When we talk about social studies, we talk about the quadripartite of history, civics, geography and political science. These are the four elements which help us to analyze what has made us into who we are today. History involves us to take a step back and dive into the past to see the diverse factors, events and things which we had done and to learn from our mistakes and achieve better results. Civics sensitizes us about our civic duties and our fundamental rights both as resident of our country and the world. Civics studies function to provide us knowledge about the multifarious aspects of a compact and well functioning society. Geography gives us a pretty good idea about our topography, climate and vegetation; it helps us to acknowledge nature at work and how best to acclimatize to it. Last but not the least, Political science instills in students the knowledge about the philosophy of the political ideas, the concept of state, country, the constitution, economics and the study of factors which are imperative for creating a healthy state that follows the dictum of sustainable development.
At class 6 level, the main idea of introducing social studies to the youngsters is to apprise them about the working and structure of their society of which they are an invaluable part. In class 5, students have to study the environmental sciences wherein the focus is the natural environment of the world where we live and objective is to help save and preserve it as much as possible. Standard six is a marked shift from the pedagogy of the previous primary level. With the entry of the young student into the fold of middle school, introduction of social science studies becomes the apposite choice to make and step to take.
The CBSE syllabus as suggested by the NCERT is a well designed structured curriculum that involves the initiation of the triumvirate of History, Civics and Geography into the main study course of the students. The main ingredients of the course cater to teaching and building the disciplinary knowledge of the students from the very beginning: The early men, the early communities and civilizations, the trades, architecture; the diverse wildlife, climate and vegetation of India; also the rural and urban set up and administration etc.
Here is a list of the few functions that the study of social science incorporates.
- The Social Studies curriculum seeks to develop in the young people the attributes like the spirit of inquiry, critical thinking, and respect for one’s culture, value system, customs, language and heritage.
- The next function that it serves is to strengthen the feeling of international bonhomie, instill a spirit of fraternity and evoke the sentiments of looking up and maintaining peace and progress in the society.
- Social studies help to eradicate the narrow bars of mere state or country approach by broadening our perception and helping us see the international scenario as well.
- Students learn to interact and develop interpersonal relationships, also resolve issues and problems from the same.
- Children learn to appreciate the diversity and richness of the history, topography, and politics of the world at large.
- Students are equipped with the knowledge of their fundamental rights, civic duties and learn to understand the importance of living in a democratic set up like India and respect the freedom and integrity of every human being.