One of the essential components in Language Arts, Social Studies, and Reading is the study of the human experience. For this course you will be examining key people, places and events, during the Age of Exploration by European explorers into the New World. Our culture is fascinated with this topic and there are ample film, literature, and classroom resources to help communicate the scope and importance of the discovery of the early Americas to our students. This course will provide curriculum ideas for Language Arts, Social Studies, and Reading teachers of grades K-12 that meet state standards.
This course will also provide video, literature and classroom resource ideas for teachers preparing for major themes of the Age of Exploration that can actively engage students around many of the major themes and events of this time period. There are books and videos on Explorers such as Christopher Columbus, Marco Polo, Magellan, Ponce De Leon, Cortes and more. Many of these films are available at local libraries, from NetFlix, in video stores for purchase, and ESDs. You will choose 8 videos and 2 novels to view and write a unit plan on how you’ll use some of these in your teaching situation. In addition to film and literature, this course will also provide classroom resources on Exploration such as websites that offer interactive maps, lesson plans, art, music, lectures from leading scholars, etc.
If you choose NetFlix (but is not required), a three-month subscription is about $30. (NetFlix also has an online video capability with the right operating system.) You will need to have access to both a DVD player and a VHS video player to enjoy the full range of media choices.
We advise you to review and download a summary of the course syllabus
Climate change poses the single largest, global threat to life on Earth, and yet the United States and our schools lag far behind the international community in educating and acting responsibly to mitigate the causes and effects of a warming planet. This online course for grades 3-7 teachers uses excellent platforms developed by NASA and the EPA to educate about the science of climate change in kid-friendly, interdisciplinary ways. Youthful graphics, games, lesson samples that cut across science, social studies and math, virtual expeditions to places where climate change is visible, CO2 footprint calculators and more make this a rich learning environment from which grades 3-7 teachers will develop their own units and themes—whether that’s oceans, birds, butterflies, fish, trees, fresh water supplies. Many of your common science units can be modified with a climate change perspective (ie ocean life, plants and animals).