped lesson, a brief overview of the class, and a list of themes and national standards addressed in the lesson. Use this information to determine which lessons will best meet your content and/or methodology needs.
2. About the Class
This section is divided into two parts: Classroom Profile and Lesson Background. The Classroom Profile establishes the larger context, including the school community, where the lesson fits within the course curriculum, and students' prior knowledge. Information from teacher interviews provides details about the lesson goals and objectives. The Lesson Background highlights each lesson's content and methodology. Read this section before viewing the video.
3. Watching the Video
This section is divided into four parts: Before You Watch, Watch the Video, Reflecting on the Video, and Looking Closer. Before You Watch poses several questions to activate your current knowledge through reflection, discussion, or both. Watch the Video asks you to take notes on points you find interesting, surprising, or especially important as you watch the video. Reflecting on the Video presents questions to structure your review of your notes. Finally, Looking Closer has you take a second look at specific teaching strategies within the video.
4. Connecting to Your Teaching
This section includes Reflecting on Your Practice, questions that connect the video to your own teaching; and Taking It Back to Your Classroom, practical ideas related to the lesson that you can implement in your class.
This section lists the National Council for the Social Studies themes and content standards that correlate to the lesson.
This section offers print and Web resources related to the lesson, for both teachers and their students.
Tips for Facilitators
The following facilitator tips can enhance the professional development experience:
- Review the Web or print guide prior to running a study group or workshop.
- Print and duplicate the Video Summary and About the Class sections of the guide; have all participants read prior to viewing the lesson.
- Use the suggested questions and continue with other questions that interest you and your colleagues.
- Allow enough time to wait for participants' responses.