Preschoolers focus on developing good character and social skills through interaction with their peers and themed storybooks. Students will be introduced to community helpers, Virginia and Tennessee Maps, holidays and traditions, and the community around us. Students are introduced to important historical figures such as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Christopher Columbus, and US Presidents. Students will participate in the school character program by implementing the Monthly Character Trait and Manner of the Week.
Students spend Junior Kindergarten exploring the world around them. They learn what it means to be part of a family, a school, and a community. Students explore a variety of vocabulary words including citizenship, rights, responsibilities, rules, leaders, country symbols, and monuments. A study of economics reveals the difference between wants versus needs and goods versus services. Map skills are introduced in junior kindergarten as students explore maps, land forms, bodies of water, globes, seasons, and Earth resources. Students also compare and contrast a variety of traditions throughout different cultures as they explore holidays and American folk heroes.
During Social Studies, kindergarten students explore how individuals belong to a community through the classroom, school, neighborhoods, state, and country. Students discuss holidays, presidents, and monuments through the use of nonfiction books and educational videos. Kindergarten also studies the similarities and differences of our country and world’s past and present. Students discover the history of Pilgrims, Native Americans, and the first settlement by participating in a special Thanksgiving feast. Through interactive lessons and projects, kindergarten students study and create their connections to the world.
First graders explore their country and community. They begin to see how the world around them works and how peoples needs have to be met in order to survive. Students begin to understand the importance of community leaders. As they explore the world around them, they are introduced to various customs and traditions as well as how different ethnic groups celebrate. They explore the past and present of our nation. First graders also enjoys exploring the ancient cultures of Mesopotamia and Egypt through the school’s Passport Program.
Second grade social studies covers units such as Our Communities, US Government, Citizenship, A Growing Nation, Working in our Community, and Celebrating our Community. We discuss travel, communication, culture, traditions, trade, and diversity in our nation. Second grade also does a study on ancient China, their culture and people.
The third grade Social Studies Units include exploration, States and Capitals, Tennessee History, and Christmas Around the World. Third grade also conducts research on past president's, the Mayflower and the Voyage to America. Third grade also research penguins during the Arctic and Antarctica Study. Third grade students additionally take part in the Passport Program, a study of the diverse culture and history of a selected country.
At the beginning of fourth grade, the regions of the United States are reviewed from third grade. The main focus for the year is Virginia. The students discover the rich history of the early settlers as well as the characteristics of the five major regions. During the Passport Program, the students delve into the life and culture of ancient Italy including the Roman Empire.
Teachers use the Our Nation textbook as a guide to social studies instruction. A heavy emphasis is placed on interactive learning, as students grasp concepts through cooperative learning, small group instruction, and project based learning. Units of study include colonization of America, The American Revolution, United States government, The Civil War, and Reconstruction. Special studies include drafting the Constitution, a classroom history museum, and studying another culture - Cuba. Enrichment includes The Grave Reviews project and a week-long trip to Washington, DC where students can experience history in the making.
Sixth Grade students study geography and the world’s cultures. The year begins by studying physical geography. As a culminating activity, students become amateur cartographers by creating their own island nation, complete with a salt dough map and written history and culture. Following this, each region of the world is investigated within the context of culture, geography and history. Through traditional and project based learning, the students gain an appreciation and understanding of the diversity of world cultures. Some highlights include the Europe in a Box project, where students create a new cereal based on a European country and its culture, history, and economy.
Seventh Grade social studies builds upon the skills and knowledge of American history acquired in the lower and intermediate schools. After a brief overview of early American history, the curriculum concentrates on the history of World War I to the present. In addition, seventh graders complete a civics course covering the dynamics of the American constitution and government.Students create a magazine to “reminisce” about the 1920s, bake using recipes from the Great Depression, and develop their own political parties and platforms.
Eighth Grade turns to an ambitious study of world history. This curriculum emphasizes early civilizations from Ancient Mesopotamia until the end of the Medieval Era. This course is designed to follow the Virginia SOL framework for 9th grade which allows the possibility of earning a high school credit. The coursework focuses on the various contributions of these civilizations to the modern world. Hands-on projects, like the mummification of a chicken, enhance the experience.