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“What Parts of the CCSS are Social Studies Teachers Responsible For?”

By Dave Stuart Jr.

One thing that my inner-nerd loves is the way that web analytics engines tell you how people find your site. For example, check out the WordPress stats page below: 

Through this, I get to see things like where people are being referred from and what search engine terms are pointing people to my site.

I say all this because yesterday, the title of this post was one of the search queries that pointed someone to Teaching the Core.

And it's a really good question.

Last year, a common refrain that I heard from some social studies folks was, “There are no Common Core standards for social studies. There's too much controversy, and no one can agree, so we probably won't have any for a long time.”

And the thing is, this refrain is partially true: as of today, there are no social studies content standards because this is indeed a super controversial topic. Deciding on which histories to teach has been a charged topic for decades.

However, there are Common Core State Standards for social studies — and they are the same standards I've been writing about all summer!

Check it out:

The CCSS anchor standards are for social studies, history, science, and technical subjects -- not just ELA!

So while a CCSS-ish document for social studies content has yet to be released, there is one for social studies literacy.

And to take a load off of your mind, check this out: the “literacy in the content areas” portion of the CCSS standards does not include the Speaking and Listening or the Language strands. This means you non-ELA folks only have 20 anchor standards — 10 in reading and 10 in writing.

One more super-important thing: if this is overwhelming, fear not! The key is that we simply begin trying to rock out the CCSS. If I were a social studies teacher just finding out about these expectations, I would choose 3-4 of the most croosch standards to work on for this coming school year — that's it.

If you're having trouble getting started, below are two rocking posts that offer help:

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