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Friday, July 8 • 9:45am - 10:45am
The Power of Patterns and Themes in ELA and Social Studies Classrooms

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Social Studies and ELA are ripe for collaborative opportunities but so often we silo these disciplines into separate spheres in both elementary and secondary settings. This session will engage teachers in planning instruction through the lens of literary themes, historical patterns, Utah’s Portrait of a Graduate competencies, and Utah core standards. We will collaboratively work to make connections between historical patterns such as power or perspective and literary themes like identity or survival. We will then connect these patterns and themes to Utah’s Portrait of a Graduate competencies like hard work and resilience. This approach helps students ask deeper questions, make meaningful connections to themselves and the world, and also build their literacy and historical critical thinking skills. Participants will leave with the skills to build and use rich text sets – including novels, picture books, primary sources, and nonfiction – that are connected to these themes and develop student skills.

Presenters
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JoAnna Sorensen

PreK-6 Social Studies Specialist, Utah State Board of Education
JoAnna Sorensen is the PreK-6 Social Studies Specialist at the Utah State Board of Education, fresh out of 21 years as a classroom teacher in Utah in four different districts: Granite, Logan, Cache, and Davis. She taught sixth grade for all of those years - some at the elementary... Read More →
avatar for Naomi Watkins

Naomi Watkins

Secondary English Language Arts Specialist, Utah State Board of Education
Naomi Watkins is the Secondary English Language Arts Specialist at the Utah State Board of Education.
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Robert Austin

K-12 Humanities Coordinator and K-12 Social Studies Specialist, Utah State Board of Education
Robert Austin is the Humanities Team Coordinator and K-12 Social Studies Specialist at the USBE. A former middle school teacher and secondary literacy coach, Robert coordinates the Utah Teacher of the Year program and civics education efforts as well as supporting K-12 social studies... Read More →


Friday July 8, 2022 9:45am - 10:45am MDT
ED 111 - Emma Eccles Jones Education Building, Room 111 Southern Utah University, 351 W University Blvd., Cedar City Utah