If World War I Was a Bar Fight - 2 views
A Purpose for Social Studies - 1 views
social studies is about understanding things, and not very much about learning skills.
social studies should be part of the curriculum for the purpose of helping students understand human interactions that occurred in the past, are occurring now, and that are likely to occur in the future. The reason for these understandings is they may help students develop and nurture values that will make it more likely that they will be able to determine for any situation what the right thing is and do it, especially when doing the right thing is hard to do. It is about decency, respect, courage and honor. This is not a difficult idea to understand, but it can take a lifetime to appreciate.
I even require that my students to begin their lesson plans with the phrase “I want my students to understand…”
Reasons are important!
I ask each student to complete these two sentences:
1. "I know about or understand"_______________________
2. "I know how to"_________________________________
The students are told that these understanding and skills can be about anything, and not necessarily social studies, which is what I teach. Usually, students are comfortable expressing what they understand and know how to do when the context for doing so is not threatening. When they have finished writing the completions to the sentences, there is period when I ask each student to tell the class what it is they understand and know how to do. During the process, I question them about how they came to understand whatever they wrote and how they learned the skill they indicated. It is an interesting exercise.
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Following that, I give an assignment
to write a description of what a person would have to DO in order for the student to make an inference that the person actually understood what the student said he or she understood.