Students in kindergarten through third grade are introduced to a study of history, geography, civics, and economics. Students learn basic concepts of chronological time, physical and human geography, citizenship education, and economic choices. The content studied in the fourth, fifth, and sixth grades are divided into three distinctly different curriculums, including Virginia Studies, World History, and United States History to 1865. The curriculum taught in FCPS aligns with the Virginia Standards of Learning (SOL).
During their first year in school, students learn basic concepts related to history, patriotism, national symbols, good citizenship, geographic location, economics, and the importance of following rules and respecting the rights and property of other people. The social studies standards, benchmarks, and indicators provide students with a framework for laying the foundation for lifelong learning in history, geography, civics, and economics.
The standards for first grade students include an introduction to the lives of American leaders and their contributions to the United States. Students recognize basic map symbols and construct a simple map of a familiar area. The students study the economic concepts of goods and services, consumers and producers, and making economic choices. Students learn to apply the traits of a good citizen and recognize that communities in Virginia have local governments and include people who have diverse ethnic origins, customs, and traditions, who make contributions to their communities, and who are united as Americans by common principles. The information learned in first grade will be assessed by a cumulative test administered at the end of third grade.
Students study individuals who have made significant contributions to the United States and its history. They study three American Indian tribes from three regions (the Eastern Woodlands, Plains, and Southwest) to understand how groups adapt to their environment and meet basic needs in different ways. Students learn about early European explorers who came to America. They study the ancient empire of Mali and the contemporary culture of Mexico. The FCPS second grade curriculum follows a sequence that is different from the Curriculum Framework listed on the Virginia Department of Education website. All content in the Virginia SOL is taught by the end of third grade when students take the SOL test. The Year at a Glance document outlines the curriculum sequence taught in FCPS. The information learned in second grade will be assessed by a cumulative test administered at the end of third grade.
Students learn about the cultures of the ancient civilizations of Egypt, China, Greece, and Rome. The biographies of significant Americans are studied. Geography skills and economic concepts are also taught. The FCPS third grade curriculum follows a sequence that is different from the Curriculum Framework listed on the Virginia Department of Education website. All K-3 content in the Virginia SOL is taught by the end of third grade when students take the SOL test. The Year at a Glance document outlines the curriculum sequence taught in FCPS.
The Standards of Learning are an important part of Virginia’s efforts to provide challenging educational programs in the public schools. At the end of the third grade, students participate in SOL testing for the first time, allowing them the opportunity to show the array of knowledge and skills they have developed. The information learned in kindergarten, first, second, and third grades will be assessed in a cumulative SOL test.
Students study Virginians who have made significant contributions to the United States and its history. They learn about the state of Virginia from 1607 to the present. Students acquire an understanding of how different cultures, politics, geography, and economics influenced and contributed to the development and growth of Virginia. The grade four curriculum also includes a study of Fairfax County. There is an end of course SOL test for fourth grade students.
The Fairfax County Public Schools Grade 5 Social Studies Program of Studies standards are an extension beyond the Virginia Standards of Learning. The curriculum requires students to demonstrate historical and geographic understanding of various ancient, classical, and post-classical civilizations. In fifth grade, students also work on the Global Awareness Technology Project by selecting a question to research, developing the answers to that question into a project, and then communicating and sharing the project through technology.
Teachers choose from several units of study:
Standards 1 and 2 will be integrated throughout the Program of Studies.
Teachers will teach two of the following four ancient civilizations:
Teachers will teach one of the following classical civilizations:
Teachers will teach one of the following post-classical era civilization:
The final content will be a study of Western European civilizations:
Students study United States History to 1865. They learn about the beliefs, contributions, and achievements of significant individuals. They discover how diverse people, different cultures, government, conflict, and a desire for freedom and equality helped build a foundation for American ideals. Students also review for the United States History to 1865 Standards of Learning test which is taken at the end of the year.
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Elementary Social Studies Specialist
Elementary Social Studies Resource Teacher
March 1, 2013