September 2020

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Header: OK Social Studies

September 2020

Monthly Virtual Meetings

  • Join other social studies educators in our monthly meet-ups the first Tuesday of every month at 4:00 p.m. The next meeting will be on October 6, 2020. This meeting is a recurring meeting so this Zoom link will work for all meetings. The password is 981251.
  • Geography teachers are invited to join the OSDE, the Oklahoma Alliance for Geographic Education, and teachers around the state for a Geography Virtual Meeting on October 13, 2020 at 5:00 p.m. The meet-up is geared for teachers of grades 4-12 and our topic will be teaching geography online. Join using this Zoom link and the password is 092908.

Constitution Day September 17

September 17th is Constitution Day and Citizenship Day. This day commemorates the September 17, 1787 signing of the Constitution of the United States. Each school that receives Federal funds is to work with students about the Constitution on this day. I found this a great day to discuss with students about how to become a citizen if you were not born here in the United States as it is also called Citizenship Day. I asked students to name something they thought every citizen should know as a bellwork question and then had them take "their test" to see if they all knew the answers as a way to introduce one of the parts of the process. There are many resources for Constitution Day including the following:

Also on Constitution Day, the Bill of Rights Institute is exploring the theme “United we Stand?” Your students can join all or part of the live stream on YouTube that day as The Bill of Rights Institute hosts discussions with renowned scholars and leaders from the worlds of business and politics.
Join for a student-centered discussion!

United States Census

Dear Teachers, 

With less than a month remaining, Oklahoma ranks 40th nationally for participation in the 2020 Census. For every uncounted resident, an estimated $17,000 in funding is lost each decade. For a family of four, that's a staggering loss of $68,000, much of it federal education funding that our kids so desperately rely on.    

Please share with your families how critical it is to be counted and encourage them to involve their students in this historic activity. Post this flyer in your classroom and/or virtual classroom, and send it home with students. 

Take it a step further. Accept the challenge to incorporate kid-friendly Census data and fun facts into your lessons this month. You can help students examine data about kids their age and learn more about Oklahoma as they collect, organize, analyze, map and graph information with free teacher-designed lessons from the U.S. Census Bureau. Older students can gain early exposure to statistical literacy and their data-driven world. Explore Statistics in Schools for free, engaging PK-12 resources and activities in social studies, math, English, geography, sociology and more. 

The Census questionnaire only takes about 5-10 minutes to complete. Go to to get started. Oklahoma’s window to respond closes Sept. 30

With respect and gratitude,

Joy Hofmeister, State Superintendent of Public Instruction

What's New With We the People?

The Center for Civic Education is offering a special Power to the People webinar series, which begins this Constitution Day, September 17, at 6:30 p.m. This series of seven free webinars features nationally renowned scholars explaining both sides of controversial issues, ranging from monuments to mass incarcerations to voter suppression. 

In the first webinar, The Power of People and the Courts, U.S. District Judge Mae Avila D'Agostino and Center for Civic Education President Christopher Riano will review important U.S. Supreme Court cases from 2019-2020. The Power to the People webinar series is sponsored by the Center for Civic Education, Kansas State University, and the Indiana Bar Foundation. Visit the website or click the links below to sign up.

The Power of People and the Courts - Thursday, September 17 at 6:30 p.m. Scholars - Christopher Riano and U.S. District Judge Mae Avila D'Agostino

The Power of Indian Sovereignty - Thursday, September 24 at 6:30 p.m. Scholar - David E. Wilkins, Professor, E. Claiborne Robins Distinguished Professor in Leadership Studies, University of Richmond

The Power of Movements: The Struggle to Pass the Nineteenth Amendment and Beyond - Thursday, October 1 at 6:30 p.m. Scholar- Lisa Tetrault, Associate Professor, Carnegie Mellon University

The Power of Symbols: Monuments and Flags - Thursday, October 8 at 6:30 p.m.  Scholar - Brandon Hasbrouck, Assistant Professor of Law, Washington and Lee University School of Law.

The Power of the Criminal Justice System - Thursday, October 15 at 6:30 p.m. Scholar - Hernandez Stroud, Counsel, Brennan Center for Justice

The Power of Free Speech - Thursday, October 22 at 6:30 p..m. Scholar - David Hudson, Visiting Associate Professor of Legal Practice, Belmont University

The Power of Voting: The Electoral College, Gerrymandering, and Suppression - Thursday, October 29 at 6:30 p.m. Scholar- Michael Li, Senior Counsel, Brennan Center's Democracy Program