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TCI Unveils New Version of Its Online Social Studies Curriculum

Posted Aug 5, 2011
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TCI has unveiled a new version of its online social studies curriculum - fully optimized for teaching online - that allows teachers to immerse their students in active social studies using the broad spectrum of technology available in today's classrooms.

TCI's new online social studies curriculum combines best-teaching practices with great content, meaningful application of technology and interactive learning, according to the announcement. The program helps teachers engage students in learning when teaching with an interactive whiteboard or in a one-computer classroom. The lessons use a variety of activities that target different learning styles to ensure that all students grasp difficult concepts. In addition, the program provides teachers with ideas for differentiating lessons for specific student populations such as English language learners and advanced learners.

TCI's instructional activities immerse students in social studies. For example, a popular instructional strategy in TCI's curriculum is Visual Discovery. Teachers use a whiteboard or other projector to share a large, rich image of a historical event or person with students. Students answer a series of questions that spiral in difficulty to help them analyze the image. Teachers might spend 20 minutes on an image, asking increasingly more complex questions. Then, students are assigned a person or object in the image and come to the screen to act out what the person might be thinking or doing. Other engaging, interactive learning activities include the American Revolution tug-of-war, the "dot game" that recreates Cold War hysteria and a search of a sunken ship to learn about European explorers.

With the new version of the TCI curriculum, teachers can integrate their own expertise and resources into their presentations by adding images to slides or inserting their own slides. They can save as many versions of each lesson as they like to the "cloud," allowing them to access it anywhere, anytime. And navigation in the new program is reorganized to make it more intuitive for teachers.

In addition, TCI has made preparing to teach with the program faster and easier for teachers. Lesson support materials are available with the click of a link on the web, and lesson overview videos give teachers a snapshot of what students will be learning. Embedded professional development includes video tutorials throughout the program, offering teachers on-the-fly introduction to the new features.TCI

TCI's new social studies curriculum's online Student Text features text-to-audio, dynamic highlighting and engaging graphics. Student progress is monitored by reading comprehension quizzes that are automatically scored and posted to the teacher's subscription. The TCI Student Text and handouts are now available in Spanish, and the text-to-audio feature can be read to the students in Spanish. The program's dynamic and easy-to-use social media tools allow students to travel beyond the walls of the classroom and invite TCI teachers to communicate with their colleagues across the nation to share ideas, lesson plans and tips.

Schools and districts with current TCI subscriptions will be automatically upgraded to the new version for the life of their subscription. 

Source: TCI,

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