January 2021

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Header: OK Social Studies

January 2021

OCSS Virtual Conference

The Oklahoma Council for the Social Studies is excited to invite you to their upcoming “Going Viral” virtual conference. The conference will be held at 4:30 PM on January 12, 19, & 26, with six breakout session options each day. There are sessions of interest from a range of Social Studies content areas, student age ranges from early childhood to high school, pedagogical strategies/tips, content & literacy integration, Personal Financial Literacy, and more. Many of the presenters are those who would typically not be able to easily travel to the traditional in-person conference; OCSS is honored to have these fresh voices and perspectives joining the conference. All of this is absolutely FREE … there is not even a pre-registration necessary – simply complete the attendance form provided during your selected session(s) so that you can receive a certificate for PD credit.

Click here for the Conference Program – this program includes the Zoom links/access information for each session.

Please contact David Burton, OCSS Vice President, with any questions –davidburton@mooreschools.com or 405-735-4286.

Six Big Ideas in the Constitution of the United States

The Oklahoma Humanities has announced a new civics curriculum collaboration with the Center for Legislative Archives at the National Archives and the National Archives Foundation. The virtual program's curriculum will focus on teaching the foundational principles that shape the Constitution and the institutions that bring its design to life. It is open to middle school and high school level educators with three sessions to choose from in January.

Guests can register for a session (January 8th, 9th or 15th) and learn more at the link below. 


Tulsa Race Massacre Centennial Educator Institute 2021

Oklahoma educators are invited to attend the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre Centennial Commission's statewide Professional Development led by Dr. Karlos Hill, Department Chair of African and African-American Studies at the University of Oklahoma. Some of the topics included are: Black Wall Street, survivor and descendent interviews, 2001 Commission Report, primary and secondary educational resources, and much more. Download the brochure and apply at www.rjiok.org/trmi2021. Deadline for applications is February 1, 2021.

Evening With the Fed Webinar Series

Evening at the Fed for Educators is expanding to a series of monthly virtual events this spring! Educators are invited to live webinars focused on timely and relevant issues affecting our economy today.  

How has COVID-19 impacted employment and future wages? What is climate change doing to our economic resources?  Will the food supply chain and other agricultural factors cause inflation? Join the discussion to receive up-to-date insights, trends and classroom resources from senior economists across the Federal Reserve System.

These topically-driven webinars are free to K-16 educators and professional development certificates will be provided to all who attend. All webinars are hosted by the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City and its branches in Denver, Omaha and Oklahoma City.

There is no cost to attend, but advance registration is required by Wednesday, January 13, 2021. Links to the webinars will be sent closer to the date of the event. 

Series Topics:

Career and Skills for the 21st Century - Thursday, Jan. 14 5:00-6:30 p.m.(CST)

Climate Risks and the Economy - Thursday, February 11 5:00-6:30 p.m. (CST)

Ag and the Economy - Wednesday, March 24 5:00-6:30 p.m. (CST)

Energy and the Economy - Wednesday, April 17 5:00-6:30 p.m. (CST)

COVID-19 and the Economy - Wednesday, May 6 5:00-6:30 p.m. (CST)

Register Here


To accommodate those living in different time zones, the webinar will be posted on the website after the event. Please register today!

Virtual Colonial Days

Fifth-Grade teachers: Your class is invited to use 21st-century technology to connect with 17th– and 18th-century Americans during Virtual Colonial Days, presented in February and March by the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence.

“A Tapestry of Perspectives” is the theme of the ZOOM webinar series, which will share the diverse experiences of early American women and men who helped forge our nation’s history. Due to COVID-19, the webinars are being planned as a safe alternative to Colonial Day at the Capitol, an annual hands-on history education event for Oklahoma fifth-graders.

The Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence will host the ZOOM webinars at 10 a.m. each Friday from Jan. 29 through March 12 featuring historical interpreters from Colonial Williamsburg, George Washington’s Mount Vernon and more. Participation is free, and each webinar will be limited to 500 students on a first-come basis. Registrants who do not make the 500-student limit will have access to session recordings. Each 50-minute live session will include time for students to submit questions.

Teachers are encouraged to register for the full series. Video will be available for one week following each presentation for viewing by those students who miss the webinar.

Coming Soon: Each of the session listings below will offer optional lesson plans and hands-on activities.

January 29 - Jamestown: Three Cultures, One Land 

Presented by Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation Education staff Jessica Pedrick and Sally Stook.

Historic Jamestown interpreter Rebecca Suerdieck portrays colonist Marye Bucke, and historical interpreter Valarie Gray Holmes portrays Angela, one of the first Africans to arrive in Virginia.

Tulsa-based historical interpreter Stephen Smith portrays Founding Father, inventor and printer Benjamin Franklin.

Tom Plott, a historical interpreter from Mount Vernon, portrays George Washington's friend and physician Dr. James Craik.

Colonial Williamsburg historical interpreter Jeremy V. Morris portrays Jack Booker, an enslaved printer in colonial Virginia.

March 5 - Revolutionary Women

Playwright, actress and storyteller Darci Tucker of Williamsburg, Va., portrays loyalist spy Elizabeth Thompson and patriot soldier Deborah Samson.

Mount Vernon presents George Washington (portrayed by Dan Shippey) and Alexander Hamilton (portrayed by Eben Kuhns) along with Colonial Williamsburg's Marquis de Lafayette (portrayed by Mark Schneider) in this Virtual Colonial Days finale session.

Registration deadline is Friday, January 15

Learn about our Virtual Colonial Days Bill of Rights and Me! contest for students and Classroom Museum Experience drawing for teachers. Prizes will be awarded for each!

NEH Landmarks Workshop The Long Road From Brown

Teachers (grades 6-12) are invited to participate in a virtual workshop on school desegregation in Virginia following the historic Brown v. Board of Education decision. Teachers will virtually interact with leading historians in the field, engage historic sites and archives, and will discuss curricular and teaching techniques related to this subject.

This workshop unveils the unknown stories of school desegregation in Virginia and throughout the nation after the U.S. Supreme Court decision Brown v. Board of Education. It highlights the role African American played in bringing about Brown, the state's determined resistance, the processes that led to initial and then token school desegregation, the eventual integration of public education, and the slow decline of school integration in recent decades. 

Participants will receive a stipend of $1,300. Please apply by March 1, 2021 to participate in the National Endowment for the Humanities Landmarks Workshop, The Long Road From Brown.

Workshop dates: July 11-16 and July 25-30, 2021

The workshop will be held virtually. Activities will be conducted synchronously and asynchronously on the internet. There is no residental component.

Visit https://sites.wp.odu.edu/thelongroadfrombrown/ to learn more.

We the Students Essay Contest

The annual We the Students Essay Contest is underway with the topic this year being What is the relationship between Equity and Justice? Students in grades 8-12 can win one of the 16 prizes totaling $20,000 - including the grand prize of $7,500.  Visit https://billofrightsinstitute.org/we-the-students-essay-contest for details.

Classroom Resources

  • Maine Department of Education Social Studies specialist, Joe Schmidt, has put together a great page of resources and presentations to support educators in engaging students in “courageous conversations about contentious topics.” The page includes webinars, web-based resources, research, toolkits, example ground rules, and more! https://www.maine.gov/doe/learning/content/socialstudies/resources/convo
  • Free website to teach media literacy - Newscompare takes snapshots of major media outlets every hour and compares them side-by-side making it easy to teach media literacy. 
  • The National Parks Service offers the "Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s Legacy of Racial and Social Justice: A Curriculum For Empowerment" -  a teacher's resource guide that provides activities for students in K-8 to explore the rich history of the Civil Rights Movement and Dr. King.
  • Examining Nonviolence in Context - The National Endowment for the Humanities provides a lesson plan for discovering the influences and impact of Dr. King's nonviolent social activism. Let Freedom Ring is a lesson for grades 3-5 and Dr. King's Dream is a lesson for K-2.
  • On This Day: Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day - Life, Death, Legacy contains 6 video clips and lesson guidance from C-SPAN Classroom.
  • The Bill of Rights Institute has released their free digital U.S. history textbook - Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness. The website also has many resources including, teaching about peaceful transitions of power and a webinar series.
  • National Endowment for the Humanities provides a lesson plan focusing on American inaugurations.
  • Library of Congress provides a lesson: Inaugurations:  Stepping into History