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Social Science Learning in Schools

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This book is a first of its kind that locates the teaching and learning of social science within the larger perspective of education and its aims. It presents major debates and critical perspectives on social science pedagogy, curriculum design and textbook writing. It emphasises the need to bring the teaching of social science into the realm of pedagogical theory - beyond the confines of ideological debate. The social science curriculum of Eklavya - a non-profit, non-government organisation that develops and field tests innovative educational programmes and trains resource people to implement these programmes through a network of education resource centres located in Madhya Pradesh, India - is reviewed by a team of professionals from various disciplines within the social sciences, education and communication. This curriculum was initiated to enable teachers and students to interact on social issues and processes in an active and analytical way. Eklavya books are unique in making the social world of the learner both an object of study and a process by constantly encouraging learners to reflect upon their own social world. Without impinging upon the autonomous space of the teachers, the texts provide useful pedagogical spaces and ideas, attempting to resolve the dichotomy often posed between the child and the curriculum. Issues posed in the Introduction and analysed within the context of the expert reviews and the contemporary context and concerns in education, include the child and the teacher as an agency, the role of textbooks, the strengths and limits of integration of subjects, the need to focus on methods of social science enquiry as integral to teaching-learning social science in schools, and approaches to writing textbooks.
Product Details

Table of Contents

Foreword - Romila Thapar PrefacePART ONE: SOCIAL SCIENCES IN SCHOOL CURRICULA AND THE EKLAVYA STORYIntroduction - Poonam BatraReconstructing the Curricular Development Process: the Insider's Narrative - The Eklavya TeamPART TWO: SUBJECT AND PEDAGOGIC PERSPECTIVES: A CRITICAL REVIEWCivics Curriculum and Textbooks - Amman MadanGeography Curriculum and Textbooks - Yemuna Sunny and Kamala MenonHistory Curriculum and Textbooks - Tripta Wahi Social Science Texts: A Pedagogic Perspective - Poonam Batra and Disha NawaniPART THREE: TEXTS, CLASSROOMS AND THE LEARNERDynamics of Knowledge and Praxis: A View From the field - The Eklavya TeamConclusion - Poonam BatraEpilogue - The Eklavya TeamGlossaryIndex

About the Author

Poonam Batra is one of India's leading elementary and teacher education academics with over a 25 years of experience in teaching, research, training, management and consultancy. She is Professor of Education at University of Delhi where she co-created the framework for the Bachelor of Elementary Education (B.El.Ed.), India's much celebrated four-year professional elementary teacher education programme in the 1990s. Professor Batra was awarded the prestigious national Jawaharlal Nehru Fellowship in 2007 for research on Teacher Education and Social Change. She has published internationally and domestically in areas of public policy in education, elementary education curriculum and pedagogy, developmental and educational psychology and gender studies. Professor Batra has co-authored a number of key educational policy documents including the Draft National Curriculum Framework for Teacher Education (NCERT/NCTE, 2006; 2009); XI Plan Working Group Report on Teacher Education (Planning Commission, 2007); and the section on Education and Women's Equality in review of the New Policy on Education (NPE, 1986). She has had a long association with the Eklavya elementary and social science programmes in Madhya Pradesh.


The exhaustive process that went into the making of textbooks in social sciences (studies) for Classes 6, 7 and 8 is documented minutely in this book-meticulously and threadbare... The unique contribution of this documentation is that it provides a guide and a perspective to those who are interested in what is transacted in the schools... the perspectives and insights that the book offers will definitely help the analyst or the student interested in examining curriculum and textbooks. -- Contemporary Education Dialogue The essays in this book bring to us in brief the experiences of the Eklavya team in developing a curriculum and the reception of the resulting texts by students and teachers. This is accompanied by an evaluation of the textbooks-chapter-wise-by experts in political science, geography and history... The books on the whole sensitise children to the diversity of life, conflicts and contradictions therein. -- The Tribune

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