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CED 350: Teaching Social Studies

Today, we're going to talk about finding good books to teach social studies concepts. We'll going to break this down into three steps:

  1. Identifying books of interest
  2. Searching the library catalog to locate a book (or two) that the library owns 
  3. Going to the shelves to physically locate the book(s)

After that, Professor Maynard would like you to read the books you found and discuss how you might use them in your lessons. 

1. Identifying books of interest

The National Council for the Social Studies puts out a list every year of notable books for children and young adults. Each list will tell you what age range the book is appropriate for, and what NCSS thematic strands it covers. For example, here's an example from this year's list: 

The P after the price means it's recommended for primary school age (which they indicate includes grades K-2) and it covers strands 1 (culture), 2 (time, continuinity, and change), and 8 (science, technology, and society). 

2. Searching the library catalog

Once you've found a few titles, you can search for them here. We don't have every book on these lists, so don't get disheartened if it takes you a few tries to find something we have. 

3. Going to the shelves

The book you find will be in one of two places:

  1. Our picture book collection
  2. The rest of our juvenile collection 

The call number will tell you which collection it is in. The screenshot below shows an example of each: 

Our picture books aren't exactly in alphabetical order, but it's close. Most of them begin with the same call number, so you only need part of the call number - the first letter after PZ7 (or PZ8, etc.), and the first number. In the example pictured above, that's and 1. So you'd look for the books that have W/1 on their spine. Here's a photo of the book and its spine label: 

For books in the juvenile collection, you will need the whole call number.

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