Social Studies

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  • This is the breaking point for most people between “social studies” and “historical” approaches to teaching about the world. It’s a crass generalization, but sometimes are debates really are that crass. Do we need to “know where we came from,” as Herodotus suggested, or do we need to “value their experience” as Lao Tzu urged, and teach our students to take us where they want to go?
  • Another deep divide in the global education field, this one often reflected between practitioners in the field who share, and want to share, a deep appreciation for others’ cultures, and policy makers who need to defend the “payoff” to their legislatures, and ultimately, to their tax-payers.
  • And, at least here in America but probably elsewhere around the globe, the fact that history was founded as a disciplinary support for 19 th century nationalism puts us all on the horns of a dilemma I’ll touch on in more detail later, but have to admit here (especially if you work in a “purple state” like mine!). Should we be teaching our students about America so they can use those values to influence the world, or should we teach them about the world so that those values can influence America? This, in and of itself, may prevent us from EVER adopting national history standards again.
  • The Asia Society’s International Studies Schools Network (ISSN) first took up this challenge in conversations regarding the pioneering work of Robert C. Hanvey. Written in the late 1970s, Hanvey’s description of the “global perspectives” required of students and public education initiatives has proven remarkably prescient. However, in addressing “global perspective” as a “blend of many things, noting that any given individual may be rich in certain elements though lacking in others,” Hanvey preserved a measure of student-centered flexibility that is rare by contemporary standards. We recognize that the student’s ability to move within networks will be far more important than our ability to describe them as an isolated group of scholars. That’s why, with Hanvey (2) we stress that “[d]iversified talents and inclinations [are to] be encouraged and standardized educational effects are not required.” Where the educational systems of the 20 th century sought to improve the human condition by building institutional capacity  (school systems, standardized curricula and measurable outcomes) at the state and national level to supplement or even challenge the impact of “informal socialization” with “formal education,” the frameworks we propose seek to build human capacity   in the students themselves, through inquiry-based learning across these dynamic networks. Shifting the focus of students’ experience from being subject to their lessons to becoming the agent of their own education will empower them to challenge the institutions of informal socialization and their formal education as their changing futures demand, and to act outside of the contexts of certainty in an ever-changing world. Our students will then be capable of working with us as we constantly renew the foundations of education into the future . Hanvey’s model is set forth in two publications. The first, “An Attainable Global Perspective,” was published in 1976 with assistance from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Center for Teaching International Relations at the University of Denver. The second, shorter version, appeared as “An Attainable Global Perspective” Theory into Practice , Vol. 21, No. 3 “Global Education” (Summer 1982): pp. 162-167. Both articles were a part of the early conversations leading to these model considerations. 
  • The idea of producing a universal educational system has deep roots in the Enlightenment, and persists today in the UN’s Millennium Development Goal 2, and the Education for All Initiative on which MDG 2 is predicated. Foucault tracks the “order of things” in the 18 th and 19 th century, but the origin of the idea for the quest goes to GE Lessing whose book of that title has had a deep influence on subsequent notions of the state obligation to public education (even though his was a highly theological version). We know the 20 th century project a lot more intimately, as we all grew up in its factory schools, and attended its well disciplined yet productivity focused research universities. We also know both sides of this system, well enough, to know that there’s a need for reform.
  • We all agreed we didn’t need another comprehensive curriculum, another system, but instead wanted ONLY a series of guidelines, or a framework in which we, and our students, could collaborate . Shifting the focus of students’ experience from being subject to their lessons to becoming the agent of their own education will empower them to challenge the institutions of informal socialization and their formal education as their changing futures demand, and to act outside of the contexts of certainty in an ever-changing world. Our students will then be capable of working with us as we constantly renew the foundations of education into the future
  • History or social studies becomes history AS social studies. It’s not about preparation, it’s about participation.
  • Most recently the theory of developmental “cosmopolitan circles” has been articulated by Martha Nussbaum in her 1996 essay and book, “For Love of Country.” This caused a big splash (you’ll see the pun later), not for the developmental theory, but for Nussbaum’s decision to follow Kant, and the Stoics, in arguing that there was indeed a “global” sphere in which our “common humanity” offered the building blocks for a universal moral framework. My point in raising this here, is that the notion of “cosmopolitan circles” is SO deeply ingrained that it rushes to the fore, consciously or not, in nearly EVERY attempt to think about global education.
  • Source: MCA Planning and Urban Design. <http://www.mcaplan.co.za/projects/> Act Global to Live Local 20 July 2006 This paper turns the old adage, "Think Global, Act Local" on its head. It evaluates the different levels of action for sustainability - from the local through to the global. It argues that at a local, household, building, even neighbourhood, level, the technology, knowledge and means exist to create sustainable communities. Moreover, it argues that living and working in this paradigm is a far more effective means of creating truly democratic (equitable) and employed (economically viable) societies., Related Downloads: (right click and select "save target as" to download) Act Global to Live Local  [114.44KB]
  • This image of the world’s auto-industry, globalized, suggests just how complex things really are.
  • An intelligence community network analysis snapshot.
  • Or like this…. After reviewing all the standards applicable to all ISSN schools in 9 states, we quickly realized that we were not going to get a neat and tidy scope and sequence when we couldn’t even get agreement on what World History should be, or look like, OR WHEN World History should happen, or even WHO should get World History.
  • There’s an old tradition, connected to the “old diplomacy” of the European states’ system that “going global” is for the “best and the brightest, something only those who come from the right families and the right schools have a right to. This tradition was was not assailed directly in the US State Department until a lawsuit in the late 1990s provoked Secretary Powell’s diversity initiative in the mid 2000s, prior to which DoS and many other federal foreign policy institutions were, as a colleague of mine used to say, “pale, male, and Yale.”
  • Those old Stoic ripples….
  • And just how old of a tradition is it?
  • Hegel’s Philosophy of Right posited that no higher polity can exist beyond the national state, as the national state is the summary statement of a people’s values and cultures, AND national identity can only make sense (as with any identity) in OPPOSITION to an OTHER. So, no global “people,” a point even the UN accepts when it declared “We the Peoples….” Kant’s “Toward a Universal History with a Cosmopolitan Intent” was in part the “foolishness” that Hegel was reacting too (at least in his opinion). By seeking to ground a history of the world in the metaphysics of his Categorical Imperative (treat no one as other than and end unto themselves).
  • This is a fundamentally Western POLITICAL dilemma, growing out of the irreconcilable tensions inherent between the city states of the Classical Age and the Pahellenism that followed it. It is a Greek question with a specific historical context, and not the sort of “absolute” proposed by most debates regarding “going Global.”
  • Forced into this dilemma we are forced into a “zero sum” game in which it’s us or them, self vs. other, and national order vs. the anarchy of the international system. The essence of POLITICS is at issue here (Friend/Enemy) rather than the essence of what politics is supposed to resolve: how do we live together? The latter is a SOCIAL question that CAN be answered politically, but doesn’t need to be.
  • These are the specific “social” skills we thought our students needed in order to live together. They are the HSS versions of AS/ISSN’s “Global Competencies,” Investigate the World, Recognize Perspective, Communicate Ideas, and Take Action. We wanted to break “Investigate” into asking good, purposeful questions, and using sources of evidence to answer them. We’re historians, after all! So, we ended up with five. Note, that for historians and social studies teacher, ARGUMENT is a POSITIVE THING, as it CONNOTES PERSUASIVE COMMUNICATION.
  • Perspective is crucially important to our ISSN POs, and yet we always came back to that problematic corollary: whose perspective to teach. Take a regional issue like immigration. Do you teach the American perspective (if there is just ONE), the Mexican perspective (again, if there is just one), the position taken by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights? If you’re going to “go global,” these issues come up, and if you’re going to go global in 9 states, you’re going to get different answers.
  • Friedman calls this a “flattening world” which is partly correct, but only if we admit that what is being flattened is not only competitive advantage, but also the political hierarchies that have traditionally MEDIATED the world for us. Today’s kids are more “extraordinary and plenipotentiary” than any 18 th century ambassador might have dreamed!
  • We worked from Robert Hanvey’s “An Attainable Global Perspective,” (1976) to get these five contexts. REFER TO THESE IF NECESSARY. Theoretically, it matters where a student starts, and that starting point is best appreciated by the student and those interacting with the student on a emerging level. By contrast, to assume a starting point, and to build upon that, is to focus on institutional requirements and outcomes rather than genuine student needs and opportunities. Practically, it is also highly unlikely that any set of standards would be applicable in more than a few settings, given the prior existence of numerous other standards on local, state, and national levels, not to mention the important prior knowledge regarding the world that each student brings to the classroom. The model here proposed is offered as a way to view a variety of standards with an eye toward realizing student competencies necessary to a global perspective, not as a set of lesson plan requirements for developing them per se. As a result, the model may serve as a lens to help us identify competencies when we see them in action, and may serve to facilitate thinking about existing standards on a case-by-case basis. Regardless, the question is NOT how well the model proposed reflects the world we know as adults, but rather how well the proposed model allows students to reflect upon the world as they find it.
  • Because this is a model for skills development in specific contexts rather than, say, cognitive or moral development objectively speaking, it is important to note that we are not implying a developmental or moral hierarchy among students. Indeed, what we’re describing is different “disciplines of investigating the world: comparative politics, international relations, and transnational relations, for example, and it would be wrong to put those in a cognitive hierarchy. Hanvey’s “global perspectives” offer a developmental model of their own (12), but we do not insist on applying it. See also: Jean Piaget, The Construction of Reality in the Child (1954); Lawrence Kohlberg, Philosophy of Moral Development (1981) and Psychology of Moral Development (1984) and/or Carol Gilligan, In a Different Voice: Psychological Theory and Women’s Development (1982); Eleanor Duckworth, The Having of Wonderful Ideas and Other Essays (1987) and in particular “The Reality to Which Each Belongs” (2005); and the work of James Banks and his colleagues at the University of Washington, Principles and Concepts for Educating Citizens in a Global Age (2005) Some students may, for any number of reasons, move through several of these inquiry-contexts very quickly without fully mastering the competencies, while others will prefer to come to rest in a particular inquiry-context while applying the competencies in a more reliable or sophisticated manner. In the end, a student at any point in this framework will have the capacity to appreciate a “global perspective,” and while it may be tempting to look at the attainment of “transcendent expertise” as the true definition of a “global perspective,” no progressive or teleological sense of sophistication is required. Indeed, by adding collaboration as a competency for consideration, this framework allows constructivist interpretations by which we might understand why a student (or even an institution) chooses to embrace a particular form of global perspective, while another does not.  
  • NO, an A student is not simply the one who is capable of realizing “transcendent implications”
  • As Wineburg notes in “Thinking History and Other Unnatural Acts,” Ch. 2, we don’t need to teach history as political studies, but can envision the study of history as a question of the social operations an individual can make when they “do history” ( compare, relate, integrate, etc .). Again, Wineburg is powerful here, but not also how this helps prepare students for college, as the categories of social analysis are now reflective of those actually used to study the world: comparative politics, international relations , trans national studies, etc.
  • As Wineburg notes in “Thinking History and Other Unnatural Acts,” Ch. 2, the traditional Scope and Sequence of Western Civ, American, and then Government/Econ the legacy of post-Civil War debates in the AHA about how to get ALL Americans to see American history as the “exceptional” realization of Western Civilization, thus healing the North/South divide. Today, World (still, too often, just Western Civ) history is still presumed to be necessary to understand what it means to be an American. It will still be a hotly debated question, but for us, the point is moot.
  • Now think of it as a series of Frameworks, each focused not by geopolitical categories, but by “Experiences” in contexts, and within these “historic” contexts, an iteration of the various “perspective contexts.”
  • EAH III = RELATING EWH I = EMERGING EWH III = RELATING EWH IV = INTEGRATING
  • And learning experiences that look like this…
  • Or this…
  • Social Studies

    1. 2. Rethinking Developmental Frameworks for the Teaching of History as Social Studies It’s Social Studies, so it Must be Global, Right? Dr. Timothy R.W. Kubik, Kubik Perspectives, LLC Asia Society Partnership for Global Learning, July 9, 2010 Senior History/Social Studies Consultant to AS/ISSN With thanks to Jennifer Stephan Kapral (IHSS) Steve Magadance (ISA) Gerardo Munoz (DCIS) Don Profitt (ISSN Senior Arts Consultant) Dave Tabano (DCIS) Edward Tierney (AGS) Katie Willett (AIS/IHS )
    2. 3. Don’t be so sure…
    3. 4. As we go through the next few slides… … use your handout to jot down your initial response to the questions that follow. Once we’ve discussed them a bit, flip the handout and jot down when your perspective changes.
    4. 5. How well do you know your state standards?
    5. 6. Use your handout to jot down your initial response.
    6. 7. <ul><li>How “global” are they? </li></ul><ul><li>Do they help students find their way in today’s world? </li></ul><ul><li>Do they help students find their way to today’s world? </li></ul>
    7. 8. Use your handout to jot down your initial response.
    8. 9. <ul><li>How are they “global”? </li></ul><ul><li>Do they stress diversity and multiculturalism? </li></ul><ul><li>Do they stress employable skills for a single global market? </li></ul>
    9. 10. Use your handout to jot down your initial response.
    10. 11. Do they connect the world to America? Do they connect America to the world? and then, how are WE “global”?
    11. 12. Use your handout to jot down your initial response.
    12. 13. We asked a lot of the these questions as we sat around thinking about teaching a “global” history… … but we didn’t like the image we were getting, here… Our students should be the agents of their history, not subjects to our history .
    13. 14. <ul><li>the educational leaders of the 18 th and 19 th century sought to “educate the human race” by building it’s knowledge base (encyclopedias and disciplines) </li></ul><ul><li>the educational leaders of the 20 th century sought to improve the human condition by building institutional capacity  (school and university systems, standardized curricula with measurable outcomes) </li></ul>We’ve been there, before…
    14. 15. The frameworks we propose seek to build human capacity   in the students themselves.   We didn’t want to end up where we started… We wanted to start and end with our students.
    15. 16. “… [wa]s not merely to revitalize education in a way that will empower our students to improve upon the human condition once they leave our classrooms, but also to empower our students to perpetually revitalize education  before they leave our classrooms. To do this , they must engage the process of history where they are, rather than wait until they have learned the process of history. ” Our Challenge…
    16. 17. Use your handout to jot down your initial response.
    17. 18. So, we began, like most, with the assumption that you teach the world this way….
    18. 19. … and that our scope and sequence might look something like this, when we were done:
    19. 20. But it doesn’t and, likely, it can’t. The “world” doesn’t fit into neat analytical patterns like that. It looks more like, well, this…
    20. 21. Or this… Or even, like…
    21. 23. And as a scope and sequence, it feels a lot more like this… With only a select few ever making it to “ going Global” Local Regional Global
    22. 24. <ul><li>ISSN schools face a unique challenge, if not a unique choice: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Too standard, or not too standard? That is the question.” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>It’s not a choice of one or the other, but rather, a choice of where your classroom, and your school, lie on a continuum… </li></ul>
    23. 25. Use your handout to note whether your perspective is changing….
    24. 26. Our “Essential Question” became: Is “local, regional, global” a human developmental category, basically the way we grow up, or just a “traditional” way of “going global?”
    25. 28. Use your handout to note whether your perspective is changing….
    26. 29. <ul><li>To us, “local, regional, global” was more “governmental studies” than “social studies.” </li></ul><ul><li>Many of the standards we worked with assumed two things, and a third corollary: </li></ul><ul><li>That (thanks to Hegel) global governance is a (thankfully?) unattainable possibility; </li></ul><ul><li>That (thanks to Kant) ‘cosmopolitanism’ is ONLY a moral/affective possibility. </li></ul>
    27. 30. The corollary? Political allegiance and the morality of humanity are in essential and irresolvable conflict. EITHER you are a patriotic nationalist and teach national values as values to which the world should aspire; OR you are a good human being who adheres to universal values to which nations should aspire.
    28. 31. This has some deep implications… … for writing curriculum that our teachers can use… … and for the historical agency of our students.
    29. 32. Use your handout to note whether your perspective is changing…
    30. 33. We wanted students to be able to know and do these things… Question: The student is able to formulate purposeful hypotheses and/or questions   Evidence: The student is able to locate and to situate relevant evidence and/or source materials Argument: The student is able to construct an argument based on evidence Perspective: The student is able to explore evidence and/or arguments from a perspective other than his or her own Implications: The student is able propose ethical actions and to see and consider the consequences of answering his or her question one way or the other.  
    31. 34. But the local/regional/global framework kept getting in the way as we moved forward, especially when it came to perspective…
    32. 35. Global Our students are experiencing the world much more “immediately”…. The old political boundaries no longer separate, but collapse or flatten out into new social spaces. Regional Local
    33. 36. So, we decided to CHANGE THE CONTEXT: Emerging: engaged in questions relating to understanding not yet consciously framed by social categories such as nationality, historical context, race, gender or religion (i.e., fact collection). Comparing: engaged in questions comparing emergent facts from the perspective of several social categories (i.e., we see “it” this way, they see “it” that way). Relating: engaged in questions that seek relationships emergent facts share across social categories (i.e., though different, these contrasting views have this in common). Integrating: engaged in questions regarding how comparisons and relationships of emergent facts across social categories might be connected to develop new understandings (i.e., a richer, more nuanced factual definition is now possible). Transcending: engaged in questions that involve moving beyond previous understandings in order to address a range of social issues. (i.e., now that we know this, it changes the way we’d tackle the problem of malnutrition.)  
    34. 37. Some tell us this feels like Bloom’s Taxonomy… … but there are important differences. Transcending? Integrating? Relating? Comparing? Emerging?
    35. 38. <ul><li>the question the becomes NOT how well the model proposed reflects the world we know as adults (i.e, local, regional, global), </li></ul><ul><li>but rather how well the proposed model allows students to engage the world as they find it (i.e., are they comparing cultures, seeing relationships, integrating new ideas into their understanding?). </li></ul>Putting it All Together: The Conceptual Framework
    36. 39. Use your handout to note whether your perspective is changing….
    37. 40. We ended, after all, with the end in mind: a student who can think about the world, socially, in very distinct, disciplined ways.
    38. 41. Use your handout to note whether your perspective is changing….
    39. 42. Developmental Contexts as a Framework: Whether you start local or national, or start global, the ultimate question becomes, “How do I find MY place in the world?” Do students compare, relate, integrate…?
    40. 43. The Conceptual Framework as Course Framework Remember this?
    41. 44. ISSN HSS Course Frameworks Village Voices 9 th Grade Literacy Course Framework (Judy Conk with the AS/ISSN Literacy Team) Experiences in American History Course Framework (with the full ISSN HSS Development Team) Experiences in World History Course Framework (with the full ISSN HSS Development Team) Civic Engagements Course Framework (Tim Kubik, AS/ISSN) Global Engagements Course Framework (with Jennifer Stephan Kapral, IHSS and Katie Willett, AIS/HIS)
    42. 45. ISSN HSS Units EAH Unit III , Nations within America /”Troubling News Civil Disobedience Task (with Katie Willett, AIS/IHS) EWH Unit I , Emerging Histories /Historic Families Task (with Evan Meyers, HS4LD) EWH Unit III , Cultural Exchanges /Columbus Debate Task EWH Unit IV, A World Culture? /Colonize(r/d) Task
    43. 48. Is your head spinning yet? Your world turned, upside down?
    44. 49. At your tables, compare your new perspectives among yourselves for five minutes…
    45. 50. … and now we’ll share those perspectives you found in common.
    46. 51. <ul><ul><li>W: www.kubikperspectives.com </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>E: [email_address] </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>C: 720.219.0268 </li></ul></ul>
    47. 52. Visit us on the web at: www.AsiaSociety.org/Education

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