Monday, October 15, 2018

October #ELLEdTech Twitter Chat: Social Studies

Sadly, in the era of No Child Left Behind, the teaching of Social Studies became an afterthought.  Since in most states it wasn't tested like Language Arts and Math were, it got short shrift in school schedules.  Indeed, in many districts, it was subsumed into other subjects and wasn't taught as a discrete subject at all.

But Social Studies, which includes the topics of history, geography, civics, and economics, is hugely important.  Without an informed citizenry, a country cannot function effectively.  And for English Language Learners, many of whom are immigrants, learning about the history and culture of their new country is crucial to successfully adjusting to their new life.  Even for first-generation and other ELLs, it's important to learn about the origins, concepts, and customs of the country they live in.

Social Studies was my favorite subject both as a student and a teacher.  I loved teaching about U.S. American culture when I worked at universities in Asia and about U.S. and world history and geography when I taught ELLs in Massachusetts.  My ESL Social Studies courses for middle schoolers were the classes I most enjoyed teaching and it's why the majority of resources in my TpT store have a Social Studies focus.

So I am very pleased to announce that Laurah, my co-host from Tools for Teachers by Laurah J, and I will be discussing Tech Tools for Teaching Social Studies for the October #ELLEdTech chat, which is this coming Sunday, October 21st.  The focus will be on social studies in general, such as geography and history; we'll leave civics and economics for future chats.  As usual, the chat will start at 4:00pm Pacific, 7:00pm Eastern, and 11:00pm UTC time.  Below are the details.

You are invited to join the next #ELLEdTech Twitter chat on October 21st to discuss using Tech Tools to Teach Social Studies! | The ESL Nexus
Join us -- All educators are welcome!  Source: The ESL Nexus
Schedule and Questions
7:00 = Introduction:  Tell us your name, location, level/grade and subject taught. #ELLEdTech
7:05 = Q1: What tech tools do you use to help your students learn Social Studies, Geography or History? #ELLEdTech
7:13 = Q2:  How do these tools help students learn about Social Studies, Geography or History?  #ELLEdTech
7:21 =  Q3:  What are the advantages & benefits of using these tech tools for teaching about Social Studies, Geography or History? #ELLEdTech
7:29 = Q4:  Are there any cons or drawbacks teachers or students might have when using these tools? #ELLEdTech
7:37 = Q5: What advice do you have for teachers who want to use technology to help ELLs learn Social Studies, Geography or History? #ELLEdTech

Directions for Joining the Chat
1. Log into Twitter on Sunday; the chat runs from 7:00 - 7:45pm Eastern.
2. Search for tweets with the hashtag #ELLEdTech in the search bar.  Make sure to click “All tweets.”
3. The first five minutes will be spent introducing ourselves.
4. Starting at 7:05, @ESOL_Odyssey or @The_ESL_Nexus will post questions every 8 minutes using Q1, Q2, Q3, etc. to identify the questions and the hashtag #ELLEdTech.
5.  Answer the questions by prefacing them with A1, A2, A3, etc. and use the hashtag #ELLEdTech.
6.  Follow any teachers who respond and are also using #ELLEdTech.
7.  Like (click the heart icon) and post responses to other teachers' tweets.

You can schedule your answers to the questions in advance by using an online scheduler such as TweetDeck or HootSuite (and remember to use A1, A2, etc. and #ELLEdTech).  Links are encouraged, but use tinyurl, bitly, or to shorten your link so it can be included in your tweet.  Just click one of those links, paste the longer link in the app's box to shorten it for Twitter, then paste the shortened link into your tweet. If you have relevant images, we encourage you to post them, too.

Is this your first Twitter chat? Here are our rules:
1. Please stay on topic.
2. Please do not post about paid products unless explicitly asked.
3. If you arrive after the chat has started, please try to read the previous tweets before joining in.
4. Feel free to just read, like, and/or retweet if you prefer -- we know the first time can be a little overwhelming!
5. Always use the hashtag #ELLEdTech when tweeting.
6. Make sure your twitter feed is set to "public." (And do remember that Twitter is completely public; that means anyone--students, parents, administrators--may see what you tweet.)

You are welcome to let your teacher friends who might be interested in joining us know about this Twitter chat. We look forward to chatting with you on Sunday!