kitchen table math, the sequel: Galloping through world history

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Galloping through world history

re: New York State Common Core Social Studies Framework Grades 9-12
Catherine forwarded this social studies framework (or whatever it is). This monstrosity would be laughable if I didn't know how much pain it was going to inflict on students and teachers. The idea of galloping through world history from 10,000 (!!) BCE to the present in 9th and 10th grades is beyond absurd. The only way to do this is with breathtaking superficiality, especially in the 9th grade, which goes from 10,000 BCE all the way to 1750 (yup, that's 1750 in what used to be called AD). Fourteen-year-olds are supposed to cover all this content knowledge while also learning the "practices" of history and social studies, following the strands of 10 ridiculously huge themes, and developing "literacy" in reading, writing, and talking about history.

It seems as though the geniuses who devised the program fused together the goals of Columbia Teachers College critical thinking devotees with Hirschian content knowledge folks and then added in the ideas of everyone residing between the two poles (Common Core, National History Standards, National Council for the Social Studies, etc.) What an ungodly mess!
and see: A historian reads New York State's Common Core Social Studies Standards 9-12


Froggiemama said...

But this is already what they do in AP World HIstory, in ONE YEAR. This is taken in 10th grade at my kids school. Why weren't the historians complaining about that?

Anonymous said...

At my very rigorous high school, we did this in 3 years: Ancient/Medieval in 9th grade, Modern European/World in 10th; American in 11th. It was a lot, but we got it done. Have to admit that we were not being made into little historians, although each year we did research and write term papers.

Anonymous said...

What would be a reasonable amount of time to cover world history? How come they can't cover world history more than once in K-8? In fact, why don't the educrats ever discuss how to strengthen K-8 to the point where students have basic (solid) literacy in all subjects? Instead, they're always wanting to put a bandaid on things once the kids get to high school.

lgm said...

Sounds like what we already have for Global History, with maybe the addition of the novels that are read in the Honors version.

It is not going to solve the nonparticipation issue. Regent's Global History is historically the exam that prevents reg. ed. students from obtaining their diploma. These students need a better K-5 curriculum, one that helps them learn to read, remember, and think and stay on grade level in reading.

Crimson Wife said...

I went to a secondary school that had grades 7-12.

I don't remember what 7th was supposed to be because it was '89-'90 and our Social Studies teacher tossed out the normal curriculum to spend a year on current events. So we studied the end of apartheid in South Africa, the protests in Tienanmen square, the collapse of the Soviet bloc, the invasion of Panama, and the buildup to the First Gulf War. Definitely a very interesting year!

8th and 9th were U.S. history 1492-1860 and then 1860-1945 (theoretically to present but we didn't get past WWII).

10th was world geography with some non-Western world history thrown in.

11th & 12th had electives: ancient & medieval alternated with modern European history, 20th century U.S. history, and semesterlong courses in economics and law.

froggiemama said...

I went to junior high/senior high in the mid 70's, much of it in a state with poor schools. The curriculum then was
7th grade: Southeast Asia (it was the tail end of the Vietnam War so I guess it was topical)
8th grade colonial US through the Civil War
9th grade: Civics and our local state Civil War history
High school: one year of US history from colonials to WWII.

And that was it. No world history, no geography, no in depth study of anything, no AP. The only reason I had anything else was because I spent time in a French high school where we were doing a French history class which appeared to incorporate lots of urban planning and geography (we had to learn the layout of the Paris sewer system, for example)

So I am personally thrilled with the coverage of history my kids are getting here in NY, from middle school onwards. They know so, so, so much more than we did at that age.

Anonymous said...

I wonder, what are Ed's thought's on teaching History backwards?