Social Studies Department Philosophy and Goals
Historical Inquiry is an integral component of effective Social Studies and Humanities instruction.
Therefore, we will use essential questions to frame units of study and to develop the necessary scaffolding so that students can examine issues of substance and interest.
An essential component to Social Studies instruction is to read a variety of source materials daily.
Therefore, we will provide students with access to a variety of relevant and appropriate primary and secondary sources, as well as various, engaging, and complex texts on a daily basis.
Literate students in Social Studies apply strategic skills and behaviors.
Therefore, we will explicitly teach strategic academic skills and strategies, not for strategy’s sake, but to empower each learner to think in ways that enhance learning and understanding and result in the fluent application of these behaviors in Social Studies.
Reading/listening and writing/speaking are critical interrelated components of literacy in Social Studies and Humanities.
Therefore, we will provide access to high quality relevant source and text materials, as well as multimedia presentations with opportunities to engage in conversations about credibility, larger circumstances of time and place, and other important details, combined with opportunities for communicating personal thoughts and ideas orally and in writing.
Assessment of disciplinary literacy should be ongoing.
Therefore, we will assess, analyze, act, and adjust instruction to personalize learning.
The teacher is the critical decision maker in terms of instructional strategies most appropriate for each child.
Therefore, we will utilize available resources and tools to support personalized learning based on an analysis of collected evidence and a vision for desired results.
A coherent curriculum is mapped backwards from desired performance outcomes within a disciplinary literacy approach.
Therefore, we will use transfer goals, enduring understandings, and essential questions within and across disciplines to provide a coherent and results-focused approach to learning.
Apply the relevance of lessons to a given situation, problem, or challenge that is applicable and culturally relevant to students.
Formulate investigations using multiple sources of information to address a question, form an opinion, or to solve a problem.
Communicate and support ideas effectively to address a particular audience and purpose.
Apply knowledge of political and social structures to actively participate as an informed global citizen.