Friday, December 2, 2011

Mr. Underground Goes to DC

Recently we got a call from some folks up in DC indicating they were interested in what we here at the Underground had to say.  Actually it was just an E-mail, and it was not a request to hear what teachers think about education it was only a confirmation that we were registered for the National Coouncil for the Social Studies(NCSS) Conference in Washington, DC.

So we packed our bags(a bag each actually) and headed north.   TU along with a handful of other teachers in our division were going national.  I mean we went past National, now Reagan National on our way here.  We also passed the Occupy DC site, the Washington Monument and our Hotel twice before we stopped.

Diane Ravitch.  Honorary TU Member.
Harlem Children's Zone Founder Geoffrey Canada
The conference is loaded with great topics and boasts an impressive list of speakers.  We anticipate the highlight of those being the speech by Diane Ravitch.  Also looking forward to hearing from Philip Zimbardo, Judy Woodruff, Geoffrey Canada, and Kareem Abdul Jabaar.  After registering, we learned Secretary of Education Arne Duncan would also be giving a speech.    (When I heard that I wanted to register under the name "R. Neese Tinks" but thought better of it.)  It wouldn't have mattered in the end as Mr. Duncan ducked us, indicating he had been called to the White House.  His appearance would be limited to the ticketed "President's Breakfast" where the Teacher of the Year Awards were given out. Oh well.  Mr. Tinks will not be in attendance and I will. 
Secretary of Education Arne Duncan

That said we are pretty sure our attendance is an elaborate ruse to get us out of our building.  When we return we fully expect to to find all of our stuff gone from our classroom and a new teacher there who has replaced us.

We are hoping to learn a lot and perhaps leave with some ideas and tools to better serve our students.   Look for an update that covers our first full day in DC  soon.  We'll leave you with this NCSS link to some useful social studies classroom resources keep you busy.

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