Thank you for visiting the website for Mr. Bennett’s World Studies class at Battle Ground High School! You have reached the right place to explore the depths of human interaction throughout history. This class primarily focuses on World History from approximately 1500 to the present and incorporates important themes from geography, economics, civics, and historical thinking. Additionally, students will be taught valuable skills that will serve them throughout high school, post-secondary education, and life.
Why Study Social Studies?
1. History and Social studies promote students understanding of people and societies.
“History must serve as our laboratory, and data from the past must serve as our most vital evidence in the unavoidable quest to figure out why our complex species behaves as it does in societal settings. [History] offers the only extensive evidential base for the contemplation and analysis of how societies function, and people need to have some sense of how societies function simply to run their own lives.” – Dr. Peter Stearns, Historian
2. In order for students to effect change in their lives, they must have a strong understanding of how societies, institutions, and people have come to be and continue to influence the present day.
Few will have the greatness to bend history itself; but each of us can work to change a small portion of events, and in the total; of all those acts will be written the history of this generation. -Robert Kennedy
3. The study of history promotes strong citizenship.
“Citizens are not born capable of ruling. They must be educated to rule wisely and fairly. They must be drawn out of the egotism of childhood and the privacy of their homes into the public world of democratic reasoning, deliberation and consensus. This requires not only civility, but knowledge and skill.” – Thomas Jefferson, President of the United States
4. Social studies teaches students effective reading, writing and critical thinking skills necessary for life.
The reading process does not end with comprehension. In the adult world, people do not ask friends or colleagues to recall specific information from a book or article they have read. Instead, they ask for an opinion on a lead story, or for analysis of the latest Wall Street trend, or for an interpretation of a controversial article… – Karen Tankersley, The Threads of Reading
5. Learning about history is fun, inspiring and reveals beauty in the past and present.
There is another reason for becoming a historian: it’s fun. The mystery in history brings out the detective in us; there are countless unsolved crimes and riddles and unresolved debates. I’m nosy enough to want to put my two cents in, and I’m concerned enough to care. It’s also fun to learn about people, both famous and ordinary. Because times are always changing, habits change, as do styles, customs, technology, and levels of knowledge. I enjoy learning about the human side (including the quirks, foibles, and vices) of prominent people and about daily life during another time, in another culture. – Robert Blackey, California State University at San Bernardino
Can you think of any other reasons to study History/Social Studies?