Alabama reforms filled with STW language
From: "Bob & Barbara Tennison"
Subject: Alabama - Education
Date sent: Sun, 4 Jan 1998 22:41:22 -0800
I have been playing around on the net again, looking at curriculum from
different states. I went into Alabama's page because they are allegedly
"not" doing the things that we in Oregon are doing. I also looked because I
was born and raised in the Heart of Dixie and graduated from high school in
Well guess what I discovered. Alabama IS doing exactly what Oregon is doing
but the difference is that parents and teachers probably don't know it. I
looked at and read the 183 page "draft" document titled, "Alabama course of
Study - Social Studies - 1998 and I found the common OBE/STW/America's
Choice language embedded throughout. go figure.
Following are exact passages, quotes and selected lines from the draft
Social Studies document.
page 7 - Consistent with the reform movement, the Alabama Course of Social
Study: Social Studies provides Alabama's public school students the
opportunity to experience a curriculum that reflects the essence of reform.
page 7 - American constitutional democracy
page 7 - Students are prepared to develop the knowledge, skills, and
attitudes needed to enter the working world of the 21st Century.
page 9 - If students are to function as informed and productive citizens,
they must be taught to think critically and creatively.
page 9 - A multicultural and/or global perspective must emerge.
page 12 - Content standards are statements that define what students should
know and be able to do.
page 12 - Each content standard contains a STEM that completes the phrase,
page 14 - The developmentally appropriate Kindergarten program is based on
an outgrowth of children's own life experiences.
page 14 - The goal of civic responsibility is realized at the K-4 level as
students develop civic, cultural, historical, economic and environmental
page 14 - Kindergarten students learn best when information is presented in
a thematic, interdisciplinary approach with emphasis on flexibility,
attention to individual learning styles.
page 14 - First graders learn best through using a thematic approach
involving active manipulation and exploration of their environment as they
construct understanding of relationships among objects, people, and events.
page 14 - The overall goals of the first grade curriculum are to increase
students' knowledge of their human and physical worlds and to increase their
appreciation for different people and different ways of life.
Note: Now I would have thought the overall goal of first grade would be
to ensure that students were learning how to read, write and compute
mathematically. silly old fashioned me.
page 15 - relevant literature, cooperative groupings,and fine arts combined
into a thematic approach
page 49 - (A stem) Realize they are both inheritors and shapers in the
progression of human life in our changing world.
page 49 - Students realize that the strength of the American experience is
the opportunity for the inclusion of all groups into American society.
page 77 - This section focuses on the foundation and organization of
democracy in the United States.
Note: much like Oregon, the Alabama state department of education
doesn't know what form of government we have in the United States. We DON'T
live in a democracy!!!
page 77 - This component lays the groundwork for developing knowledge,
skills, and behaviors needed for active, responsible participation at the
community, state, and national levels.
Note: NOT if they teach the kids democracy rather than representative
government in a republic.
page 78 - Students explore the political process, the role of civic leaders,
and the value of contributing to the general welfare and betterment of
page 83 - The goal of the seventh grade geography curriculum is to develop a
geographically informed student who is able to appreciate the interdependent
world in which we live and to apply the spatial viewpoint to life
page 84 - The curriculum focuses on developing five geographic skills that
emphasize higher order thinking.
page 84 - The study of geography lends itself to the integration of
technology through the use of spatial databases, Internet resources, census
information, remotely sensed imagery, and virtual maps including daily
weather maps on television.
page 84 - Teachers should also consider the interdisciplinary nature of
geography and incorporate subjects, such as math, earth science, and
language arts into the instructional process to the extent that even team
teaching is a possibility.
page 85 - People who approach knowing and doing with a habit of inquiring
about whereness possess a spatial perspective.
I will stop at page 85 as I think you get the message. Alabama is not
following Oregon down the same old reform path, at least not publicly, but
on paper and through their curriculum they are doing exactly what Oregon has
done since 1991,
I might add that a lot of the Social Studies curriculum is terrific, if they
would only cut the crap and teach the subject. There is also an extensive
STW piece at the end of the course that falls under economic studies. I'll
post it later and separately as it is quite lengthy.
Bob & Barbara Tennison
78612 Halderman Rd.
Cottage Grove, OR 97424-9709
EDUCATION CONSUMERS CLEARINGHOUSE