Class 11: Teaching Social Studies with Data Visualizations

Today’s class will open with students doing 5-minute pitch sessions on their final project ideas. Students will get feedback and suggestions from their peers.

History and other humanities that tended to be strictly narrative are leveraging  data collection and display tools to spawn a new digital / data approach to teaching history and social science. See Digital Humanities Projects at Stanford

In today’s class we will explore a sampling of free online data visualization tools that can be used in the classroom. Students will be asked to incorporate one of these tools into a lesson design.

User defined world history data set

  • GapMinder World – manipulate moving bubble graphs, select x and y axis from a variety of data sets

Text-based tools

  •  NGram Viewer – online research tool that allows you to quickly analyze the frequency of names, words and phrases -and when they appeared in the Google digitized books. For more advanced searches using NGram Viewer click here.
  • Google Trends – see how often specific keywords, subjects and phrases have been queried over a specific period of time.
  • WordSift was created to help teachers manage the demands of vocabulary and academic language in their text materials.
  • Chronicling America – search America’s historic newspaper pages from 1789-1963

Map-based tools

Social justice projects (example American racial history)

Assignment 9

Sample posts from 2018

Choose one or more of these digital tools (or use a favorite of yours) and blog about how you would use it in an activity, lesson or unit. Be sure you focus on an idea that allows your students to be using the tool. Be sure to link to the tool and include a screen shot. If the digital tool allows results to be embedded in the blog. Reminder on how to use HTML Snippets.

Class 10: Teaching Social Studies with Data

Teaching Social Studies with Data








Quite often edtech tools are used by the teacher rather than the students and don’t do much more than make things prettier.
Think: Teacher at Smartboard as replacement for the overhead.

New digital technologies allows us to “see” information in new ways.
Think: Students analyzing a text using Wordle

History and other humanities that tended to be strictly narrative are leveraging  data collection and display tools to spawn a new digital / data approach to teaching history and social science.
See Digital Humanities Projects at Stanford

Many apps and websites can be a great tool to introduce the research method – form a hypothesis, gather and analyze data, revise hypothesis (as needed), draw conclusions, assess research methods. Working in teams students can easily pose research questions, run the data, revise and assess their research strategy. Students can quickly make and test predictions. They can then present and defend their conclusions to other classroom groups. All skills called for by the new Common Core standards.

In today’s class we will explore a sampling of free online data visualization tools that can be used in the classroom. Students will be asked to incorporate one of these tools into a lesson design.

GapMinder World: manipulate moving bubble graphs, select x and y axis from a variety of data sets

Worldometers is run by an international team of developers, researchers, and volunteers with the goal of making world statistics available in a thought-provoking and time relevant format to a wide audience around the world.

 NGram Viewer: online research tool that allows you to quickly analyze the frequency of names, words and phrases -and when they appeared in the Google digitized books. Ideas for classroom use Books Ngram Viewer.  For more advanced searches using NGram Viewer click here.

Chronicling America has digitized newspapers from across America from 1836-1922. You can search word frequency here.   Search Chronicling America and visualize the results across space and time at USNewsMap project.

Google Trends is an online search tool that allows the user to see how often specific keywords, subjects and phrases have been queried over a specific period of time.

Bookworm: a collection of simple and powerful way to visualize trends in repositories of digitized texts. Here’s a favorite: Movies: dialogues of movie and TV shows.

Timelapse: is a global, zoomable video that lets you see how the Earth has changed over the past 32 years.

Metrocosm is my collection of maps and other data visualization projects — trying to make sense of the world through numbers. Here’s All the World’s Immigration Visualized in 1 Map.

There are many individual project that have visualize a specific data set for example  Map of white supremacy mob violence

Assignment 1

Choose one or more of these digital tools (or use a favorite of yours) and blog about how you would use it in an activity, lesson or unit. A few things to keep in mind:

  1. Be sure you design a lesson that allows your students to be the ones using the tool. ( it’s not just for display, they get to use it for analysis)
  2. Be sure to include an embed of the tool (if possible) or at least a screen shot with link back to the tool.
  3. Blog post due: 11/6.

Assignment 2

Students will develop and deliver a 30 min lesson in class.

11/13  – James, Nancy, Paxton
11/20 – Taran, Kelly, David
The lesson should a historical thinking skills lesson. Specific content of lesson is up to you. If you can get the timing right, we can offer you feedback before you use it with your students.
  • This lesson should be delivered as if we were your class.
  • Your peers will serve as participant observers noting lesson content, nature of the student task, lesson delivery and student workflow.
  • You should post your lesson on our site (due when you deliver to class).
  • Feel free to design a flipped lesson in advance and let the class know of your plans and required viewing.
  • If you have a significant amount of reading required, send it to us in advance.
  • After your delivery of the lesson go back and edit your post with synopsis of what you learned from our class feedback.

Image credits:
Header: AdobeSpark public domain
Insert: Teaching with a SMART Board / Flickr








Class 10: Digital Literacy








Family_watching_television_1958

This week we have another split class. One component will be our Lesson Study II where students will have 5 mins to pitch a lesson idea for peer feedback. Unlike our first lesson study, no written write up is required. Visual aides are optional.

Then we will turn our attention to emerging ideas of digital literacy. We will revisit an earlier reading Snapshot of a Modern Learner and it’s implication for the classroom. I will offer a brief lecture detailing aspects of  the “new digital literacy.”

  • Find, decode and critically evaluate information.
  • Curate, store and responsibly share it.
  • Effectively filter information flow and stay focussed.

Students will have an opportunity to view GapMinder World – a website that exemplifies redefined learning in the digital era. Students will get to use two additional transformative web-based research tools – NGram Viewer and NY Times Chronicle – to develop and test hypotheses.

Books Ngram Viewer and NY Times Chronicle have many interesting applications in the classroom. For example, they can both be used to introduce the research method – form a hypothesis, gather and analyze data, revise hypothesis (as needed), draw conclusions, assess research methods. Working in teams students can easily pose research questions, run the data, revise and assess their research strategy. Students can quickly make and test predictions. They can then present and defend their conclusions to other classroom groups. All skills called for by the new Common Core standards. Ideas for classroom use Books Ngram Viewer and NY Times Chronicle. For more advanced searches using NGram Viewer click here.

Assignment:
Students will continue work on the their document-based lesson design. Students will begin to layout their document-based lesson using a Google Site. With one webpage to correspond to each page of the lesson.

This step has two goals – (1) to further clarify your lesson (2) to get some experience taking content from one medium – Google Slides to another  – Google sites. It will require you to have your images files for importing into Google site (same workflow as importing into iBooks Author)

For more information on using Google Site see our edMethods Toolkit

Due 11/7

  1. Google site start page that describes:
    Intro to the lesson –  Grade, course, etc and a broad description of “what are the kids going to do?” Essential question. One document as  illustration.
  2. Blog post on edMethods You should then take that content from the start page and use it as the basis of a blog post on our edMethods blog that shares the intent of your lesson. Please include a sample document (image) and a link from edMethods post to your Google site start page.

Due by 11/14

Finish your Google site version of document-based lesson with multiple pages, each page should be designed as one page of your final book with:

  • At least one suitable document (include links and info on source institution, collection number, creator, date).
  • Scaffolding questions for each document that guide students through historical thinking skills being taught.
  • Instructions for students / or teacher on using the lesson

Image Credit: Family watching television. Evert F. Baumgardner, ca. 1958 National Archives and Records Administration








Digitizing History








Prompt: Write a blog post in response to our class on digital history.

The idea of using digital tools such as Twitter, NY Times Chronicle, or GapMinder have just as many pros as they do cons. From experiencing using tools such as Twitter in the classroom I believe it can be a great leverage for teachers who are engaging with a very technology literate generation. During a recent ED class, my peers and I used Twitter as a device to hold discussions not only with each other, but with other Social Studies teachers across the nation. Due to the limited character count I was forced to paraphrase my thoughts,  which I think is a fun and novel way to get students to really grapple with understanding their own ideas, and how they can convey it in a concise explanation. After experiencing a lesson such as this myself, i witnessed just how focused students could be if guided to use this tool correctly. The cons of using Twitter in a high school or even middle school, in comparison to a college class, is the fact it is a social media, and can easily distract students.

Other tools such as NY Times Chronicle or NGram though are fascinating. Although there is still that fear that students will get distracted and use these tools for whimisical pleasure, it allows students to have a visual and chronological  understanding of a word of phrase, and give rise to new curiosity as why it is displayed on the graphs as so. How I would use these digital tools in my own class I  for a lesson I am still not sure of, but I’m sure something will come to mind later in the future.