Every Book Is a Social Studies Book
How to Meet Standards with Picture Books, K–6
by Andrea S. Libresco, Jeannette Balantic, and Jonie C. Kipling
February 2011, 269pp, 8 1/2x11
1 volume, Libraries Unlimited

Paperback: 978-1-59884-520-4
$30, £23, 25€, A43
eBook Available: 978-1-59884-521-1
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

After No Child Left Behind went into effect, many school districts cut class time for social studies in favor of tested subjects like math and language arts. Some elementary teachers spend only 12 minutes per week teaching social studies. The good news is that social studies lessons can be incorporated into nearly any subject.

This text offers a teacher and student-friendly collection of lessons and activities that help educators use picture books to engage younger students in meaningful social studies activities and bring this critical subject back in elementary schools.

In order for today’s children to succeed as adults, they need a solid foundation of life skills inculcated at a young age. Social studies is key to building this critical knowledge, yet less attention is being paid to social studies in elementary schools as this subject becomes more essential. The authors of this text have a solution: use picture books as dual-purpose texts that fulfill more than just language arts needs, and take the time dedicated to those lessons to simultaneously teach social studies.

Each chapter of this text is organized around one of the National Council for the Social Studies’ Ten Thematic Strands, covering diverse and engaging topics ranging from community and individuality to science and technology. This book serves as a vital resource for classroom teachers, methods professors, staff developers, and curriculum writers who prioritize keeping social studies a part of the elementary school curriculum.


  • Includes excerpts of primary source materials for student activities
  • Contains various photographs, illustrations, charts, and graphs throughout the text
  • Extensive annotated bibliography of picture books for each chapter that includes a discussion question for each book
  • Appendixes include invaluable planning templates, reproducible handouts, and other teacher resources
Andrea S. Libresco is associate professor of education in the Department of Teaching, Learning, and Technology at Hofstra University, Hempstead, NY. She is former social studies chair (7–12) and lead teacher (K–6) who has written extensively on teaching elementary social studies. Her published works include the article "Spaces of Liberty: Battling the New Soft Bigotry of NCLB."

Jeannette Balantic is social studies curriculum coordinator in the Garden City School District, Garden City, NY. She has also worked as a social studies methods instructor at Hofstra University and Teachers College, and as a curriculum developer and pedagogical adviser for the China Institute and Asia Society.

Jonie C. Kipling is a first-grade teacher in the North Shore School District, Sea Cliff, NY, where she also taught for many years at the intermediate level. Kipling has taught social studies methods at Hofstra University, and served as president of the Long Island Council for the Social Studies.
By clicking “Accept All Cookies”, you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation, analyze site usage, and assist in our marketing efforts.
Accept All Cookies | Decline.