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TF Update 9/18/2016
Thinking Teachers Teaching Thinkers®

For Your Classroom

No Social Studies topic left behind! This Weekly Update offers many practical and engaging ways to easily incorporate Social Studies into your daily lessons, plus a lot of other relevant information. This article, from Buzzle, shares the Importance of Teaching Social Studies. The article quotes the United States National Council for the Social Studies as defining Social Studies as the “integrated study of social science and humanities to promote civic competence.” Social Studies can include various humanities, history, geography, world cultures, government, psychology, and SO much more.

Did you know that we are now celebrating National Hispanic Heritage Month? We have some fabulous resources to explore for your classroom. A good place to begin is Celebrate Hispanic Heritage. This site is ideal for elementary and middle school. Find a plethora of ready to go activities. Learn about music from around the world at American Sabor: Latinos in U.S. Popular Music or Daria - World Music for Children.

Professional Development

Join our Fall Book Study
Registration continues for our Fall book study on The Relevant Educator by Tom Whitby and Stephen Anderson. The study will run from mid-September through mid-November. All participants completing the required assignments will be given 15 points (CEU credits). Read about the details here. To participate in this free book study you must be a TeachersFirst member (see how to register for FREE membership). Click here to register to participate in the Fall Book study.


Back This Week - OK2Ask
Fall registration is now open for OK2Ask, our free virtual workshops. Register now to attend one of our helpful web workshops. Read our FAQ for general information about certificates, etc. Please be sure to read the detailed descriptions and suggested technology comfort levels BEFORE you register.

Here is what is coming up:

Tuesday, September 20, 7:00 - 8:30pm Eastern - Fall Book Study Opening Session (ONLY OPEN TO BOOK STUDY PARTICIPANTS)

Tuesday, September 27, 7:00 - 8:30pm Eastern - So Simple, So Slick, So Sway

Tuesday October 4, 7:00 - 8:30pm Eastern - My Students Need That! Chrome Features and Extensions for Accessibility.


TeachersFirst Exclusives

Geography Matters
Whether your class is joining the Globetracker Mission or not, Geography Matters! TeachersFirst has many resources to help you reach and teach your students about geography. Start with our Geography Awareness list of curated resources. These feature some of our BEST geography resources. We also have a CurriConnects booklist related to Geographic Wonders. There are books for every age from preschool to high school. This is a fabulous way to integrate geography into your language arts lessons. If you are feeling “tech” adventurous, check out our mapping tools from the edge. Find tools to build maps, add maps to timelines, create geography games, and more.


What is Your Focus?
What do you focus on in your classroom: helping with students’ weaknesses, empowering students’ strength, or a balance of both? This week’s Teacher Poll asks: What do you focus on more in your classroom? Place your vote on the teacher poll on the TeachersFirst home page.

TeachersFirst Features

Find many resources about National Hispanic Heritage Month and Geography in this week’s Featured Sites:

  • Where in the World?
  • Geopedia
  • National Geographic Kids
  • Salsa
  • Celebrate Hispanic Heritage
  • Wordie
  • And more

IMPORTANT NOTE: If you are reading this October 2nd, or later, the link above will take you to the Featured Sites for the current week. Find the archived September 18th Features here, and don’t miss our many other recent additions from the link at the bottom of the Featured Sites page.


As you navigate the many maps of geography, let TeachersFirst be your compass to learning adventures!

Melissa Henning
Educational Content Manager
TeachersFirst/Source For Learning