Education

Poptential™ Expands Bell Ringer Content in Free Social Studies Curriculum

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. — Poptential™, an award-winning family of free social studies course packages, has expanded and enhanced its Bell Ringer content with the goal of providing a bell ringer for every day of the school year. Click to tweet.

Bell Ringers are brief conversation starters for use at the beginning of class to get students thinking. Some are tied to a specific date or holiday, and others are interesting topics that connect to a subject covered in class.

“Teachers like Bell Ringers because they add structure to the beginning of class as students are filing in, and warm up students so they are ready to learn,” said Julie Smitherman, a former social studies teacher and director of content at Certell, Inc., the nonprofit behind Poptential. “Students like Bell Ringers because they use media-rich content that sparks their curiosity and leads to thought-provoking discussions.”

Poptential Bell Ringers each feature a short video clip, a unique tidbit of knowledge, and thought-provoking questions to spike curiosity and engagement. They can be added to teacher lesson plans daily or weekly.

Recent Bell Ringers have covered diverse topics including ice cream sandwich day discussing America’s love of ice cream in movies and politics, Vince Lombardi’s role in improving race relations via football, and a history of Google and discussion of its status as a monopoly.

Poptential course packages include everything instructors need to teach a subject, including lessons, e-books, bell ringers, quizzes, and tests. The lessons use a variety of pop culture media to illustrate concepts, including those taken from sitcoms, movies, animations, cartoons, late-night shows, and other sources. The curriculum is standards-based and developed by teachers.

Poptential is available via a digital platform that allows students to access lessons even in poor bandwidth environments. Course packages in American History, World History, U.S. Government/Civics, and Economics are available free at www.poptential.org.

About Certell, Inc.

Certell is a 501(c)3 nonprofit whose mission is to foster a generation of independent thinkers. More than 30,000 teachers from throughout the United States have signed up to use Certell’s Poptential™ family of free social studies courses, and thousands more students are reached through Certell’s college-level courses in law and economics, and SensibleSchool™ instruction for home-schoolers, employees, and inmates. Certell course packages have won a number of awards, including EdTech Digest Awards for Curriculum and Instruction Solution, Tech&Learning Best Tool for Back to School, Tech Edvocate Awards, Bronze Award of Excellence from the National Association of Economics Educators, and Civvys Awards. More information is available at certell.org or on Twitter @CertellOrg.

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