Social Studies Curriculum
In early 2018, DESE introduced new MA History and Social Science Framework. This was adopted in June of 2018, and we have begun work to align our courses with the new standards and practices at each grade level PK-12. MA Legislation requiring Civics projects of students in 8th Grade and in High School to support the efforts of fostering Civic learning and action by students were also put into place in November 2018. Civics projects are being designed as part of the new 8th Grade Civics course running this year, and NHS faculty will develop a project as we re-align our course sequence over the next two years.
Nantucket Elementary School
Nantucket Elementary School use interdisciplinary units to address the standards and practices of History and Social Science. We are working to transition to the new framework.
Pre-Kindergarten: Building a Foundation for Living, Learning, and Working Together
Students are introduced to four major fields of social studies: civics (respecting one another, cooperating, and obeying appropriate rules); geography (understanding connections between places and people); history (recalling experiences); and economics (understanding working, buying, selling and trading things).
Kindergarten: Many Roles in Living, Learning, and Working Together
Students learn about classroom democracy, respect for one another, local geography, roles of people, national, state, and community traditions, and economics in the context of work and money.
Grade 1: Leadership, Cooperation, Unity, and Diversity
Students learn about leadership on many levels, the meaning of citizenship, and map types. They explore how the concepts of unity and diversity, respect for differences, and respect of self shape life in the United States, and how people make choices about purchasing goods and services and saving resources.
Grade 2: Global Geography: Places and Peoples, Cultures and Resources
Students learn about global geography, looking at reasons why people settle in particular places, why they migrate, how they bring culture with them, and how they earn a living
Nantucket Intermediate School
Nantucket Intermediate School is currently working on adapting their curriculum to align with the new History and Social Science Standards. We are intentionally planning for effective connections to Units of Study for Reading and Writing where possible.
Grade 3: Massachusetts, Home to Many Different People
Students study Massachusetts and New England, beginning with their own city or town. They explore interactions among Native Peoples, European settlers and Africans, and learn about the Massachusetts people who led the American Revolution. The standards introduce students to the founding documents of Massachusetts and United States so that they may begin to discuss and apply ideas about self-government as they help develop codes of classroom rules, rights, and responsibilities.
Grade 4: North American Geography and Peoples
Students learn about North America (Canada, Mexico, and the United States) and its peoples from a geographic perspective. They learn about ancient civilizations on the continent and early European exploration as they expand map reading, mapmaking, and geographic reasoning skills introduced in grades 2 and 3. They apply concepts of how geography affects human settlement and resource use, and how the westward expansion of the United States created a modern nation of 50 states and 16 territories.
Grade 5: United States History to the Civil War and the Modern Civil Rights Movement
Building on their knowledge of North American geography and peoples, students learn more about the history of the colonies, the American Revolution, the development of the Constitution, Bill of Rights, the early Republic, and the westward expansion of the United States. They study the sectional conflicts over slavery that led to the Civil War and the long struggle in the 19th and 20th centuries for civil rights for all.
Cyrus Peirce Middle School
Cyrus Peirce Social Studies Teachers responded immediately to the shift in Social Science Standards. Through structured work in the school year and summer, they have revised their curricula to align with the new standards for the start of the 2018-2019 school year.
Grades 6 and 7: World Geography and Ancient Civilizations I and II
Sixth grade students examine how the perspectives of political science, economics, geography, history, and archaeology apply to the study of regions and countries. They study the development of prehistoric societies and then focus on area studies of Western Asia, the Middle East, North Africa, Sub-Saharan Africa, and Central America, the Caribbean Islands, and South America. Grade 7 examines the physical and political geography and ancient societies of South and East Asia, Oceania, and Europe and concludes with a study of government in Greece and Rome, which serves as a prelude to the study of civics in grade 8.
Grade 8: United States and Massachusetts Government and Civic Life
Students study the roots and foundations of democratic government through primary documents such as the United States and Massachusetts Constitutions, how and why government institutions developed, how government evolves through legislation and court decisions, and how individuals exercise their rights and civic responsibilities to maintain a healthy democracy in the nation and the Commonwealth.
Nantucket High School
The Nantucket High School History Department endeavors to instill in students a belief in the value of lifelong learning. They further aim to teach students to function as informed citizens, able to navigate their way in an increasingly complex and diverse world. Their core curricululm, World and US History, emphasizes the development of democratic ideals. Electives, such as World Religions, Psychology, Sociology, and Contemporary Issues, further explores the understanding of government and expansion of social knowledge. We have recently developed a sequence of courses designed to align us with the new DESE Fameworks.