The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically...Intelligence plus character-that is the goal of true education.
-Martin Luther King Jr.
Social studies, as defined by the National Council for the Social Studies (2010), is “the integrated study of the social sciences and humanities to promote civic competence. The primary purpose of social studies is to help young people make informed and reasoned decisions for the public good as citizens of a culturally diverse, democratic society in an interdependent world.” Meaningful social studies instruction allows students to develop enduring understandings in the core discipline areas of civics, economics, geography, and history. Powerful social studies instruction focuses on cultivating students who are prepared to take informed action.
The overarching purpose of social studies instruction is to promote students’ development of the disciplinary and interdisciplinary skills and practices that are necessary for college, career and civic life. In addition, the Common Core’s focus on nonfiction reading requires an emphasis on higher level and historical thinking. To accomplish this goal, the focus of social studies instruction is to promote civic mindedness, problem-solving and a deeper understanding of the past and how it informs the present. Wilton Public Schools approaches instruction in social studies in a way that prepares students to identify, understand, and work to solve the challenges facing our diverse nation in an increasingly interdependent world.