Philosophy and Instruction
The primary purpose of the kindergarten through high school social studies
program in Mid-Del is to help young people understand, through the study of the past and present, what it means to be a human being in society and develop the ability to make informed and reasoned decisions for the public good as citizens of a culturally diverse, democratic society in an interdependent world of finite resources. Social studies is a vital part of the curriculum as it embraces the context within which future adults will act as they apply the knowledge and skills gained from the rest of their school experiences. These future adults must be knowledgeable, thoughtful, participating citizens in many contexts: as members of families, as producers and consumers in the marketplace, as students in schools, as participants in associations, as constituents of different levels of political states, and as members of the global community. They should be able to think creatively and critically in order to solve problems and make decisions.
Social studies is more than a collection of separate disciplines to be offered in a piecemeal fashion throughout a child's schooling. Social studies utilizes the integrated study of the social sciences and humanities to accomplish its aims. This study is articulated across grade levels to maintain the focus of the program, the promotion of civic competence. Civic competence means that students will acquire the ability and desire to become fully engaged in the activities of society. This requires the development of appropriate knowledge, participatory skills, and a commitment to democratic principles.
All children can learn the concepts, skills, and attitudes associated with the social studies. Social studies should enable all learners to develop their abilities to the utmost. The stimuli we expect students to use to create knowledge should be developmentally appropriate for the ages of the students involved. The skills we expect students to use should be experienced and practiced repeatedly in relevant situations. The commitment to democratic principles we expect students to have should be reflected in school experiences. The social studies program must engage learners in situations which call upon their knowledge, require them to apply their skills, and ask them to act in accordance with basic values.
Social studies instruction must be much more than the presentation and
memorization of factual information. It must provide opportunities for students to utilize the factual content in ways that make sense to them so that the content has real meaning.
Consideration should be given to include content that is vital, that will contribute to the student's development as a participating citizen in a democratic society and interdependent world. There is important knowledge that students will need to have during a lifetime of citizenship. For example, citizens in the United States will need to be much more knowledgeable about cultures, events, and economic development of nations around the world. As technology continues to improve, we will be increasingly in contact with citizens of other nations and citizens of the United States must be as informed about others as they are of us. Future citizens must be capable of utilizing skills learned in dealing with issues that will confront them in the future, both within the United States and in an international context. Students must have the opportunity to develop the skills necessary for a lifetime of active citizenship involvement. They must be aware of the interests as citizens at various levels, including local, state, national, and international. They must be able to develop the skills they need to be able to think critically about issues past, present, and future.
In summation, the ultimate goal of the Mid-Del Social Studies program is to provide the necessary instruction that enables students to think and act as positive productive citizens upon graduation. This requires a basic knowledge of the many content areas (i.e. civics, history, geography, economics) as well as thinking skills necessary to function as an informed citizen.
Sequence of Mid-Del Social Studies Program Required Courses and Assessments
K- Social Living (self, school, home)
1- The individual, family, and school
2- Neighborhood, communities, responsibilities
3- Community Local benchmarks
4- State history and US gegraphy Local benchmarks
5- US Hist. (exploration-Civil War) State CRT
6- World Geography (Western Hemisphere) Local benchmarks
7- World Geography (Eastern Hemisphere) State CRT
8- US History (colonial-Civil War)* State CRT
9- OKlahoma History* Local benchmark
9- Physical Geography* Local benchmark
10- World History* Local benchmarks
11- US History (1850-1975)* State CRT (EOI)**
12- US Government* Local benchmarks
* preAP/AP courses are offered in these araes.
** part of ACE graduation requirements