Graduation Date

5-2008

Document Type

Master's Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science

Department or Program

Education

Department or Program Chair

Madalienne Peters, Ed.D.

First Reader

Madalienne F. Peters, Ed.D.

Abstract

The educational publisher Pearson/Scott-Foresman in 2006 introduced curriculum to address California History/Social Studies standards. Fifth grade students have difficulty comprehending non-fiction text that is informative enough to have historical accuracy. The publisher promotes a program that features a standard in every lesson, and promises no extraneous content. An examination is conducted as to how this program approaches the required California History/Social Studies elements of providing "A Story Well Told" which should include, according to specifications by the California State Department of Education, "forceful personalities, controversies, issues of the time, and primary sources."(CDE, 2003) Literature on the topic of history education contains strategies for deconstructing academic language and clarification on historical literature which "should [capture] historical events with dramatic immediacy, engaging students' interests, and [foster] deeper understanding of the times" (Crabtree, Nash, 1994). Scott-Foresman History/Social Studies text for fifth grade is examined for its effectiveness in helping students comprehend history through a written narrative, and for enabling teachers to convey the depth and breadth of this span of American history. The adaptations the classroom teacher can make to enhance the written text are detailed in this paper.

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