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1BIG HISTORY PROJECT / INTRODUCTION is designed to provide the raw materials any teacher would need to describe the course to administrators, parents,

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Presentation on theme: "1BIG HISTORY PROJECT / INTRODUCTION is designed to provide the raw materials any teacher would need to describe the course to administrators, parents,"— Presentation transcript:

1 1BIG HISTORY PROJECT / INTRODUCTION is designed to provide the raw materials any teacher would need to describe the course to administrators, parents, or other teachers should be customized and tailored to the audience as needed by the presenter Slide 8 should be updated by the presenter to reflect how the course would function in a specific environment Need help or advice? DELETE THIS SLIDE INSTRUCTIONS This Presentation…

2 The Big History Project Introduction

3 3BIG HISTORY PROJECT / INTRODUCTION WHAT IS BIG HISTORY? A social studies course covering 13.8 billion years of shared history. Big History weaves evidence and insights from many disciplines across 13.8 billion years into a single, cohesive, science-based origin story. The concept arose from a desire to go beyond specialized and self-contained fields of study to grasp history as a whole. Big History explores how we are connected to everything around us and where we may be heading. It provides a foundation for thinking about the future and the changes that are reshaping our world.

4 4BIG HISTORY PROJECT / INTRODUCTION WHAT IS THE BIG HISTORY PROJECT? A collaborative effort to create a Big History course for teachers everywhere. Complete, free curriculum including assessments, lessons, and hundreds of diverse content items. A website that provides easy access to course materials for educators and students. Training and professional development opportunities. Active community of “Big Historians” to keep the course fresh, impactful, and connected. Advocacy organization to support schools and districts seeking to deploy the course.

5 5BIG HISTORY PROJECT / INTRODUCTION WHO IS BEHIND THE BIG HISTORY PROJECT? Experts / Guest Lecturers Broad range of experts on cutting edge of their fields – Walter Alvarez, Janna Levin, Skip Gates, John Green, and many more share their perspectives throughout the course University of Michigan Research partner: Manages student data (always anonymous!) and drives course strategy Teachers and Schools The engine behind BHP: The course is built in conjunction with a core set of pilot schools, both public and independent David Christian and Bill Gates David Christian was one of the pioneers of Big History, and his college-level course inspired Bill Gates to explore a collaboration designed to bring Big History to high school students everywhere

6 6BIG HISTORY PROJECT / INTRODUCTION OUR GOAL Big History challenges students to think critically and broadly. We try to ignite a passion for inquiry and exploration through the development of essential skills and comprehension of our core concepts. ESSENTIAL SKILLS CORE CONCEPTS INTEGRATING MULTIPLE DISCIPLINES By integrating a variety of perspectives into our thinking, we see human history in new, interconnected ways. MAKING AND TESTING CLAIMS Today, millions of news outlets are only a click away. Big History uses a four-step framework for critical thinking that teaches students to evaluate claims and sources. THINKING ACROSS SCALE Big History looks beyond human history, exploring connections among events billions of years ago and our lives today. THRESHOLDS In Big History, we think about moments such as when stars first lit up, the Earth formed, and early humans learned to farm. We call these thresholds, and they are the milestones in our story. COLLECTIVE LEARNING Humans are the only species that can share information over generations. Through collective learning, we have accelerated change for humanity and the planet as a whole. ORIGIN STORIES People have always asked the big questions: Who are we? Where we come from? Big History is simply another attempt to answer these, with a perspective based on modern science.

7 7BIG HISTORY PROJECT / INTRODUCTION WHY OFFER BIG HISTORY? It’s a unique opportunity to engage students in a powerful learning experience that prepares them for broader, more integrative thinking. 1.Interdisciplinary: weaves together elements of traditional history, science, and 21 st -century skills 2.Common Core aligned: we engineered the course to deliver on CCSS ELA standards for 9 th /10 th grade 3.Innovative online model: makes distribution easy and engages multiple learning styles 4.Flexible: modular curriculum can be adapted to fit school-specific needs spanning PBL, STEM, ELA, World History, and more

8 8BIG HISTORY PROJECT / INTRODUCTION BIG HISTORY AT (SAMPLE SCHOOL) Target grade: 9 th /10 th elective Teachers: Approach: Pre-AP preparatory; designed to prepare students for AP US and World History by providing background and emphasizing core skill development.

9 9BIG HISTORY PROJECT / INTRODUCTION COURSE STRUCTURE Total course covers 13.8 billion years of history Split into two sections 1.Formations and early life: theories and evidence of origins of the Universe, planet formation, elements, and life. 2.Humans: the development of humans, civilizations, and key milestones in our progress. Formations and early life (35%)Humans (65%) Assessment 1Assessment 2Assessment 3 Post Course Survey Pre Course Survey





14 14BIG HISTORY PROJECT / INTRODUCTION BHP has teamed up with Newsela to ensure our reading content is accessible across ability levels. Each article offers anywhere from three to five Lexile levels, so you can provide the instruction each student needs. Lexile levels for course readings range from about 750 to We aim for each article to have a base level of 6 th or 7 th grade. SAMPLE CONTENT: LEVELED TEXT


16 16BIG HISTORY PROJECT / INTRODUCTION Each unit of the course includes an inquiry-based assessment activity that asks students to respond to a driving question by drawing evidence and insights from a selection of readings. These frame some of the big issues tackled in each unit. Students compose essays that are evaluated for the construction of their argument, use of evidence, under­standing of core ideas, and writing mechanics. ARTICLES: INVESTIGATIONS TEACHER VERSIONS STUDENT VERSIONS

17 17BIG HISTORY PROJECT / INTRODUCTION PBL is a method of instruction that has students take part in an extended inquiry about a complex question, problem, or challenge. The Big History Project includes three PBL activities. Each is written to cover two weeks of instructional time. Students work in groups to research their questions, compose a written response, and share their results with their class and the community. ARTICLES: PROJECT BASED LEARNING TEACHER VERSIONS STUDENT VERSIONS

18 18BIG HISTORY PROJECT / INTRODUCTION A variety of debates are scattered throughout the course. These provide students an opportunity to research a topic, prepare a statement, craft arguments, and dialog with one another. Each debate includes a prep worksheet, a debate format guide to help with structure and rubric for self and peer evaluation. ARTICLES: DEBATES TEACHER VERSIONS STUDENT VERSIONS

19 19BIG HISTORY PROJECT / INTRODUCTION Big History encourages students to develop a thoughtful, consistent and rigorous approach to engaging with and questioning new ideas and information. Using a four-step framework for critical thinking, Big History teaches students to examine their intuition, and evaluate the authority, evidence, and logic of claims and sources. A variety of activities throughout the course provide the opportunity for students to apply these techniques in their thinking, writing, and academic discourse. ARTICLES: CLAIM TESTING

20 20BIG HISTORY PROJECT / INTRODUCTION This page is the front door to the school course, and is where you will land after logging into Bookmark it for future reference, and send students a link to ensure easy access. The timeline shows you the 10 units of the course, arranged sequentially. Big History is organized around key “thresholds” and these are called out at their respective points. WEBSITE: MAIN PAGE

21 21BIG HISTORY PROJECT / INTRODUCTION Each unit has its own page, which is divided into rows that represent lessons. The unit view provides the highlights of each lesson so you can quickly jump to different content elements, and access them individually. WEBSITE: UNIT VIEW

22 22BIG HISTORY PROJECT / INTRODUCTION A view of each lesson in its entirety is available, with videos, articles, and activities. Each is available to view on the site or as a download, and has inline guidance and teaching advice. Student and teacher versions are available. WEBSITE: LESSON VIEW

23 Click to Live community site When you start teaching Big History, you join a dynamic, global community of educators who are working toward the same goals. It’s a complex course and there is no reason for each teacher to reinvent the wheel. In the Big History Project Teacher Community, you’ll be able to share lesson plans, course structure ideas, and your suggestions for improving the course. Simply click the Community tab and request an invite. WEBSITE: TEACHER COMMUNITY

24 24BIG HISTORY PROJECT / INTRODUCTION OUR SCHOOL’S RESPONSIBILITIES Deliver a full Big History course Actively provide feedback to Big History Project team to improve the course Administer light assessment program to help validate course impact Be a sponsor and advocate for the program as needed in our region PILOT PROGRAM

25 25BIG HISTORY PROJECT / INTRODUCTION ASSESSMENT PROGRAM All assessments are “opt in” for students via simple consent form Three student perception surveys to gauge their reactions to the course Three lightweight (1,250-word) writing samples All data is made anonymous and managed under strict supervision of the University of Michigan, with extremely high levels of privacy protection. PILOT PROGRAM

26 26BIG HISTORY PROJECT / INTRODUCTION Student interest in the course is strong due to unique, innovative content, and compelling “big story.” Focus on healthy debate and “claim testing” improves student engagement while helping to hone critical thinking and presentation skills. Big History’s emphasis on interpretation of past events with an eye to implications for the future prepares students to meet the challenges of tomorrow. Extremely flexible format and approach enables teachers to meet key standards and outcomes while serving their specific school and student needs. Turnkey lesson plans and assets make teacher prep easy, and improves effective instruction for students. Strong growth in both content knowledge, skills and perception of self-capacity achieved in a wide variety of learning environments. Development of argumentative writing skills prepares students for AP and other college- readiness exams. DOES IT WORK?

27 27BIG HISTORY PROJECT / INTRODUCTION Follow Big History Project David Christian’s TED talk Check out the site (you can register!) Learn more about Bill Gates’ participation GO DEEPER


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