Social Studies

Welcome to Gaithersburg Middle School Social Studies.  We use historical events to teach our students to read and think about history in a new way. Historical thinking skills include examining historical events through various perspectives of different groups of people.

GMS Social Studies Staff

Historical Thinking Chart   Tabla De Pensamiento Histórico 


  Reading Like a Historian

Students will investigate historical questions by employing reading strategies such as sourcing, contextualizing, corroborating, and close reading.  Instead of memorizing historical facts, students will evaluate the trustworthiness of multiple perspectives on historical issues and learn to make historical claims backed by documentary evidence.

Reading & Thinking Like a Historian Strategies:

Students will also convert their historical reading and thinking skill and apply it into their writing.  Students will be writing about the multiple perspectives on historical issues and learn to make historical claims backed by documentary evidence in written form.

Community and Family Support

The best way for families to support our students in Social Studies is to help students to make connections of the Past to the Present.

Current Events Discussion:  Resources like CNN Daily News provide students with age appropriate new headlines.  Things to consider when discussing historical topics to current events:   

  • What is your current event about? (5 W's: Who , What, When,Where, and Why)
  • What does the current event topic remind me of ?
  • What is one lesson you learned from your new source?
  • What questions do you still have? Where can you get additional information?
  • How do you fell after reading or watching the current event topic?
  • How does this connect to another topic we have studied in class?
  • What are the multiple perspectives of the current event topic?
Additional Resources:

Close Reading

What is History?

Contextualization

Sourcing

Historical Thinking Skills

Corroboration

7th Grade JA Finance Park Field Trip 

Parent Volunteer Sign-Up

Every 7th Grade students will have an opportunity to take part in a Finance Park, field trip that  combines in-class learning with a day-long visit to a fully interactive, simulated town. Students are introduced to personal finance and career exploration. They receive family and income scenarios, then visit businesses to purchase things like insurance, clothing, food, transportation and real estate. They create a budget, allocate utility expenses and make personal investments. Students are the sole providers for a family and must accommodate the needs of the family without overspending. Educators assist student learning by preparing students before the day and summarizing the experience through post visit activities.

Students Learn About:

 
  • Banking

  • Budgeting

  • Credit and debt

  • Opportunity costs

  • Taxes

  • Interest rates

  • Wages

  • Income and expenses

  • Needs and wants

  • Careers

  • Risks and benefits of credit

  • Saving and investing

  • Successful budgeting

  • Personal abilities, career interests, work preferences, and values

 

Highlights

  • Real-life, interactive simulation

  • First-rate learning strategies

  • Partnership between schools, parents, and the business community

  • Memorable educational experience

  • Active, rather than passive learning

  • Real, rather than imagined experiences

  • Incorporates classroom learning with a full-day simulation in a state-of-the art immersive learning center

Additional Resources on Finance Park