The readings for the first part of this course really encouraged me to evaluate my goals for teaching social studies. I have been teaching fourth grade social studies for the past four years. There is a great deal of content in the curriculum. When teachers feel overwhelmed we tend to gloss over deep understanding and settle for fragile knowledge. During classroom discussions I ask the deeper questions, and I try to push the students towards deep understanding, but when it comes to writing a unit assessment, I often ask questions that would just show fragile knowledge. I am going to set a goal for myself to spend some time figuring out ways to administer performance assessments instead of ones that assess superficial knowledge.
How do you assess your students for deep understanding?
Are there some things that just need to be memorized like the state, capitals, and abbreviations?
(Fourth grade example)
What kinds of activities do you use for active learning?
What are your responses to these readings?
I also really liked reading and reexplaining the definition of social studies. I think people ask that question quite often. What is social studies? The readings of the first part of this course made the definition much clearer. I think the main goal of social studies is to create positive world citizens that are able to make good decisions for themselves and for the world. To accomplish this goal a teacher needs to draw on a variety of disciplines.
Is the NCSS definition of social studies different than what you thought?
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Received on Sun Mar 04 2012 - 14:07:36 EST