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ERIC Number: ED561635
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 123
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-3034-3075-6
Has Elementary Social Studies Instruction Become Collateral Damage of the No Child Left Behind Act?
Babini, Kathleen Callanan
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, Northeastern University
Public schools stress the need for students to become informed and engaged citizens, however social studies instruction is becoming marginalized in many elementary schools today, the very area where they learn citizenship and about the world around them. This study seeks to: understand the reason for the loss of instructional time for social studies, analyze the role of integrated curriculum and identify value placed on elementary social studies education. This is a qualitative case study based upon interviews, document review and field observations. The data gathered and analyzed will address the research question, as well as, the intellectual and practical goals of the study. The main research question, "How do elementary classroom teachers, given the contemporary restraints of the No Child Left Behind Act, negotiate content and pedagogy in elementary social studies at two schools?" focuses on the teaching and learning of elementary social studies. Research was conducted in two elementary schools in the same school district, focusing on grades one, three and five. Teachers and principals were interviewed; curriculum documents, including the districts time allotment policy reviewed, and field observations of social studies content visibly displayed in classrooms and common areas. The three sources allowed for the triangulation of data to be analyzed for patterns or trends. The data demonstrated a marginalization of elementary social studies instruction, resulting from a reduction of time for the subject area instruction. While the content itself was valued by teachers and administrators, other tested content areas were given priority in the daily schedule. The main factor reported for the reduction in time for social studies was the mandated state testing program which resulted from the federal No Child Left Behind Act (2001). Through the use of integrating social studies into the literacy block, social studies topics were often read about, but the tasks and activities students were engaged in were to improve literacy skills, not teach social studies content or skills. The goal of social studies education is the development of tomorrow's citizens. This can only be done through thoughtful and meaningful social studies education. This research was designed to try and understand if that is taking place in the elementary classrooms in this district and how it is valued by teachers and principals. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Elementary Education; Grade 1; Primary Education; Early Childhood Education; Grade 3; Grade 5; Intermediate Grades; Middle Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: No Child Left Behind Act 2001