For Teachers|October Conference

The 2013 October Conference for Teachers
Friday, October 18, 2013

Download Registration Form

Please join us at our 56th annual October Conference for Teachers - a professional development opportunity in social studies education.  The 2013 conference will take place in Cooperstown, New York, on Friday, October 18.

This professional development opportunity focuses on current issues, topics and practices in social studies education. You are invited to take part in our tradition of offering quality programming and education to New York’s teachers and students. The conference is held on the campus of the New York State Historical Association and The Farmers’ Museum.

This year's conference will include New York State COMMON CORE CURRICULUM.  Other sessions include skills based learning, hands-on museum workshops, historical lectures, and include "working" sessions for teachers.

Come share your knowledge with other teachers from across the state this October!


Pre-registration for sessions:

Session 1:
9:00am -10:30 am

Museum Art and the Common Core: Fenimore, A Case Study

Using the Fenimore Museum's exhibit 'American Masters' as a point of
reference, participants will learn how Visual Teaching Strategies and student
centered discussions can assist with developing critical thinking skills - an
essential component of the CORE curriculum. 
This session will relate directly to Social Studies.
Laura Nicholls, Director of Fine and Practical, Arts, Nanuet Public Schools, retired.

Common Core: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

The session examines implementing common core standards in secondary school lessons
on the struggle to end slavery in the United States with a particular focus on
the emancipation proclamation.  Presenter: Alan Singer, Director, Secondary Education Social, Studies, Department of Teaching, Literacy and Leadership at Hofstra University.

Project Based Learning in Social Studies

Project learning, also known as project-based learning, is a dynamic approach to
teaching in which students explore real-world problems and challenges,
simultaneously developing cross-curriculum skills while working in small
collaborative groups. Because project-based learning is filled with active
and engaged learning, it inspires students to obtain a deeper knowledge of the
subjects they're studying.  Presenter:  Rich Pyszczek, Buffalo Public Schools Curriculum Lead Social, Studies Teacher.

Session 2:
10:45 am-12:00 pm

Using the Common Core to Teach Historical Thinking

This session will introduce participants to the use of historical records in classroom
instruction. Immigration, Civil War, and Slavery documents will be used to
illustrate how the use of historical records address common core learning
outcomes.  Presenters: Julie Daniels, Education Coordinator, NYS Archives; and Jessica Maul, Education Consultant, NYS Archives.

at Cultural Objects: Their Interpretation, and Application to the Common Core

Looking at Cultural Objects, Their Interpretation and Application to the Common Core:
Utilizing the collection pieces on display at the Fenimore House, this session
will examine a variety of objects made by Haudenosaunee People at various times
in history, explore the cultural relevance of these objects, and look at how
materials like this can be used within the Common Core study of Native
Americans.  As these materials are really “primary source ‘documents’”
when it comes to interpreting Native Peoples, understanding the symbols, usages
and evolution of these objects will help teachers better explain the changes over
time that the Haudenosaunee underwent and why these materials are still
important to them today.  Presenter: Perry Ground, Project Coordinator, Native American Resource Center, Rochester City Schools.


Special Presentation, David Carlyon
1:45pm – 2:45pm

19th-Century Circus: Sex, Violence and Politics

In Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain described a circus as "the
splendidest sight that ever was." But despite this sweetly innocent image
from 1883, Twain knew that circus before the Civil War had been raw stuff for
rowdy audiences. Touring circus presented performers in skimpy clothes, and
performances with a strong hint of sex. Reflecting a participatory age, talking
clowns told dirty jokes and political jokes, bantering with raucous audiences.
(One clown, Dan Rice, was nationally famous for his political wit, and then ran
for president - legitimately - from the ring.) Circus had to fight locals
daily, with Hudson River towns especially notorious. But by the 1880s rowdiness
became considered vulgar, Circus turned into innocent family amusement, and a
sentimental symbol. Why did circus change? How did politics change? How did
America change?

David Carlyon is a writer and independent scholar. He has a Ph.D. in theater history from Northwestern University and was a clown with Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus. He has been an Equity actor and playwright, graduated from the University of Michigan, served as a military policeman, and then graduated from Berkeley Law. His award-winning "Dan Rice: The Most Famous Man You’ve Never Heard Of," is a biography and cultural history of 19th-century America.


Session 3:
3:00pm-4:00pm (Skills Based Workshops)*$5 additional materials fee on workshops

-  Native American Culture to share with students: Corn Husk Doll Making and Wampum Bead Craft
-  Hearth Cooking at The Farmers’ Museum
-  Pharmacy Workshop at The Farmers’ Museum


Download Registration Form



Conference Registration includes free admission
to the Fenimore Art Museum and The Farmers’ Museum

2013 Exhibitions on view:
- American Masters: Thomas Cole to Grandma Moses (reopens Saturday, October 19)
- Forging Perfection: Masterworks from The Farmers’ Museum Blacksmith Shop
- Splendidly Dressed: American Indian Robes and Regalia
- Places in Passing: Contemporary Landscapes by Susan Jones Kenyon
- Plain & Fancy: Native American Splint Baskets

Permanent Exhibitions:
-American Memory: Recalling the Past in Folk Art
-Paintings of American Life
-The Cooper Family Collection
-Otsego: A Meeting Place (Native American interpretive site)


Country Inn & Suites 4470 State Highway 28 Milford, NY 13807 (607)286-7600   website:

For reservations tell them you are with the October Conference for Teachers  $99  per night for 10/17 & 10/18 Call for this rate by October 10th.



Back To Top print