Chapter 12 Brief
Four Great Resources
A variety of resources for teaching social studies is available, beginning with the school library or resource center. “The late Hilda Taba, an educator whom I greatly admired, insisted that expensive excursions away from the school were too often lost on children who hadn’t actually learned yet to observe the environments and use the resources that are near at hand – namely, the school.” Children need the resources located there, both print and electronic, and they need to feel connected to the librarian, too, and able to call on him or her for help.
Teachers are encouraged to use a wide range of instructional resources because inquiry, concept formation, and skill development require extensive information searches and because not all children learn in the same way. The main idea of this chapter is, “The main sources of subject matter for the social studies curriculum, in addition to society’s needs and the children’s own lives, are the social science disciplines. The social studies curriculum in the elementary school often integrates these, typically leading with history or geography, and steers students toward becoming democratic citizens. The key to teaching these subject matters well is to help children do them–engage in the kinds of thinking and action associated with each–as well as learn about them. Like the two wings of an airplane, neither works alone.” This chapter helps identify the rationale of teaching in five steps. Those steps are judgment, empathy and self-knowledge, imagination, agency, and the long view. Another subject outlined is steps to what should be taught concerning history and in what order. That order is; Democracy: Change and Continuity in American Democracy, Culture: The Gathering and Interactions of Peoples, Cultures, and Ideas, Technology: Economic and Technological Changes and Their Relation to Society, Ideas, and the Environment, and the World Role: The Changing Role of America in the...
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