When I was teaching social studies in elementary school, I often found that while my ideas were endless, my planning time was limited. Despite my best efforts, I struggled to adequately prepare for all of my social studies lessons in a given week. It wasn’t until after several years in the classroom that I learned how to craft compelling activities featuring social studies content that were engaging and meaningful for students. The key? Cross-curricular learning.

“Cross-subject studies enhance critical thinking skills,” says Karen Smith, a 30-year ELA veteran and instructional coach for Maryland Public Schools. “Educators who teach and promote literacy skills...

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  • About the Author:

    Audrey Nelson is a former elementary school teacher whose passions include reading, adventuring, and dressing up as Star Wars characters to teach social studies. From Vermont and Connecticut to California and Costa Rica, Nelson has helped students all over North and Central America discover their love of learning. Now working for Turnitin, she helps to develop meaningful teaching tools for educators around the world.