The Evidence Base for Social Studies: Social Studies in Elementary Education
What We Know According to Seif, there has never been a greater need for social studies programs to prepare students for the future (2003). At a time when a meaningful social studies program is crucial at every level, Seif finds data indicating a reduced emphasis on social studies during the elementary school years (2003). Evangelina Jones, Valerie Ooka and James Rodriquez go as far as to state that social studies is an invisible subject in many elementary classrooms (2001). Elementary social studies education is important as it provides students the ability to: Recognize themselves as part of history (Alleman and Brophy 1997, p. 108); Recognize and apply spatial relationships as analytical tools (Macken 2003, p. 63); Empathize with other people and appreciate their activities as intelligent adaptations to time and place (Brophy, Alleman and O’Mahony 2003, p. 40); Develop an understanding of continuity, change and chronology (Hoge 1994).