A blog for Educators, Parents and Friends!!!

Come one, come all and welcome!!!

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Social Studies is more than Holidays

According to the National Council for Social Studies the purpose of social studies is to help young learners develop the ability to make informed and reasoned decisions as citizens of a culturally diverse, democratic society in an interdependent world.

Now while I do incorporate most popular holidays into the curriculum I am a firm believer that these holidays should not be the only social studies taking place. All too often we see the same holidays and activities repeated year after year without much concern for the knowledge, skills, attitudes, or values gained from them. Commercial companies have created holiday unit plans centered around holidays and stories which are more myth and legend than fact and the learning is often superficial, untrue and stereotypes groups of people at their worst. This is not to say holidays do not belong in the curriculum because I do believe there is a great deal to be gained from them. According to the theorist Vygotsky, The celebration of holidays can promote identification with family, community and nation. Holidays from many lands foster an appreciation of other cultures. The use of stories, role playing, music, visuals and discussions which clarify the meaning of virtues such as honesty, bravery and kindness can help children develop historical understandings.

This year in my classroom, I will be incorporating an around the world theme into our various learning activities. We will be learning about various countries and their traditions as well as the values which they find most important to teach to their children. We will also be incorporating a song, game or art activity to coinside with the country we are learning about to increase our culutral awareness.

So pack your bags and get ready for a learning and multicultural adventure!!!

Your Pre-K passport awaits!!!


  1. We are doing something similar this year, using an Around the World from A-Z book, stickers and passport that comes with the book.

    I think holiday units are just meant to be fun supplements through-out the year. I don't know anyone that only uses holidays for their social studies. The curriculum we use actually never mentions holidays, so if we want to include them they have to be supplemental, which is also how we are including our world unit, as a 26 week 10-20min a day supplement unit.

  2. Oh I so agree! I am making my own passports so I am kind of winging what we put into them! I welcome any ideas for what to put into them!