Social Studies Research and Practice
Volume 2, Number 3, Winter 2007
Place-Based Learning in Teacher Education: A Windshield Survey
Reese H. Todd
Texas Tech University
Certification students in a post-baccalaureate teacher preparation program investigated the local educational environment in a social studies methods course with a brief community study of several K-4 neighborhood schools. School district maps and street maps guided their exploration of the city between the university and the schools where they had field placements and jobs as substitute teachers. Student summaries and reflections with photos and sketch maps promoted discussion of issues relevant to informed social studies educators. Evaluation of the instructional approach indicated an increased student awareness of local places, using a model of inquiry applicable to elementary social studies instruction, as well as promoting place-based instruction and potential partnerships between neighborhood schools and communities. The approach established a collegial, cooperative climate among future teachers for developing effective social studies programs.
About the Author(s)…
Reese H. Todd, an assistant professor at Texas Tech University, blends her interest in geography with teacher preparation in social studies methods courses for elementary and middle level certification students. She brings her experience in public education to developing partnerships between the university and local school districts. Her academic interests include social studies education, qualitative research methods, service-learning, geographic literacy, teacher preparation. Dr. Todd received degrees from the University of Oklahoma (Ph.D.), Oklahoma State University (MA), and Southern Methodist University (BA). Contact information: firstname.lastname@example.org