Inspired Teaching staff and 2014 BLISS Teacher Leaders present at Middle States Council of the Social Studies annual conference

February 24, 2015

(Photo: Adam Evans)

On February 20 and 21, Inspired Teaching’s Cosby Hunt and Matt Fiteny and two 2014 BLISS Teacher Leaders, Stephanie Bunton (Columbia Heights Educational Campus) and Adam Evans (Ballou Senior High School), presented at the Middle States Council of the Social Studies (MSCSS) annual conference in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. MSCSS brings together teachers, school and district administrators, universities, and nonprofit leaders from New Jersey, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Delaware, New York, and DC with the goal of “Cultivating a 21st Century Civil Society.”

Adam and Stephanie, social studies teachers in DC Public Schools (DCPS), presented a session titled “Building Literacy in the Social Studies: How District of Columbia social studies teachers have led the transition to C3 in an urban school district.” They introduced participants to the BLISS: Building Literacy in the Social Studies program and led a group of teachers, nonprofit leaders, and district administrators in interactive, inquiry-based activities that demonstrated the critically important role of teacher voice in leadership.

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(L to R): 2014 BLISS Teacher Leaders and DCPS social studies teachers Adam Evans and Stephanie Bunton (Photo: Matt Fiteny/Inspired Teaching)

Cosby and Matt presented a session titled “Building Literacy in the Social Studies: How District of Columbia Public Schools and Center for Inspired Teaching have partnered to innovate and advance social studies instruction in an urban district.” The session engaged teachers and administrators in activities and structured discussion of strategies for developing enduring partnerships.

Both sessions highlighted the innovative BLISS:Building Literacy in the Social Studies partnership through which Inspired Teaching and DCPS are improving social studies instruction for students in DC. BLISS trains teachers in inquiry-based instruction, creates College, Career, and Civic Life (C3) aligned curricula, and provides the opportunity for students to experience 21st century social studies instruction. BLISS also creates a cohort of Teacher Leaders who regularly meet and develop literacy-based curriculum, building their capacity to lead a Professional Learning Community in their sphere of influence.

Read more about the conference and the movement to build a better school experience for students in a piece written by 2014 BLISS Teacher Leader Adam Evans.

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