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Social Studies Teacher Interview Questions and Answers
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Describe one of the most successful lessons you have taught in a class. Explain why it worked so well.
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About how the government operates it worked so well because it was hands on.
In my first day at pv we did an actual easter egg hunt to explain how imperialism worked and to transition to how america became a world power in the early 1900s. The students didn't know who I was, what to expect, etc and my goal was to make them feel comfortable in class, have fun, while also doing an activity that would stick with them throughout the unit as we would be using it often. I allowed the students, just like an imperialist country, to work either individually or as groups to obtain as many easter eggs as possible before the scramble began. At the conclusion of the activity we tallied the scores and announced winners, we then discussed how the easter hunt is similar to imperialism which is when a stronger nation takes over a weaker nation for political, economic, or military reasons. All throughout the unit students fully understood how it related to imperialism and how america became a world power through imperializing weaker nations. It stuck with them even after doing two more units as well.
Senator project. Students were eager to take ownership of the activity.
A team teaching lesson in which we performed mock supreme court hearings. Students were broken into groups in order to argue one of 2 sides of an issue or be on the supreme court. Students then presented arguments with the justices asking questions about the arguments. I felt it was so successful because the lesson was different from many classroom activities and had great participation but it was also able to be differentiated with 2 teachers team teaching the lesson and providing multiple ways for students to show their understanding of the content.
One of the most successful lessons I taught was during my time at Westchester Middle School during my student teaching assignment. We were covering the Illinois State Constitution, and we were specifically talking about the Executive Branch. I wanted to compose a lesson that would make understanding and memorizing these officers and their powers creative, fun, and easily memorizable. Prior to composing the unit I had asked my class about what they were interested in outside of school, many of which, boys and girls stated that they were interested in super hero movies and comics. I used this to create a lesson that required groups of 4 to 5 students, modified of course for skill-sets, social dynamics, and emotional needs to create a superhero that demonstrated the powers of that particular assigned position. An example was the Governator, he/she could sign or veto bills with her lightning rod pen! The kids loved it, and they stated that making those posters made remembering the Executive Branch on the test very simple.
Holocaust lesson--video testimonials from Holocaust Museum--grabs students attention--heart wrenching to watch and students always want to learn more.
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