Social Studies News: May 2019

civicsSocial Studies

Social Studies Education News

Elementary Civics Integration Workshop: Spokane


We still have spots available for the Spokane workshop!

We invite district teams to sign up if you are in the region.  This comprehensive two-day workshop, held May 30-31, will provide resources and training to help teachers engage in meaningful civic discourse across content areas in the elementary classroom.  Meals, transportation, substitute coverage, and clock hours are provided free of charge by OSPI. 

Click here to register for this workshop.  If you are interested in travel reimbursement, please complete this short online survey.


Civics isn't something where you learned - learn it for a couple weeks in high school; it is who we are. Americans defined themselves by their Constitution. That is what creates us. This is our heritage, and you must know our heritage. - Anthony Kennedy

Nominate a Student for the 2018-19 Daniel J. Evans Civic Education Award

DJ Evans

Established by the Washington State Legislature in 2003, this award is named after former Washington State Governor Daniel J. Evans. It recognizes four students, two from Western Washington and two from Eastern Washington, for their civic leadership and academic achievement in social studies.

Who is eligible for the Evans Award?
Any student in grades 3–12 who has successfully completed an OSPI-Developed Civics Assessment and who is a civic leader in his/her classroom, school, and/or community.

How are students nominated for the Evans Award?
Teachers, principals, counselors, or other school personnel may nominate students online. The deadline to nominate is June 30 each year.

How are the winners selected?
Winners are selected by a statewide committee of social studies teacher leaders. Two students from each side of the state receive recognition.  Click here to nominate a deserving student.

How are the winners recognized?
Awards are presented to the students in their home districts, often at a school assembly or school board meeting.

Applications are open until June 30, 2019.

WA State Educator Workshop

INJUSTICE of the WWII Japanese American Incarceration: Workshops for Washington State Teachers

Sign up today for the June 1 workshop in Spokane.  Go to to register.

Kip Tokuda

Celebrate Day of Remembrance, May 16

Day of Remembrance

Washington State Historical Society Marks Difficult

Community Anniversary with Day of Remembrance

Tacoma, WA – On May 17 and 18 in 1942, after President Franklin Roosevelt signed Executive Order 9066, over 700 people of Japanese ancestry in the south Puget Sound area were directed to report to Union Station for the forced removal from their communities to federally-constructed concentration camps. Join the Washington State History Museum for the fourth annual Day of Remembrance on Thursday, May 16 starting at 3:00 PM,with free programming and activities to commemorate this event, the lives it impacted, and its legacy. 

“With this event, we’d like to continue to honor this important date in Tacoma’s history, whose contemporary parallels are all too familiar,” said Sansei (or ‘third generation’ Japanese American) writer Tamiko Nimura, who is an organizational partner for the event. “Remembering can take many forms, and we hope our communities will participate in healing and resolving to take action.”

The event is free and all ages are welcome. Visitors can learn to make origami folded paper cranes, a symbol of peace, to carry during the commemorative walk to Union Station later in the evening. In the museum’s auditorium, visitors will experience history through the Living Voices performance Within the Silence, written by Ken Mochizuki, sharing the story of a teenage girl sent to a US concentration camp as a result of Executive Order 9066. 

Following the Living Voices performance, visitors are invited to participate in a facilitated discussion and give input about an upcoming permanent exhibition to be incorporated into the museum’s Great Hall of Washington History. Opening for the National Day of Remembrance in February 2020, the new gallery will focus on Japanese American history across Washington related to Executive Order 9066. Join moderator Eileen Yamada Lamphere (Puyallup Valley Chapter of the Japanese American Citizens League), along with museum staff, to discuss the content of the exhibition and provide your feedback and ideas.

To close the Day of Remembrance, Tamiko Nimura and Tacoma historian Michael Sullivan will lead a community procession to Union Station. Remarks will be made in front of the former railway station to remember the families who reported there on their way to being forcibly incarcerated in federal camps during World War II. The procession is open to all; gather in the museum’s outdoor amphitheater at 7:00 PM to participate.

Day of Remembrance Event Schedule: Create paper cranes, see a performance, provide input on an upcoming exhibition about Japanese American history in Washington, and participate in commemorative walk to the place of boarding for South Puget Sound Japanese American families as they were forced from their homes.

3:00-7:00 PM              Paper crane folding in the Grand Lobby

5:00-6:00 PM              Living Voices presents “Within the Silence” in the auditorium

6:00-6:45 PM              Town Hall discussion moderated by Eileen Yamada Lamphere in auditorium. Learn about and share your ideas for the upcoming Washington State History Museum exhibition of Japanese American history in our state.

7:00-7:30 PM              Commemorative procession from museum’s outdoor amphitheater to Union Station led by Tamiko Nimura and Michael Sullivan

More information at

Nominations for 2019 Governor's History Awards


The Washington State History Society announces that nominations for the 2019 Governor’s History Awards are due May 15.  Please use the nomination form at

Awards to be presented include:

  • David Douglas Award- significant contribution of an individual or an organization through projects, exhibits, digital presentations or programs such as documentaries, apps, websites or blogs, educational products or any other vehicle that informs or expands our appreciation of any field of Washington State history during the previous year. No book nominations permitted.
  • Robert Gray Medal- the Robert Gray Medal recognizes distinguished and long-term contributions to Pacific Northwest history through demonstrated excellence in one or more of the following areas: teaching, writing, research, historic preservation, and service to local historical societies
  • Governor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching History- an outstanding certified teacher of Pacific Northwest history in an accredited K-12 school in Washington or to a nonprofit organization
  • Peace and Friendship Award- a Native American who has advanced public understanding of the cultural diversity of the peoples of Washington State
  • Peace and Friendship Award- an individual who has advanced public understanding of the cultural diversity of the peoples of Washington State

Help Improve AASLH Visitation

The American Association for State and Local History (AASLH) is conducting a national survey of institutions seeking information about visitation trends between the years of 2013-2018.  Results will be shared with participants in August of 2019.  So far, only 8 Washington State history organizations have participated (way to go, Bellingham Railway Museum, Orcas Island Historical Museum, Cheney Historical Museum, Skagit County Historical Museum, Lacey Museum , Renton History Museum, and Kittitas County Historical Museum!). To improve the information we’ll be able to get to better serve Washington history organizations, please copy and paste the following links:

  • Facebook: How’s visitation at your site? Up? Down? Steady?  The American Association for State and Local History (AASLH) is conducting a national visitation survey and wants to know what visitation trends you’ve seen at your site in the last few years. Take 5 minutes to complete the survey and share with any other institutions who are interested in participating. 
  • Twitter: How’s visitation at your site? The American Association for State and Local History (AASLH) is conducting a national visitation survey and wants to know what visitation trends you’ve seen at your site in the last few years. Survey takes 5 min and the results will be shared with the participants this summer! 
  • Newsletter Messages  Responses Needed: What visitation trends have you seen at your site over the last few years? The American Association for State and Local History (AASLH) is conducting a national visitation survey  and wants your feedback! Please take five minutes to complete the survey and share it with other interested institutions.

NAMLE Conference Registration Open


Media literacy education in Washington State will be the focus of a presentation at the upcoming National Association for Media Literacy Education (NAMLE) conference in June. Michael Danielson, President of Action for Media Education (AME) and AME’s Executive Director, Marilyn Cohen, will discuss recent actions taken by Washington’s legislators that have implications for schools all across our state. Legislation first passed in Washington has been providing a model for legislative action throughout the country focused on the increasing need for media literacy education.

Registration for the NAMLE conference, “A Path Forward: Elevating Conversation, Unifying Voices” is now open. The conference will be held in Washington, D.C. from June 26-28, 2019. More info at

For more info about AME, visit the website at or

Sikh Coalition Resources for Educators


Interested in teaching about Sikhs in your classroom? The Sikh Coalition has a dedicated web page of free resources for educators, including lesson plans tailored for the classroom. You can even request that a classroom poster or other resources be mailed to your school free of charge. The Sikh Coalition's Educator's Guide is a comprehensive resource for teachers of all levels. Middle and High School teachers, check out the lesson plan on using primary sources to teach about media coverage and Sikh American history or the lesson plan that uses video content to spark conversation on Sikh religion and culture.

Ethnic Studies Summer Institute 2019

ES Institute

2019-20 OER Project Grant


Proposals due May 30 by 4 pm

As more districts develop or adapt OER, we have a tremendous opportunity to share resources -- promoting equitable access to standards-aligned, quality instructional materials. This grant program is in support of that goal.

In order to be considered for funding, proposals must address one of the following areas:

  1. Complete the development/adaptation of openly-licensed core instructional materials aligned to state learning standards in a specific content area.


  1. Complete the development/adaptation of openly licensed unit-level supplemental instructional materials aligned to state learning standards in a specific content area.
  • This opportunity is open to Washington public schools, tribal schools, school districts, or educational service districts.

    Apply through the iGrants system – Form Package Number 730.

    Contact Information:

    Barbara Soots | OER Program Manager | OSPI | @waOSPI_OER


Announcing Judicial Intstitutes in Eastern/Western Washington

District Court Eastern

2019 Judicial Institute for Middle School and High School Teachers

Eastern WA – in Spokane -

The Court will hold its 11th annual Judicial Institute for Teachers October 17-18, 2019. This institute is for middle school and high school teachers in the Eastern District of Washington who have not previously attended. The general theme of the course is the Constitution - how it works, how it has been interpreted, and how the Judiciary evolved to where it is today.

District Court Western

2019 Judicial Institute for Secondary School Teachers           

Western WA – in Tacoma -

The court will hold its 8th annual Judicial Institute for Teachers July 9-11, 2019. This 3 day program is offered to middle and high school teachers who teach in western Washington, within the court’s geographic boundaries. There is no cost for the program, and clock hours are offered. Overnight accommodations are also included.

Professional Development Summer Programs for Teachers

Freedoms Foundation

Freedoms Foundation in Valley Forge is a non-profit, non-partisan organization that offers weeklong professional development for teachers from throughout the country. They have provided graduate-level, accredited programs since 1965 to more than 13,000 teachers.

Here is their dilemma: This year they have scholarship money for 50 teachers from the Pacific Northwest (Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana and Alaska) and are having difficulty reaching those who might be interested. The scholarship money covers the cost of tuition. The teacher is responsible for providing his/her own transportation either to the Valley Forge (PA) location or to Pueblo, Colorado, where Freedoms Foundation is hosting a new program this year. They want to fill every scholarship spot so that they can ensure future funding for teachers in our area. Last year they had about 30 teachers from the Pacific Northwest.

For information about professional development scholarships please visit

Japanese-American Experience of the World War II Era


What choices and decisions do societies face in times of war? What drives some individuals to stand against prejudice and oppression? These are some of the questions explored in the free open educational resources from KSPS Spokane, “Injustice at Home: The Japanese-American Experience of the World War II Era.” Five thematic videos along with IDM lesson plans developed by educators Leslie Heffernan, Starla Fey and Morgen Larsen, explore the mass incarceration of Japanese-Americans during WWII, drawing upon first-hand stories of camp survivors and those who endured rampant discrimination both inside and outside the exclusion zone.  The project is made possible by the Kip Tokuda Memorial Civil Liberties Public Education Program. Check out the resources here:


Fourth Annual Powell Holocaust Summer Institute: August 5-9, 2019 at the Henry and Sandra Friedman Holocaust Center for Humanity. Participants will explore topics related to Holocaust history including antisemitism, rescue and resistance, genocide, non-Jewish Holocaust victims, Japanese internment, current events, and local connections. Each day will include themed discussions of today’s world and practical applications for the classroom. Teachers will work together in small groups to develop and prepare lessons for their classrooms. Open to classroom teachers of grades 6-12. Learn more and apply now! This institute is generously sponsored by the Powell Family Foundation and the Conference on Material Claims Against Germany

Rick Steves Classroom Europe

Rick Steves

A Message From Rick Steves:

We are excited to share our new resource, Rick Steves Classroom Europe, our streaming archive of free video clips for teachers. 

We have now uploaded more than 300 clips into the database for you to use with students. Please  head on over to, give it a spin, and let us know how it goes. We’d love to hear from you to help us make this a useful and powerful teaching tool.  I just love Rick Steves Classroom Europe and I am thrilled that we can provide this free resource to teachers – we are very proud of it and hope it helps empower your work as teachers.

Washington State Historical Society Glimpses

WSHS logo

Landscape paintings from the Historical Society's collections

On view through June 30


"The health of the eye seems to demand a horizon. 

We are never tired, so long as we can see far enough."

- Ralph Waldo Emerson


HORIZON  is an exhibition comprised of some 30 landscapes created between 1870 to 1966. The paintings are hung in a way that aligns their dominant horizon lines, and the resulting effect is a continual landscape around the perimeter of the gallery. 

Visitors will see works by artists regarded as the first woman and first African American painters of the American West and many other artists whose stories are also compelling. While the exhibition features paintings of differing sizes, media, and techniques, the works portray the suggested influence of the physical grandeur and desire to capture the landscape of our region, alongside the larger idea of horizon and the opportunity that looking westward afforded many of the artists whose work is represented here. Step into HORIZON and take in the view!


Unlocking McNeil's Past 

"Everybody seems to be incredibly interested in this place, partly because access is denied, so this is a really great opportunity to get a glimpse into a place that you actually wouldn't be able to see or experience otherwise," Mary Mikel Stump, Director of Audience Engagement, Washington State Historical Society.

KING 5's Evening show produced a segment about the exhibition Unlocking McNeil's Past: The Prison, The Place, The People. Click the image above to hear Evening's interview with Mary Mikel Stump. Visit the Washington State History Museum by May 26 to experience this fascinating exhibition in person.

Hear from civilians who worked at McNeil, individuals who grew up on the island, and people who were formerly incarcerated at the prison in the six-part Forgotten Prison podcast, a collaboration between KNKX Public Radio and Washington State History Museum. ( 

Reading Apprenticeship Looking for Educators

Reading Apprenticeship is a professional development model and instructional approach for middle and high school educators. Designed to support both academic and social-emotional learning, Reading Apprenticeship gives teachers new ways to engage students with text and apprentice them into discipline specific ways of reading, writing, talking, and reasoning. Students are explicitly supported to build identities as people who can solve problems and persevere with challenging texts. 

For 2018-22, a seed grant is available for those schools interested in participating in an evaluation of the program.

  • Increase the number of highly effective middle and high school teachers serving high needs students by engaging 1,500 teachers in Reading Apprenticeship professional learning and science/engineering Inquiry Design Groups
  • Improve middle and high school students’ reading comprehension and science achievement by increasing opportunities to collaborate and engage with more varied and challenging science and engineering tasks and texts
  • Build local capacity for sustained implementation and dissemination through teacher leader development, regional support and new tools.

For More Information:

Questions? Contact: Cynthia Greenleaf at