Each year, the School of Education and the regional centers lead professional development workshops for 6-12 grade teachers in Indiana. The sessions provide a deep dive into one Indiana social studies standard, enriching teacher knowledge and enhancing the world history and geography curriculum. This year, the theme is trade and commerce. Teachers have the opportunity to learn about such diverse topics as the Trans-Siberian Railroad, China’s New Silk Road project and its impact on the Middle East, and soft power.
This year, on behalf of IAUNRC, Brian Cwiek teaches about the role of cotton, the cotton industry, and the global cotton trade in central Eurasia. The presentation helps teachers make connections between the history of the Silk Road and modern commodities exchanges, and enriches teachers’ understanding of global commerce in the past and present. Two meetings of these social studies teacher workshops have already taken place, and several more will be conducted in the fall.