Tag Archives: current events

Creating a 7th Grade Current Events GoogleSite in Social Studies with @CatherinGeorges

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Catherine Georges (@CatherinGeorges) is the 7th grade Social Studies teacher at The School at Columbia University. I have really enjoy collaborating with her over the years. Recently, she and I looked at a variety of digital spaces to host a Current Events Site for her students to curate weekly articles for their classmates. Initially, I was looking forward to using Posterous but upon closer examination of their Terms of Service, I learned that users have to be over 13 years of age. This doesn’t work for our 7th graders. We considered Blogger next, but it is not currently in the Google Apps for Ed marketplace yet. I also considered Edublogs and other sites before Catherine and I just agreed to set up a GoogleSite: https://sites.google.com/a/theschool.columbia.edu/7th-current-events-2012-13/home

Each learning group (7A, 7B, and 7C) has a page with the Announcements template, and Catherine created a calendar which lists three children per learning group per week who are responsible for adding an article to their class page. Students need to include the following when posting a Local, National, or International story:

1. Link to the article

2. Summary of the article (3-5 sentences)

3. Supporting image (with citation)

4. Google Map (using a Google Gadget)

5. One good leading question for classmates to answer in the Comments section below each post

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8th graders at @The_School are required to watch CNN Student News for Homework:

I was making “the rounds” this morning, and popped in on Monica Amaro‘s 8th Grade Social Studies class just as they started watching CNN Student News together. Kids were required to summarize in their journals 3 key points from the 10-minute segment. Monica screens it every morning before school so that she can discuss the topics with her students whether or not they watch it together in class (which they do about once a week). She says she got the idea to incorporate CNN Student News from Catherine Georges who teaches 7th Grade Social Studies here at The School at Columbia University.
CNN Student News on Twitter: @CNNStudentNews

CNN Student News website: http://www.cnn.com/studentnews/

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Setting up the 8th Grade Current Events group on our #Elgg social network

I just sat with the 8th grade science teacher and set up a group for her science students on our Elgg social network. Each student is responsible for hosting one weekly discussion about something newsworthy. They have to locate an article online, link to the article (by posting the URL), summarize the text, and post a series of follow-up questions. Their classmates then comment on the blog post as part of their classwork/homework grade.

Below are some sites I post to help the 8th graders looking for articles. Please let me know if you can suggest other web journals:

http://www.sciencenewsforkids.org/

http://www.nytimes.com/pages/science/

http://www.sciencenews.org/view/interest/id/3/topic/Science_News_For_Kids

http://www.eurekalert.org/kidsnews/

http://news.google.com/?q=science%20news

http://livescience.com/

Here is a sample post from a student last year:

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