Social Studies



The social studies curriculum follows the scope and sequence of the new Department of Education standards which teach concepts around history, geography, economics and cultures.  Building on the importance of teaching critical thinking and investigation skills, students learn social studies by relying as much as possible on using primary sources such as photographs, letters, maps, songs, original documents and trade books rather than using traditional text books.  For example, in a second grade social studies unit about "education in the community" students interviewed their parents about what education in their community looked like when they were in second grade.  The entire grade then mounted an exhibit with their own written interviews and photographs which was on display for the entire school community.  As the scope of social studies widens from focusing on the individual, to the community, to the larger world, students' experiences and interactions with the local community and its resources also expands.  Our fifth grade partners with the traveling Greenpoint Monitor Museum which brings the Civil War to life by having students study old photographs, artifacts and uniforms, and watching re-enactments of activities from that time.