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Philosophy

Philosophy

The Kenai Peninsula Borough School District (KPBSD) Social Studies Curriculum, based on the Alaska State Standards (2000), is integrative and conceptual in nature. It is designed to integrate the major strands of social studies: geography, government, history, economics, and culture while enhancing writing and reading skills. In addition, technology and research provide the foundation for acquiring knowledge, skills, and content. The intent is that students will be provided with multiple opportunities for rich experiences and in-depth study as they progress through the grades. Problem solving, collaboration, and civic responsibility are emphasized throughout the curriculum.

Definition
 The National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS) defines social studies as follows: “Social Studies is the integrated study of the social sciences and humanities to promote civic competence. Within the school program, social studies provides coordinated, systematic study drawing upon such disciplines as anthropology, archeology, economics, geography, history, law, philosophy, political science, psychology, religion, and sociology, as well as appropriate content from the humanities, mathematics, and natural sciences. The primary purpose of social studies is to help young people develop the ability to make informed and reasoned decisions for the public good as citizens of a culturally diverse, democratic society in an interdependent world.” (Expectations of Excellence: Curriculum Standards for Social Studies, 1994, Washington, D.C.)

Civic Participation This curriculum document emphasizes civic participation, the opportunity to become involved in various aspects of the community, at all grade levels with culminating efforts coming in the high school years. Each individual high school site will develop its own program; however, all programs are to include a minimum of 10 hours, maximum of 50 hours of civic participation. The individual site’s program may contain a menu of options, fitting the unique and individual learning styles and needs of each community’s students. Furthermore, this civic participation will be part of a specific class, with the grade’s weight for this participation not exceeding 25% of the student’s total grade in the class.

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