“Stop Crossing that Delaware!”

What do you remember from your time in spent history class?

Screenshot 2016-02-17 22.10.07

1851 oil-on-canvas painting by the German American artist Emanuel Gottlieb Leutze

Chances are, you remember Washington crossing the Delaware.
You remember he crossed the Delaware when you were in 5th grade…
And you remember he crossed the Delaware (again) when you were in 8th grade…
And you remember he crossed the Delaware (again, again) when you were in in high school.

You may want to consider how that iconic moment could represent all those moments that Social Studies/History teachers repeatedly revisited in your education.

Yes, there are almost 80 years between that winter crossing during the American Revolution and that shot at Fort Sumter that set off the Civil War…but not a lot of reteaching on those 80 years of Constitution making, British blockading, and tear trailing.

Besides, while Washington’s sneak attack on the Hessians’ celebration at their winter quarters in Trenton, New Jersey, was a military coup, there is something a little underhanded about attacking at Christmas.

The National Council of Social Studies has approved  new frameworks for social studies teachers to follow that address this problem of reteaching. They are called  The College, Career and Civic Life Frameworks for Social Studies – the C3s – and the emphasis is not on teaching the the iconic events, but on the skills all students need to be members of a democratic society.

So while history repeats its, the C3s are to stop the repeating of history… and the crossing of the Delaware, again.





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