Teacher Innovation Network

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USC Shoah Foundation Executive Director, Stephen Smith along with guest speakers, Kim Feinberg, USC Shoah Foundation Regional Consultant in South Africa and Founder and CEO of the Tomorrow Trust, and Freddy Mutanguha, Director of the Kigali Genocide Memorial Centre in Rwanda, address the importance of using testimony in education from a global perspective. This video is excerpted from the keynote presentation, Teaching, Testimony, and Transformation: Understanding the Global Landscape, at the Institute’s Teaching with Testimony Master Teacher Program Best Practices Workshop in August 2012.

USC Shoah Foundation’s Teacher Innovation Network fosters collaboration among teachers around the world who have intersected with the Institute’s education programs.

It enables teachers who have benefitted from the Institute’s seminars on effective use of testimony in the classroom to converse and further refine their teaching practices. In short, it picks up where Institute professional development programs end, providing a continuous loop of engagement.

Research shows that when educators have opportunities to work with colleagues and share their expertise, student achievement on standardized assessments increases.

The primary purpose of the Network is to encourage this kind of worldwide collaboration and support, and to keep members informed about the work of the Institute and its many rich educational offerings.

Membership in the Network is automatic based on educators’ participation in the Institute’s professional-development programs – including Teaching With Testimony and ITeach – or their interest in Institute educational resources, such as IWitness.

Monthly e-blasts keep members updated on the activities of the Institute and its education department. The updates include literature on available content and resources; upcoming professional-development opportunities; and items framed around singular themes, such as historical events, holidays and best practices.

The e-blasts also invite dialogue by asking educators to share their professional opinions on various questions.

What educators are saying about teaching with video testimony:

I want to help the students see that…when we see intolerance—that when we see bigotry and racism—not doing something is simply not an option.

—Paige Leven
Roybal Learning Center (Los Angeles)

What [the workshop] will allow us to do is to take what the archive has to offer and bring it into the classroom, take it back to our schools. And we all have colleagues who teach other subjects, we have colleagues in other schools. It will just keep blossoming.

—Jeremy Howard
U.S. history teacher
Francis Parker Middle School (San Diego)
Participant in inaugural Master Teacher Workshop