Unit 1: What is the purpose of disciplinary literacy?

Revision as of 14:45, 15 August 2019 by Maintenance script (talk | contribs) (script converts hard links to wiki links)
(diff) ← Older revision | Latest revision (diff) | Newer revision → (diff)

Portfolio Page

Incorporating Literacy into Social Studies

Reading thinking.jpg

For this unit of the course, you will be exploring the CCSS, instructional shifts, and research around disciplinary literacy. Keep in mind, this course is focused on the social studies content area. Therefore, we will be exploring the CCSS for history and social studies. The following are your learning targets for this unit. Use them to guide your thinking and learning.

•1. I can explain the purpose of disciplinary literacy.

•2. I can determine the importance of discinplinary literacy in the SS classroom.

•3. I can explain how to use disciplinary literacy to meet the CCSS and deepen student thinking.

•4. I can determine what it means to teach students to "think like historians."

Lesson One: Pre-Assessment

Answer the following in a discussion post on the top of this page. This will help me understand you as a learner, as well as help us understand each other.

1. What do you know already about disciplinary literacy?

2. How have you incorporated literacy into your SS class planning?

3. What new ideas do you hope to discover about building student’s historical thinking and literacy skills?

4. What are your overall goals as a social studies teacher?

Lesson Two: Exploring the CCSS and Instructional Shifts

Examine both links below in order to explore the CCSS for History/Social Studies and writing, as well as the instructional shifts. Keep track of anything specific you notice about each and anything you may wonder about each. Answer the following questions in another group discussion post.




1. What do you notice about the CCSS for History/Social Studies across the middle school grade levels?

2. How have you addressed these standards in your work so far. Give specific examples from your planning and instruction.

3. What do you notice about the instructional shifts? How do they connect to the CCSS for History/Social Studies?

Check in on your learning targets: Rate yourself on each learning target from 1-4. Provide explanations on why you feel this way. What are your next steps in order to achieve these learning targets? What other resources may you need in order to achieve these learning targets? You can do this in a personal reflection journal of your own.

Lesson Three: Research on Disciplinary Literacy & Teaching Students to "Think Like a Historian"

SIGN UP for an account on Edmodo. Use this code 3b7fd5 as the Group Code to signup. If you have an account, please just join our classes page titled "Disciplinary Literacy in Social Studies."

'Part One:' What does current research say about disciplinary literacy?

Read the following articles below. Use the following guiding questions while you are reading

-How can incorporating literacy into SS deepen student thinking?

-How does the information in these articles hold implications for your practice?

Gills, V. (2014). Disciplinary literacy. Journal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy, 57(8). 614-623.


MacPhee, D. A., & Whitecotton, E. J. (2011). Bringing the “social” back to social studies:Literacy strategies as tools for understanding history. Social Studies, 102 (6). 263-267.


Waring, S. M. & Robinson K. S. (2010) Developing critical and historical thinking skills in the middle grades social studies. Middle School Journal, 42(1). 22-28.


Merten, S. (2015). Reading and writing across content areas. Science Scope, 38(6). 12-18.



Part Two: How to Incorporate Literacy into SS: Students Thinking Like Historians*

1. Concept Map – “Thinking like a Historian”

-Create a concept map on the phrase "thinking like a historian." What does it mean to think like a historian? How can we help students to think like historians?

2. Exploring SHEG http://sheg.stanford.edu/

-Explore at least 3 resources from the SHEG website: videos about the thinking like a historian approach, sample lesson plans that incorporate reading like a historian, sample assessments

  • Discussion Forum on Edmodo-- How do the approaches from SHEG meet the CCSS and instructional shifts? How can these approaches deepen student understanding of historical issues, as well as increase their literacy performance? How are these approaches and assessments different from “traditional social studies?” What methods from SHEG do you plan on incorporating into your lessons for this course and why?

Self Assessment

Rate yourself 1-4 and determine your next steps to improve your knowledge on the purpose of disciplinary literacy

*Complete on a Google Doc and share