OK, so the same wackjobs that passed Prop H8te are trying to prevent California schools from teaching the history of gay people's contributions to well CIVILIZATION.
You can read about that here: ARTICLE LINK
But let me say what disturbed me about this article even more than their efforts, was this bolded sentence:
Currently, California students do not receive any significant social studies until they study state history in fourth grade. They begin learning about U.S. history in eighth grade, but do not study 20th Century social movements, the most logical place for gay history to receive a serious treatment, until they are juniors in high school.
They don't even BEGIN learning about U.S. History until they're in the frickin' 8th Grade???
By the time I was in the 4th Grade, I had to be able to know not only all the U.S. State capitals, I had to know all the capitals of all the COUNTRIES in the world. And we'd had significant study of not only foundational U.S. history -- the Declaration of Independence, the Revolutionary War, etc. -- but we had additional activities that was designed to expose us to other cultures history too. I can specifically remember studying about Japan in the 4th Grade, for instance.
It sounds to me like my generation actually got more history lessons from Schoohouse Rock on Saturday mornings than these kids are getting.
And then you wonder why they can find shit on a map or don't know anything about their own democracy?
HELLO, it's because you didn't even START teaching them about history until the damned 8th Grade!!
I have a daughter who's in the 11th grade now, and who has been in CA schools from the first grade. And as stated above, they really didn't get started with any real study of US history until 8th grade.
But they did make the kids memorize the names of the US States and the names of their capitols, and the names and places of the larger countries in the world. They had to memorize the names of all the Presidents, and they were introduced to the Declaration of Independence, and the Revolutionary War.
They did do all that in grade school, but all of that memorizing isn't a real study of the history USA. It's just setting the basis for what will follow, when the children's minds are more developed.
I don't think most of the little minds in grade school are developed enough to deal with the level of abstraction needed for any real study history until they are of an age beginning in the 8th grade.
So rote memorization of name and places, being taught that there is a Declaration of Independence and it's wonderful, is about as good as it gets, for history studies in grade school.
When the subject came up about Donner Pass when she was in third grade, and why it was named Donner Pass was also mentioned, she asked me if they cooked them first.
The special introduction designed to expose kids to other cultures my daughter received in grade school was focused on China, for me in an earlier era it was Saudi Arabia.