Monday, September 17, 2012

The World is Disappearing

I have to say that the creator of this map did a fairly decent job of representing the New Yorker’s point of view. New York is a great city with much to offer, but every time I hear the phrase “flyover state,” I can’t help but cringe a little.

This year I’m beginning my curriculum with a geography unit. Over the past few years it’s become blindingly apparent that our students have no clue about the area of study in general, let alone its specifics. Few can even tell the difference between a city, state, and country, let alone name them. I’d wonder what the heck their social studies teachers have been doing for the past eight years, but I know already- basically nothing, because they haven’t really had social studies.

Since the beginning of the standards movement, the number of minutes devoted to social studies has taken a huge dive. In many elementary schools the only subjects considered important are English and math, with some lip service being paid to science.

Take that and toss in a healthy dose the New York attitude- many of my students might as well be taking U.S. history on the moon.

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