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EDU-307-20, Social Studies in Elem School

INSTRUCTOR: Evelyn Spratt

SCHEDULE/DAY/TIME: SPE/Wednesday/5:30 - 9:30 PM, 10/24/2012-12/12/2012


-This course is designed to provide pre-service teachers with both the content and strategies to teach social studies in the elementary school. Using a variety of teaching-learning strategies, the learner will identify the content and processes to be taught in social studies and will consider and develop his/her own understanding of the strategies to execute a comprehensive approach to this content area.

-The class sessions are planned according to topic. The first class will cover the introduction and definition of Social Studies. The following sessions will cover the disciplines in Social Studies as well as specific methodologies to teach the content areas. An emphasis will also be placed on context knowledge. During each class, the readings and activities will cover content, pedagogy, and planning for each area.  The final week will be comprised of the learner’s application of the knowledge.

-Each class session is designed to stimulate active participation and discussion about the instructional methods in social studies. The learners will be expected to plan a social studies unit on a specific culture. The topic should be selected by the beginning of the second class. During each class, the learner will consider his/her project within the context of that session. At various points, the learner will complete components of the unit and submit them. During the final session, the learners will teach part of the unit to the entire class. The class will apply their knowledge of social studies instructional methods by assessing their peers’ presentations.

-In addition to the cultural unit, learners will be expected to complete the assigned readings in the textbooks and various journal articles. In class, the learners will then apply their knowledge of various instructional methods within a cooperative learning experience. To assure that learners have grasped the basic content, unannounced quizzes can be expected and written reflections will be submitted to the instructor.

-This course also asks the learners to complete two outside projects. One includes the completion of an oral history and the second focuses on a visit to a cultural center, including places like a museum or historical society.


On successful completion of the course, the learner will be able to:

INTASC 9      Develop her/his philosophy of social studies education


INTASC 4      Identify the knowledge base, goals, and approaches to teaching social

EDO 1             studies

INTASC 4      Define facts and concepts and the role they play in social studies

EDO 1.3         

INTASC 2      Compare various teaching strategies appropriate for teaching social studies

EDO 2.5         

INTASC 1    Plan a social studies unit and lessons using the key components

EDO 2.3

INTASC 8     Integrate and use appropriate social studies resources



Interactive Lecture/Discussion

In-class oral presentations

Group Work


Participation/Class work/Attendance - 10%

Group Project - 10%

Culture Unit--Final Copy - 20%  

Annotated Bibliography - 5%

Rationale, Indicators, and Introduction - 5%

2 Lesson Plans - 15%

Teaching One of the Two Lessons - 15%

Oral History Reflection - 10%

Reflection on Field Trip - 10%


Zarillo, James J. (2012) Teaching Elementary Social Studies: Principles and   Applications.  New Jersey: Pearson Prentice Hall.  ISBN 978-1-256-04130-6.

This is a custom text for the course and can only be purchased in the school bookstore.