1st Edition

Exploring America in the 1980s Living in the Material World (Grades 6-8)

By Molly Sandling, Kimberley Chandler Copyright 2014
    154 Pages
    by Routledge

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    Exploring America in the 1980s: Living in the Material World is an interdisciplinary humanities unit that looks at literature, art, and music of the 1980s to provide an understanding of how those living through the decade experienced and felt about the many social changes taking place around them. Through the lens of "identity," it explores why these changes occurred and lends an ear to the voices of the groups that clamored for them. Cultural icons like Madonna and Bill Cosby are examined alongside larger issues such as the end of the Cold War and a changing economic and political identity.

    The unit uses field-tested instructional strategies for language arts and social studies from The College of William and Mary, as well as new strategies, and it includes graphic organizers and other learning tools. It can be used to complement a social studies or language arts curriculum or as standalone material in a gifted program.

    Grades 6-8

    Acknowledgement Unit Overview Implementation Guide Lesson 1: The Inauguration of Ronald Reagan Lesson 2: The Evil Empire: The Cold War Heats Up Lesson 3: Changing Technology in the 1980s Lesson 4: It’s a Material World: Yuppies and the Affluence of the 1980s Lesson 5: The King and Queen of Pop: Michael Jackson and Madonna Lesson 6: The Rust Belt: The Uneven Economy of the 1980s Lesson 7: A Rainbow Coalition: Race in the 1980s Lesson 8: The Changing Face of America: New Immigration Patterns of the 1980s Lesson 9: The Reagan Doctrine: Involvement of the United States in World Affairs Lesson 10: The End of the Cold War and the 1980s References Appendix: Unit Glossary About the Authors Common Core State Standards Alignment


    Molly Sandling is a teacher at Jamestown High School in Williamsburg, VA. She completed her master's degree in history at Yale University and her master's degree in education at The College of William and Mary. She has written social studies units on various decades in United States history, one of which she received an NAGC Curriculum Award for in 2012.

    Dr. Kimberley Chandler is the Curriculum Director at the Center for Gifted Education at The College of William and Mary. She completed her master's degree in gifted education and her Ph.D. in educational policy, planning, and leadership, with an emphasis in gifted education administration, at William and Mary. While in the master's degree program, she wrote the language arts unit Literary Reflections and received the A. Harry Passow Classroom Teacher Scholarship from the National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC). During her doctoral program, she was a participant in the David L. Clark Graduate Student Research Seminar in Educational Administration and Policy, sponsored by the University Council for Educational Administration (UCEA). She also received the NAGC Outstanding Doctoral Student Award and the NAGC Hollingworth Research Award.Kimberley's professional background includes teaching gifted students in a variety of settings, serving as an administrator of a school district gifted program, and providing professional development training for teachers and administrators nationally and internationally. She has also served as an adjunct instructor for gifted education endorsement courses for the University of Virginia, the College of Charleston, Casenex, Inc., and The College of William and Mary. Kimberley is the Network Representative on the NAGC Board of Directors, past chair of the NAGC Early Childhood Network and past co-chair of the NAGC Education Committee, Member-at-Large Representative and Membership Chair for the American Educational Research Association (AERA) Research on Giftedness, Creativity, and Talent (ROGCT) Special Interest Group, Newsletter Editor for the CEC-TAG Board of Directors, board member of the Virginia Association for the Gifted (VAG), and USA Representative to the World Council for Gifted and Talented Children (WCGTC). Her research interests include curriculum implementation and policy issues in gifted education and the design and evaluation of professional development programs for teachers of the gifted.Recently, she coauthored a book for Prufrock Press with Dr. Tamra Stambaugh: Effective Curriculum for Underserved Gifted Students. She has also served as the editor for publications from the Center for Gifted Education that are distributed by Prufrock.

    Authors Molly Sadling and Kimberly Chandler focus on “identity” as the overarching concept for the units and provide generalizations that tie learning to a clearly articulated curriculum framework and learning goals for students in Grades 6 to 8. Ten field-tested, exciting lessons in each book guide students in interdisciplinary learning that explores what it was like to live in America through various decades, examining issues such as the changing economy, political identity, and influences of technological advancements that have had profound impact on our country.,Gifted Child Today, 4/13/15