About Us

#sschat is more than just a hashtag. It’s an open group of dedicated network of educators and enthusiasts who aim to improve their personal, and our collective, teaching of social studies subject matter. We aim to help social studies teachers by helping to facilitate democratic collaboration where educators can challenge & support each other to grow in their craft and, consequently, offer richer learning experiences for students. Activities within our network includes the use of #sschat and affiliated hashtags on Twitter, discussions on our Facebook page, and participation in the annual NCSS unconference, but we are always looking to grow our network into new spaces. 

Join in the #sschat conversation

1. Join the live #sschat discussions on Twitter Every Monday Night from 7-8 PM EST (see calendar on the home screen) 

2. Join in 24/7 Discussions on Social Studies related topics on twitter follow the hashtag #sschat or affiliated hashtags

3. Like our Facebook Group

4. Like our #sschat Book Club on Facebook and join in the conversations

5. Write a blog post that will be shared on our website and Facebook page with our #sschat network

6. Visit this website for archives of Twitter chats and more

#sschat history

The following #sschat history was written by co-leader Dan Krutka after his presentation at the 2017 Society for Information Technology & Teacher Education International Conference in Austin, Texas. To reference, please use the following:

Krutka, D. G. (2017). The #sschat Network: History, Purpose, & Implications of a Subject-Area Community. In P. Resta & S. Smith (Eds.), Proceedings of Society for Information Technology & Teacher Education International Conference 2017 (pp. 2190-2200). Chesapeake, VA: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE).

Abstract: In this paper, the author reviews the history of the #sschat network, an informal and organic professional development community that emerged on Twitter in 2010 and has grown beyond solely that medium and shifted ever since. The author has served as a co-leader of #sschat since 2012 and therefore tells the #sschat story from an emic perspective. The paper details the rise and evolution of #sschat, responsibilities of co-leaders, efforts of collective resource sharing, organization of face-to-face events, and online network infrastructure. In sharing this history, the author hopes educators and researchers might consider the possibilities and challenges of understanding informal subject-area communities online. He concludes with implications for the field.

#sschat history preview

Social studies educators Ron Peck and Greg Kulowiec were early #edchat participants who believed a subject-area social studies chat could help them apply their learning to their social studies classrooms. After a brief consideration of a history-specific hashtag, #sschat was born through a Twitter conversation on July 6th, 2010 and the first synchronous #sschat Twitter chat was held on Monday, July 12th, 2010 as participants discussed using tech tools in the social studies classroom. Over the next several months, the chat remained small in numbers, discussing topics like project-based learning (PBL), critical thinking, and using maps in the social studies classroom. Greg Kulowiec described #sschat on Twitter to Kristen Schulten of the New York Times in 2011 in ways that still resonate with the ways social studies educators use Twitter today:

Participants in SSchat tend to share links, resources, lesson plans, examples of projects and student work. Blog posts written by teachers that relate to the discussion topic are also extremely helpful. Although SSchat takes place on Monday nights as a synchronous discussion, people post to Twitter all week and tag their tweets with #sschat as a method to share resources asynchronously. Participants tend to use the chat hashtag all week to ask questions, share resources and prepare for the upcoming chat. We welcome all, and especially encourage new social studies teachers to join in. (n.p.)

An #sschat Twitter chat has been held nearly every Monday since, with chats occurring from 7 to 8pm Eastern Standard Time (EST). Since the inception of #sschat, this network has always depended on all the #sschat participants who make the chats and sharing worthwhile. For a fuller history of #sschat, read Dan’s article linked above. 

#sschat co-leaders

Past #sschat co-leaders: Ron Peck, Greg Kulowiec, Becky Ellis, Shawn McCusker, Melissa Seideman, and Joe Sangillo.

sschat Seattle 2012
#sschaters in Seattle in 2012
EdCampSS leaders in Philadelphia in March of 2012

Current #sschat co-leaders: Dan Krutka (@dankrutka), Michael Milton (@42thinkdeep), Chris Hitchcock (@CHitch94), Andrew Swan (@flipping_A_tchr), Mary-Owen Holmes (@MsHolmesTeach), and Jessica Torres (@Owl_b_TorresEdu).

Michael, Dan, and Chris at #NCSS16 in Washington D.C.

#sschat References

Krutka, D. G. (2017). The #sschat Network: History, Purpose, & Implications of a Subject-Area Community. In P. Resta & S. Smith (Eds.), Proceedings of Society for Information Technology & Teacher Education International Conference 2017 (pp. 2190-2200). Chesapeake, VA: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE).

Krutka, D. G., & Carpenter, J. P. (2016). Participatory learning through social media: How and why social studies educators use Twitter. Contemporary Issues in Technology and Teacher Education, 16(1), 38-59. Retrieved from https://citejournal.s3.amazonaws.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/v16i1socialstudies1.pdf

Krutka, D. G. & Milton, M. K. (2013). The Enlightenment meets Twitter: Using social media in the social studies classroom. Ohio Social Studies Review, 50(2), 22-29.

McCusker, S. (2012, July 19). What is #sschat? I’m glad you asked. Go Where You Grow [Blog post]. Retrieved from https://gowhereyougrow.wordpress.com/2012/07/19/what-is-sschat-im-glad-you-asked/

Nestico, S. (2012, March 16). Countdown: EdCamp Social Studies. Coal Cracker Classroom [Blog post]. Retrieved from https://coalcrackerclassroom.wordpress.com/2012/03/16/countdown-edcamp-social-studies/

Peck, R. (2011, September 17). A Personal Learning Network for Social Studies Educators Herff Jones/Nystrom. Edutopia. Retrieved from https://www.edutopia.org/groups/social-studies/75179

Schulten, K. (2011, September 30). Teachers teaching teachers, on Twitter: Q. and A. on ‘Edchats.’ New York Times. Retrieved from https://learning.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/09/30/teachers-teaching-teachers-on-twitter-q-and-a-on-edchats/

Tabor, B. (2014, December 5). Chats spark resources for educators: TWU professor helms document of ways to teach about Ferguson. Denton Record Chronicle. Retrieved from http://www.dentonrc.com/local-news/local-news-headlines/20141205-chats-spark-resource-for-educators.ece

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