After reading yesterday’s post C-3 Social Studies “Framework” Update by one of my co-writers, I did a quick search to learn more about the Social Studies Standards. One thing I stumbled upon concerned me. Please take a few moments and read the Common Core brochure for the CA Annual Social Studies Conference (2013). That’s right, I linked to a California file, so why bring it up on a NC blog? Well, this is a perfect example of why each state should write standards.
Did you see the graphics? It looked to me like a protest – fists in the air and signs of demands (CCSS) held high. The social justice focus is not a surprise – it is CA. One item that jumped out at me is the session / workshop on Big History. Another writer has discussed Big History here. It is a Bill Gates Funded project. He has been heavily involved. Teachers are already challenged with not enough time in the classroom to properly cover American History and World History. Gates wants to add Big History or replace Geography with his project. We need to take a deeper look at this…but that is for a future post.
• Sessions and Workshops address topics in all subject areasAmerican History | World History | GeographyEconomics | Government | Civic EducationTechnology | Common Core StandardsBig History
After seeing the CA brochure, I went to NC Council for the Social Studies page and saw no areas of concern on the conference registration form (2014). I like the fact they request input from their members. If you know any social studies teachers, find out if they are going. What feedback do they have from past conferences?
Much more work is needed to understand the Common Core Social Studies Standards. We need state / local control over the standards, curriculum and tests. With the merge of ELA and social studies, I am concerned that NC has ceded too much ground to those outside our state.
In the interest of transparency, we need to learn more about those writing the standards, who funded them, are any NC High School Social Studies Teachers part of the process? Will we find parallels to the ELA Standards Process as discussed in Dr. Stotsky’s paper, Common Core’s Invalid Validation Committee? Let’s make sure the study committee asks those questions.