St Andrew's Secondary School > The Saints' Experience > Academics > Humanities

Humanities

Lower Sec pupils undergo a modular Humanities programme in St. Andrew’s. Specifically, Sec 1 pupils have their first exposure to the Humanities with the studying of the History of Singapore in Semester ONE. After which, they get to learn the fascinating world that we live in from their Geography lessons. In Sec 2, they continue on their learning of Geography in Semester ONE before continuing on with the remaining syllabus of Singapore History in Semester TWO. This way, the Saints are better prepared for the Upper Secondary Combined Humanities syllabus.

At the Upper Secondary level, all students in the Express and Normal (Academic) courses take Combined Humanities, which comprise a compulsory component (Social Studies) and an elective. In St. Andrew’s, that elective component is History. Capitalizing on the knowledge that the exam skills being tested are very similar in both History and Social Studies, we set our students to focus on mastering that one set of exam skills and wherever suitable, learning content through skills practice. Pupils who are keen to develop their knowledge in Geography can choose to do Geography Elective as a second Humanities subject.

HISTORY

“History is an inquiry into the past. The study of History helps students to see their place in time, where they come from, and their relationship to other communities, societies and the world at large. It enables students to appreciate human endeavours and achievements of the past. It helps to build national identity and strengthen citizenship values. In this era of globalisation, the study of History enables students to adopt a global perspective and understand the complexity of the world we live in.” (Source: CPDD, History Unit)

What is your son learning in LOWER SECONDARY HISTORY?

Secondary ONE

History of Singapore: From Settlement to Nation, pre1819 - 1971
  • Chapter 1 – Was there Singapore Before 1819
  • Chapter 2 – Who was Founder of Singapore
  • Chapter 3 – What Part did the Different Immigrant Communities Play in Singapore Development
  • Chapter 4 – How did the British Govern Singapore Before WW2
  • Chapter 5 – How did External events before WW2 affect Singapore
  • Chapter 6 – How did WW2 affect Singapore

Secondary TWO

  • Chapter 7 – How did the local people respond to British rule after WW2
  • Chapter 8 – How did Singapore progress to Internal Self-Government (1955 – 59)
  • Chapter 9 – How did Singapore achieve Independence
  • Chapter 10 – How did Singapore tackle its challenges in its early years of independence
  • Social Studies Chapter1 – Singapore: A Nation in the World (non-examinable for GCE ‘O’)

What is your son learning in UPPER SECONDARY ELECTIVE HISTORY?

ELECTIVE HISTORY
20th Century World History, 1910s-1991
Unit 1: Impact of World War I
Unit 2: Hope for a Better World?
Unit 3: The Breakdown of World Order
Unit 4: A World Divided and United?

For more details on Upper Secondary ELECTIVE History, pls click for GCE ‘O’ (2192) and GCE ‘N’ (2193) respectively.

KEY LEARNING APPROACHES

  1. Student-centred teaching
    Cooperative lessons are carried out to enable pupils to learn inter-dependently. At the Lower Secondary, Inter-Disciplinary Project Work is carried out which enables pupils to master two or more content at the same time.

  2. Modular programme at the Lower Secondary Level
    There are two reasons why the Department undertook this approach.

    Firstly, for the welfare of our Lower Sec pupils (esp. our Sec 1s). We help them to ease into the secondary school environment by having one less subject to focus per semester. For the Sec 2s, we help them to excel in BOTH humanities by them having to study only one subject per semester.

    Secondly, to enable our teachers to have more time to carry out innovative and student-centred teaching. This is possible as the number of weekly periods is now doubled to six.

  3. Learning Journeys
    These are organized to bring to life what the Saints learn in the classrooms. Such out of class learning are in line with the MOE’s initiative of Teach Less Learn More (TLLM) and National Education (NE). 

  4. Humanities I&E programme - “All Who Passed Before Us”
    This is for the Sec 2 pupils in the 2nd semester. The purpose is to pique their interest in the history of the School. Their attention is drawn for example to Mr. David Marshall and Mrs Elizabeth Choy, both of whom are important historical figures of the nation and of the School. History cannot be any more real and authentic!

GEOGRAPHY

“Geographical education is valuable in deepening and broadening our students’ horizons to enable them to understand about the types and characteristics of the range of physical and human environments. By investigating the physical-human interactions between and within places, our students can become more aware of the processes involved in creating and sustaining these environments. In the process, they will develop values and attitudes critical to their roles as global citizens in a rapidly changing world. They will have a deeper appreciation of issues such as the scarcity of resources and the fragility of the physical-human environments.”(Source: CPDD, Geography Unit)



What is your son learning in LOWER SECONDARY GEOGRAPHY?

Secondary ONE
Theme I - Introduction to Geography
Unit 1: Overview of Geography
Unit 2: Earth as Home

Theme II - Understanding the Environment
Unit 3: Physical and Human Geography
Unit 4: Environments Through Maps

Theme III - The Physical Environment
Unit 8: Rivers
Unit 9: Weather and Climate
Unit 10: Natural Vegetation

Secondary TWO
Theme IV - The Human Environment
Unit 2: Population
Unit 3: Settlements
Unit 4: Agriculture
Unit 5: Transport and Communications

Theme V - Managing the Environment
Unit 7: Land Supply
Unit 8: Water Resources
Unit 9: Pollution
Unit 10: Global warming and Ozone depletion

What is your son learning in UPPER SECONDARY GEOGRAPHY ELECTIVE? (2235)

GEOGRAPHY ELECTIVE
PAPER 1: PHYSICAL GEOGRAPHY
  1. PLATE TECTONICS AND THE RESULTING LANDFORMS
  2. WEATHER AND CLIMATE
  3. NATURAL VEGETATION
  4. RIVERS AND COASTS

PAPER 2: HUMAN GEOGRAPHY
  1. GEOGRAPHY OF FOOD
  2. THE INDUSTRIAL WORLD
  3. TOURISM
  4. DEVELOPMENT

For more details on Syllabus 2235, please click here.

KEY LEARNING APPROACHES

  1. Student-centred teaching
    Cooperative lessons are carried out to enable pupils to learn inter-dependently. At the Lower Secondary, Inter-Disciplinary Project Work is carried out which enables pupils to master two or more content at the same time.

  2. Modular programme at the Lower Secondary Level
    There are two reasons why the Department undertook this approach.

    Firstly, for the welfare of our Lower Sec pupils (esp. our Sec 1s). We help them to ease into the secondary school environment by having one less subject to focus per semester.

    For the Sec 2s, we help them to excel in BOTH humanities by them having to study only one subject per semester. Secondly, to enable our teachers to have more time to carry out innovative and student-centred teaching. This is possible as the number of weekly periods is now doubled to six.

  3. Learning Journeys
    These are organized to bring to life what the SAINTS learn in the classrooms. Such out of class learning are in line with the MOE’s initiative of TLLM and NE.

  4. Down-streaming of topics
    Lower Sec Geography topics now dove-tail with the Upper Sec Geography (2235) syllabus as some of the topics are “down streamed” and taught at the lower secondary level. This is beneficial in two ways. Firstly, it frees up time at the Upper Secondary level (Sec 4) for drilling of exams skills. Secondly, pupils who choose to study Geography Elective would have more time to master the more difficult content, having done the less challenging topics at lower secondary.

SOCIAL STUDIES

“The proposed syllabus is organised around two core ideas – “Being Rooted” and “Living Global”. Through these two ideas, the syllabus aims to develop our students into well-informed, responsible citizens with a sense of national identity and a global perspective. The aims of the revised syllabus are to enable students to: 
  • understand issues that affect the socio-economic development, the governance and the future of Singapore;
  • learn from the experiences of other countries to build and sustain a politically viable, socially cohesive and economically vibrant Singapore;
  • develop thinking and process skills which are essential for lifelong and independent learning;
  • have a deep sense of shared destiny and national identity;
  • develop into citizens who have empathy towards others and will participate responsibly and sensibly in a multi-ethnic, multi-cultural and multi-religious society; and
  • develop into responsible citizens with a global perspective.”(Source: CPDD, Social Studies Unit)

What is your son LEARNING in SOCIAL STUDIES? (2192/1 & 2193/1)

The Upper Secondary Social Studies syllabus adopts a thematic approach for the discussion of issues that nations are concerned with. These issues are presented in the six themes. They are:
  • Singapore as a Nation in the World
  • Understanding Governance
  • Conflict and Harmony in Multi-ethnic Societies
  • Managing International Relations
  • Sustaining Economic Development
  • Facing Challenges and Change

In addition to Content and Knowledge, the syllabus aims to
  • imbue students with the skills of critical inquiry, investigation and reflection;
  • develop critical and creative thinking in students;
  • develop students to be information-literate and adept in process skills so that they will be able to acquire, manage and use information creatively and effectively.
For more details on Upper Secondary Social Studies, pls click for GCE ‘O’ (2192) and GCE ‘N’ (2193) respectively.

How is your son ASSESS in SOCIAL STUDIES

He will be tested on being able to
  • master relevant factual knowledge
  • select, organise and apply the concepts, terms and facts learnt;
  • make judgements, recommendations and decisions. 

In addition,He should be able to
  • comprehend and extract relevant information;
  • draw inferences from given information;
  • analyse and evaluate evidence;
  • compare and contrast different views;
  • distinguish between fact, opinion and judgment;
  • recognise values and detect bias;
  • draw conclusions based on reasoned consideration of evidence and arguments.

How can your son DO WELL in SOCIAL STUDIES

  1. For KNOWLEDGE acquisition
    • create own question bank based on the content in the textbook
    • answer your question AFTER you have studied the details
    • independently creating notes
  2. For ANALYTICAL skills development
    • improve on English Language proficiency by reading main stream articles / materials
    • RANK and JUSTIFY factors / reasons causes / effects (taught in the textbook) based on the principle of “First Things First”
    • be very familiar with LORMS (level of response marking scheme) and know what and how to craft an answer to achieve a higher level answer
    • be very familiar with how the 4 types of Source-based Question i.e. Inference, Comparison, Utility and Reliability are to be answered
  3. For WEEKLY class lessons
    • pay attention to teacher in classü clarify doubts either personally or Email
    • keep all notes properly in the file
    • do consistent revision
    • study for all tests and exams

ELEMENTS OF BUSINESS SKILLS

"The services sector has grown substantially over the years contributing significantly to the economy of the country. It continues to be a key driver for employment growth in Singapore. Given the broad economic trends and the focus on services, in particular, in tourism and related industries, it is important that students are provided opportunities to be equipped with generic employability skills to stay relevant for the future.” (Source: CPDD, Commerce Unit)

OVERVIEW

This is an elective course available to only the Upper Secondary Normal (Technical) pupils. In essence, this course is designed to educate pupils on certain aspects of business knowledge pertaining to the service-related industries namely retail, travel and tourism, and hospitality in Singapore. Assessment of performance is through a written exam (60%) and course work (40%).

SYLLABUS

UNDERSTANDING BUSINESS ACTIVITIES
  • Introduction to Business Activities

UNDERSTANDING SERVICE INDUSTRIES
  • Retail Industry
  • Travel and Tourism Industry
  • Hospitality Industry

MARKETING PRODUCTS AND SERVICES
  • Aspects of Marketing
  • Planning and Promotion

CUSTOMER RELATIONS
  • Customer service
  • Communicating with the customer

For more details on Syllabus 7089, please click here.