Social studies has as its primary purpose the
transmission of culture and ideals to each succeeding generation. In
order to educate students to function responsibly in our democratic
society, the social studies must teach the rights and responsibilities
found in a democracy through critical thinking and participatory
The aims of the social studies curriculum include
the education of students in the uniqueness of the democratic heritage
of the United States, while teaching the diversity, importance, and
contributions of other cultures. Knowledge of the interdependence of
countries throughout the world will enable citizens to face the
challenges and responsibilities that come from living in a global
The Social Studies Curriculum should enable
students to develop:
1. Civic responsibility and active civic
2. Perspectives on their own life experiences so
they see themselves as individuals with potential who can positively
contribute to the larger human adventure in time and place.
3. A critical understanding of the history,
geography, economics, traditions and values of the United States as
expressed in both their unity and diversity.
4. An understanding and appreciation of other
peoples and their cultures through world history and geography.
5. Critical and analytical thinking skills based
on data and experience.
These goals may be achieved through:
1. participatory and cooperative learning
2. enrichment through the use of a variety of
primary sources including documents, myths, legends, songs, diaries,
letters and speeches;
3. the infusion of physical geography at all
levels and in all subjects throughout the social studies;
4. the infusion of economics at all levels and
in all subjects throughout the social studies and;
5. the use of variety of a student assignments
including creative writing, research and oral histories.
Goals Adapted From:
Curriculum Task force of The
National Commission on Social Studies in the Schools. Charting A
Course For the 21st Century
. November 1989, p.