What We Believe
In Cherry Creek Schools, the study of Social Studies is guided by the state standards in History, Geography, Civics and Economics, with the understanding that several other disciplines including Anthropology, Psychology and Sociology have an important role within a comprehensive Social Studies program. Social Studies provides cornerstone skills that are vital to opening doors for a more diverse and innovative workforce and a more responsible citizenry.
As students progress through Social Studies education they use critical thinking, self-assessment, reasoning, problem-solving, collaboration, research and investigation to make new connections and develop transferable skills. The knowledge and skills provided through social studies are instrumental in preparing citizens to participate in our democratic society, to understand the complexity of the world and to comprehend the interdependencies that influence the present and shape the future.
Social Studies provides the context and understanding of how humans interact with each other and with the environment over time. It offers the crucial knowledge needed to create a framework for comprehending the systems of society.
Social Studies involves interdisciplinary applications, welcomes integration of the arts and humanities and should have direct and explicit connections to the Literacy Standards for English Language Arts. Disciplinary literacy practices in Social Studies strengthen students' literacy skills as they are called upon to cite textual evidence, understand disciplinary vocabulary, distinguish fact from opinion, identify competing or alternating claims, and narrate historical events.
Civics teaches the complexity of the origins, structure, and functions of governments; the rights, roles and responsibilities of ethical citizenship; the importance of law; and the skills necessary to participate in all levels of government. Civics instruction calls for students to learn how to use deliberative processes and follow rules and laws to take informed action in response to real-world problems.
Economics instruction calls for students to make sound economic decisions using economic data and identify prices in a market. Economics teaches how society manages its scarce resources, how people interact in the domestic and international markets and how forces and trends affect the economy as a whole. Personal financial literacy applies economic reasoning to help individuals understand how to manage their own scarce resources using a logical decision-making process of prioritization based on analysis of the costs and benefits of every choice.
Geography provides students with an understanding of spatial perspectives and technologies for spatial analysis, awareness of interdependence of world regions and resources and how places are connected at local, national and global scales. Geography instruction calls for students to reason spatially, construct maps and use geographic data, such as Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to solve problems.
History develops moral understanding, defines identity and creates an appreciation of how things change while building skills in judgment and decision-making. History enhances the ability to read varied sources and develop the skills to analyze, interpret and communicate. History instruction calls for students to classify, analyze and determine the purpose of a historical sources. Additionally, students make connections between the past and present, and analyze causes and effects of events in history.
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