Thursday, October 2, 2014

OESSTA Newsletter

Check out the newsletter for Ontario Elementary Social Studies Teachers' Association (OESSTA). The following was compiled by Byron Stevenson:

OESSTA News #8

Hello teachers , I have included a variety of materials that support the teaching of Social Studies History and Geography focusing on the 2013 Revised Curriculum. There are a variety of professional learning opportunities available to you that will enhance your practice.

We have also completed most of our projects related to the roll out. They are posted on our temporarily on our blog Do visit and see what we have created. In addition our new website will be ready shortly. The main feature of the website will be a forum to promote sharing and collaboration. Please share with your colleagues.

Professional Learning Opportunities
Please promote the conference within your district school board.

A) Ontario Elementary Social Studies Teachers Association Conference - OESSTA in conjunction with OAGEE will hold a conference at Ryerson University on October 17 & 18, 2014.

The conference will highlight teaching/learning approaches and resources related to the 2013 Revised SSHG curricuum document.

Registration has just opened:
Select the OESSTA section for registration. There are session relating to : inquiry, spatial technologies, using primary sources, teaching an African Canadian perspective , leading teachers with the revised curriculum, and working with the concepts of thinking.

B) Connecting with your colleagues across the province using twitter!

Teachers and administrators are invited to participate in the Ontario Elementary Social Studies Teachers Association (OESSTA) social media network to explore the New Revised SSHG on twitter @oessta1 using the hashtag #ontsshg for discussion. There will be a twitter chat on Thursday nights at 9:00-10:00 PM to discuss, share ideas and strategies. Hope you will follow!

Upcoming chats:  October 9/14 - Sharing effective practices for SSHG

(PLEASE CONSIDER facilitating (or co-facilitating) a #ontsshg Twitter chat on Thursday at 9pm - DM your email address to @Robitaille2011 - thank you)

C) Webinar - Heritage Minutes (register today) - Heritage Minutes, also known officially as Historica Minutes: History by the Minute, is a series of sixty-second short films, each illustrating an important moment in Canadian history.

Presented by Historica Canada in conjunction with The Ontario Elementary Social Studies Teachers Association (OESSTA) - October 8, 2014 3:45-4:30 - OPEN TO ALL

D) OTF Connects… small, frequent doses of valuable PD designed to fit your needs and your schedule

Registration opens -  October 7, 2014

The Ontario Teachers’ Federation cares about supporting your learning and is pleased to continue to offer OTF Connects. The OTF Connects program is online, ongoing support developed by teachers for teachers. A wide variety of session topics are available in the 2014-2015 calendar, including 21st Century Learning, Critical Thinking, Environmental Education, Financial Literacy and Violence Prevention.


1) What is Inquiry-Based Learning? (read this article about two OESSTA members)
“Inquiry-based teaching is an approach to instruction that begins with exploring curriculum content and providing a framework for the students to ask their own questions which builds interest and curiosity,” says Louise Robitaille, an elementary teacher in Midland.
Visit the inquiry website for more ideas at

2) The Thinking Teacher
The Thinking Teacher highlights ideas, strategies and resources for teachers and educational leaders who are working to support critical thinking in K-12 classrooms.

History? HERstory! Daily life of a pioneer woman - October is Women’s History Month. Invite students to determine what daily life was like for pioneer women at the turn of the 20thcentury using photographs, interviews and even a letter-to-the-editor. The set of History Docs,Daily life for pioneers 1890-1914, contains source documents, an image viewer, student tasks and teacher notes.

Targeted grades: Middle

View the History Doc

Find out more about the History Docs collection.

See more resources in The Thinking Teacher archives.