The Power of Perspectives:

Teaching with Primary Sources to Engage English Learners in Democratic Discussions in Social Studies

What Will Be Accomplished in This Program?

Upon completion of the program, participating teachers will be prepared to:

    • Articulate the benefit of using primary sources to further develop students’ critical historical thinking skills
    • Navigate gov/teachers to locate, select, analyze, and use primary sources in your unit/lesson plans
    • Design inquiry-based instruction using primary sources and the NCSS C3 Framework that includes appropriate supports to make content accessible to ELs
    • Engage ELs in democratic discussions through authoring essential questions based on Teaching Tolerance’s Social Justice Standards
    • Engage students in the Claims-Evidence-Reasoning framework to articulate evidence-based claims to support a particular perspective
    • Support ELs in authoring argumentative writing assessments

A team of experts will assist teachers in assessing the following student outcomes:

  • Demonstrate growth in ability to engage in the academic language of social studies
  • Demonstrate growth in English proficiency in all four domains (reading, listening, speaking, and writing)
  • Synthesize ideas, perspectives, and arguments based on evidence identified in primary sources
  • Use the C-E-R framework for locating, interrogating, and organizing evidence and making evidence-based claims
  • Engage in democratic and deliberative discussions within a social justice framework by demonstrating ways in which content is concerned with self, ethics, others, and the global world (the 4 unifying motifs in the NCSS framework for developing participatory citizens)

what does liberty look like?What Is Required to Complete the Program?

This project is grant-funded and has both evaluation and research components to determine the effectiveness of the project (evaluation) and to inform the ongoing development of high-quality professional development for teachers of ELs (research).

  • Complete two online surveys
  • Attend all workshops (see schedule below)
  • Design and implement 4 instructional units using content you already teach over the 18-month program (with support from an instructional coach)
  • Submit a total of 8 written reflections (using a provided template) over the course of the 18-month program OR engage in a combination of written reflections and informal interviews with the project researcher
  • Audio-record a total of 3 student discussions in your classroom
  • Submit student writing samples of argumentative assessments from the 4 units taught


The Power of Perspectives: Teaching with Primary Sources to
Engage English Learners in Democratic Discussions in Social Studies

Professional Development Schedule

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2018-2019 Academic Year
January 17, 2019
2:00 – 3:00 p.m.
Welcome and Overview Webinar
January 24 & 25, 2019
9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Teaching with Primary Sources PaTTAN site
February 7, 2019
2:00 – 3:00 p.m.
Teaching Social Justice Standards Through Essential Questioning Webinar
February 27, 2019
9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Engaging ELs in Inquiry-Based SS Instruction PaTTAN site
March 12, 2019
2:00 – 3:00 p.m.
Making Instruction and Assessment Accessible to ELs Webinar
March 20, 2019
9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Highly Effective Writing for English Learners PaTTAN site
2019-2020 Academic Year
Specific dates are TBD with participants
August 2019
(60 minutes)
Welcome back webinar – preparing for this school year Webinar
November 2019
9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
In-Person Workshop (one day) Regional PaTTAN sites
March – April 2020 Coaching session(s) as requested Online or classrooms
June 2020 Wrap-up Webinar Webinar


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speech balloon colonial williamsburg foundationHow Do I Construct A Team?

  • A team should have a minimum of 3 or a maximum of 6 members who teach in the same grade level and have ELs in their classrooms. At least one member of your team must teach Social Studies.
  • Other team members can include an ESL Specialist, English Language Arts/Reading teacher, Reading Specialist, and/or additional Social Studies teachers
  • All members of the team must be employed by the same school district but do NOT need to be assigned to the same school building
  • Each team is asked to include the contact information of the administrator who supports the team’s participation

Ready to Apply?

Click here to complete the online application.You will receive a confirmation that your application has been received. This is a competitive application process with limited openings. A member of the selection team may contact you if additional information or clarification of your application is needed. Applicants will be notified regarding the status of their application by December 21, 2018.

Please direct program inquiries to Andrea Kolb, ELD Managing Coordinator, at or (717) 763-1661 ext. 198.