Wither Social Studies No More

Report
Wither Social Studies No More
S. G. Grant
Graduate School of Education
Binghamton University
If you live long enough…
You will make a lot of mistakes (Bill
Clinton)
 You will become the villain (Harvey Dent
in The Black Knight)
 You will see that every victory turns into
a defeat (Simone Beauvoir)
 You will see everything….

…including social studies on the
rebound
Despite being left behind, social studies
folks do not give up:
College, Career, and Civic Life (C3)
Framework for Social Studies State Standards
 New York State K-12 Social Studies
Framework

Standards are a start, but….
The new New York Social Studies
Framework is more reasonably expressed
than the previous one….
But still too much!
11.1b (point 3) “Students will analyze
slavery as a deeply established component
of the colonial economic system and social
structure, indentured servitude v. slavery,
the increased concentration of slaves in the
South, and the development of slavery as a
racial institution”
And the C3 Framework is a lot
too…
D2.His.2.9-12. Analyze change and
continuity in historical eras.
Our task…
To marry the global vision of the C3
Framework to the content specifics of the
NYS Framework in a way that honors,
supports, and extends teachers’ and
students’ best classroom ambitions.
But this is tricky work
Social studies plagued by too much content
 Social studies standards rarely translated
into useable curriculum and almost never
supported by state-level assessments
 Social studies instruction dominated by a
view that we have to teach every person,
place, and event before we ask students to
make sense of it.
 We get frustrated…students get
frustrated…and social studies withers….

Wither social studies no more…
The New York State K-12 Social Studies
Framework
 The College, Career, and Civic Life (C3)
Framework for Social Studies State
Standards
And now…
 The New York State K-12 Social Studies
Resource Toolkit and Professional
Development project

The C3 Framework
Kathy Swan—Project Director and Lead
Writer
 John Lee—Senior Consultant and
Contributing Writer

The heart of the the C3
Framework—Jerome Bruner
“We begin with the hypothesis that any
subject can be taught effectively in some
intellectually honest form to any child at
any stage of development”—The Process of
Education
The heart of the C3 framework-The Inquiry Arc

Dimension 1: Developing Questions and Planning
Inquiries

Dimension 2: Applying Disciplinary Concepts and
Tools (Civics, Economics, Geography, and History)

Dimension 3: Evaluating Sources and Using Evidence

Dimension 4: Communicating Conclusions and Taking
Action
Dimension 2: Applying disciplinary
tools and concepts
Literacy through social studies
Connections between the C3 Framework and the CCR
Anchor Standards
Dimensions
ELA Connections
D1: Developing Questions and Planning
Inquiries
R1
W7
SL1
D2: Applying Disciplinary Concepts and
Tools
R1-10
W7
SL1
L6
D3: Evaluating Sources and Using
Evidence
D4: Communicating Conclusions and
Taking Action
R1-10
W1, 2, 7-10
SL1
R1
W1-8
SL1-6
Bridging standards and practice
The NYS Social Studies Toolkit project
bridges the C3 Framework and the
NYS K-12 Social Studies Framework
The New York State K-12 Social Studies
Resource Toolkit and Professional
Development Project
Who…
Kathy Swan, John Lee, and Jean
Dorak—Project Management Team
 14 Teacher Writers
 42 Teacher Collaborative Council
 18 Content and Pedagogical
Reviewers

The New York State K-12 Social Studies
Resource Toolkit and Professional Development
Project
What…and When

Curriculum Development—14 Annotated Inquiries and
70 Abridged Inquiries/July 2014-August, 2015

Piloting—September 2014-March 2015

Professional Development—District, State-Level, and
National/July 2014-August 2015

Assessment—Assistance with design of new Regents
exams/Spring 2015-Spring 2018/19
The New York State K-12 Social Studies
Resource Toolkit and Professional
Development Project
Why…
 Because the Common Core-ELA is
necessary, but not sufficient
 Because translating standards into
practice is challenging work
 And because we need a new paradigm for
teaching and learning social studies
A new paradigm for social studies
In content-rich subjects, traditionally it
has been facts first, thinking later
…and it hasn’t worked.
* * * * *
 The C3 Inquiry Arc highlights thinking
with a purpose
…answering a compelling question

Compelling questions
Intellectually meaty
 Kid friendly

Intellectually meaty
Reflects an enduring issue, concern, or
debate in the field
 Demands the use of multiple disciplinary
lenses and perspectives

Kid friendly
Reflects a quality or condition that we
know children care about
 Honors and respects children’s
intellectual efforts

Compelling…or not so compelling?
Where are we?
 What were the causes of the Industrial
Revolution?
 Why is Albany the capital of New York?
 Can Canada and the US be friends
forever?
 Who won the Cold War?
 Who are our community helpers?
 What’s the deal with hair?

Toolkit inquiry elements






Compelling Question—based on Framework Key
Ideas
Supporting Questions—develop the content
Formative Performance Tasks—demonstrate
emerging understandings
Featured Sources—provide background knowledge
Summative Task—demonstrates evidence-based
arguments
Taking Informed Action—offers opportunities for
thoughtful engagement
…Inquiries rather than units…
A sample toolkit inquiry:
Does where you live matter?
Toolkit inquiries
By summer 2014, writers will produce:
14 annotated inquiries (1 per grade level
K-11; 2 at grade 12)
 70 abridged inquiries (5 per grade level K11; 10 at grade 12)

All will be available on-line through
EngageNY
Professional development
Several elements:
 Training—14 writers and 42 TCC
members have gone through 2-3 days
 Piloting—all 14 annotated inquiries will be
piloted by TCC members
 Resources…
Resources








Field guide—Fall 2014
Annotated inquiries (14) and abridged inquiries
(70)—Summer 2015
New York State Social Studies Council conference—
March 2015
Network Team Institute—May 2015
Social Studies for the Next Generation: The C3 Framework
NCSS Bulletin113—2013
Social Education—Volume 7, Issue 6, 2013
Teaching History with Big Ideas—Grant and Gradwell,
2010
C3 teachers—https://c3teachers.squarespace.com/
Remember…
“We begin with the hypothesis that any
subject can be taught effectively in some
intellectually honest form to any child at
any stage of development”—Jerome Bruner,
The Process of Education
Next steps for the project
•
•
•
•
•
This fall—Publishing the Field Guide
August-October—Refining, reviewing,
piloting, and revising the POC inquiries
November-February—Developing
additional annotated and abridged
inquiries
March—Piloting annotated inquiries
August—Publishing the Toolkit

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