Social Studies Curriculum Overview
Elementary School Course Offerings
Chairperson: Joelle Keats
The North Allegheny Elementary Social Studies Curriculum utilizes a cohesive spiraling curriculum that promotes a diverse and rich understanding of the history, culture, economics, and geography of the students' community, state, nation, and world. It includes skill-building in literacy, the use of maps and globes, and interpreting historical and current events.
Kindergarten students in North Allegheny will utilize Houghton Mifflin Harcourt’s The World Around Us. Students are introduced to the basic elements of social studies with emphasis on their relationships with their peers, their school, their families, community, and the immediate world around them. Topics include friendship, family, basic geography skills using maps and globes, holidays, national and local historical figures or importance, and school and community rules.
The Families Living and Working Together text published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt will be used at the first grade level. Students continue to study the basic elements of social studies with emphasis on their relationships with their peers, their school, their families, community, and the immediate world around them. Topics include friendship, family, basic geography skills using maps and globes, holidays, national and local historical figures or importance, and school and community rules
Second grade students will use Houghton Mifflin Harcourt’s Neighborhoods and Communities. This curriculum expands the students' study of social studies into their local communities and includes study of types of communities such as urban, rural, and suburban, as well as local government, work, and basic economic principles and civic education. Map and globe skill-building is expanded to the nation and the continent, and there is continued emphasis on holidays, and local and national historical figures of importance
Third grade students will use Communities Near and Far published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. The students' study of their world is expanded from the community to the state level. Pennsylvania groups, history, government, and economy are the focus of the third grade curriculum, with more in-depth study of the people, events, and places that shaped our current local and state history and landscape. Students are also introduced to the three branches of the federal government and the roles that each branch plays. Map, globe, and geography skills continue to be expanded and refined during this year of study.
The American States and Regions text published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt is used by fourth grade students. The curriculum continues to spiral outward as students explore the geography, culture, economics, and government of the United States. Students study the five major regions of the United States from a geographic, historical, and economic perspective while broadening their map and globe competencies. There is also increased emphasis placed on interpretation of current events, both nationally and internationally.
Fifth grade students will use Houghton Mifflin Harcourt’s text The United States: Beginnings through the Civil War. The elementary curriculum culminates with an in-depth study of early American history, from its origins to 1783. The curriculum weaves the study of current events and Pennsylvania history into the U.S. history curriculum whose major topics include: the early explorers, the colonial period, the Revolutionary War, and the framing of the Constitution and development of the Bill of Rights. Students leave fifth grade poised to begin concurrent studies of World and U.S. History, geography, culture, government, and economics.