Social Studies Newsletter August 2023

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Header: OK Social Studies

August 2023

Welcome Back!

picture of a small chalkboard that says back to school

It is an exciting time! That time of year where teachers are organizing their classrooms, acquiring school supplies, and preparing lessons and learning materials as students get ready to return to class. Hopefully you had a chance to relax and recharge over the summer and possibly took time to learn and collaborate with colleagues. I wish you much success for 2023-24! Here is a link to the Social Studies Frameworks to help you begin the new year. The Social Studies Frameworks contain key concepts, misconceptions, lesson plans, primary and secondary sources, instructional strategies, and formative assessments. 

United States Senate Youth Program

United States Senate Youth Logo

The 62nd Annual United States Senate Youth Program (USSYP) Oklahoma application is open. Two students from each state will be selected to attend the program and each will receive a $10,000 undergraduate college scholarship. Students qualify to apply through leadership positions they currently hold per the USSYP official criteria for the current 2023-24 academic year. Access the USSYP brochure here.

The Oklahoma application can be accessed here and is due by 5:00 p.m. on September 30, 2023. Incomplete or late applications will not be considered. Finalists will be notified by November 1, 2023 and will be required to attend an interview in November 2023.

For additional information contact Brenda Beymer-Chapman

Oklahoma Council for the Social Studies and Teaching American History Workshops

Teaching American History logo

Join the Oklahoma Council for the Social Studies and Teaching American History this fall for two free workshop opportunities for teachers.

The French and Indian War to Revolution, 1754-1776

Friday, September, 22, 2023   8:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m., Cherokee Strip Regional Heritage Center,  507 South 4th, Enid, OK 73701

Discussion Leader: Robert McDonald, Honored Visiting Graduate Faculty at the United States Military Academy

The Seven Year’s War, (known in America as the French and Indian War) caused a change in the world order in colonial America. This great victory for Britain had an unforeseen effect: unraveling the great empire that the 1763 Treaty of Paris codified. This victory will test the Colonists' loyalty to Britain and eventually sets the stage for the American Colonies' resistance to the Crown.

All attendees of this free professional development will receive lunch, a letter of attendance as well as paper and digital copies of the reader. Register here.


Friday, October 6, 2023  8:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m., Tahlequah, OK   

Discussion Leader: William Atto, Honored Visiting Graduate Faculty at the University of Dallas. 

Before the Civil War, the Lincoln Administration turned its attention to the enormous challenge of ‘reconstruction.’ Focusing on reconciliation between North and South also brought seemingly unanswerable questions. What was the political status of the formerly rebellious states? What role should the government play in protecting the new civil rights of freedmen, Blacks, and Unionists in those rebel states? What should happen to the officials and military in the defeated confederacy?

All attendees of this free professional development will receive lunch, a letter of attendance as well as paper and digital copies of the reader. Register here.

Personal Financial Literacy Standards Revision Committee Application

Personal Financial Literacy Logo

The Oklahoma State Department of Education (OSDE) is seeking input from knowledgeable and experienced 9-12th grade personal financial literacy educators, higher education faculty, and community stakeholders to participate in the revision of the Oklahoma Academic Standards for Personal Financial Literacy, as required by 70 O.S. § 11-103.6a. “The subject matter standards shall be thoroughly reviewed by the State Board every six (6) years according to and in coordination with the existing subject area textbook adoption cycle. After review, the State Board shall adopt any revisions in such subject matter standards deemed necessary to achieve further improvements in the quality of education for the students of this state.” The Oklahoma Academic Standards for Personal Financial Literacy were last revised in 2019.

There are two opportunities to serve during the process; the Writing Team will be involved in the actual revision and development of the standards, and the Review Team will be charged with reviewing the draft of the standards and providing critical feedback regarding rigor, coherence, and accessibility. Team members will be selected to serve on the committees ensuring representation from a variety of characteristics, including geography, grade level, subject area, and experience in teaching personal financial literacy.

The Writing Team will meet two days in-person in Oklahoma City and virtually as often as needed to conduct their review and, where necessary, revisions of Oklahoma's Personal Financial Literacy Standards. In-person meetings will be held from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on October 2 and 3rd, 2023. Travel and substitute costs will be covered for K­-12 teachers. 

The Review Team will meet virtually as needed to give feedback concerning the revisions to the Oklahoma Academic Standards for Personal Financial Literacy during the development process. Meetings will be held following the dates of the Writing Team meetings as determined by the availability of the Review Team members.

All Oklahomans interested in participating on the Writing or Review Teams must complete the official application and submit resume no later than 12:00 p.m. on August 28, 2023. Applicants are asked to tentatively protect indicated dates in case they are selected to serve on either team. Apply here.

Please contact Brenda Beymer-Chapman with questions at or 405-522-3523

Set Yourself Up for Success in the 2023 - 2024 School Year

This summer the OSDE elementary team hosted three virtual learning opportunities to prepare Oklahoma educators for success this school year.  The topics for the each session are below along with the presentation slides with resources to help you get off to a great start this year. 

  1. Create connections with students and families. Developing strong relationships inside and outside your classroom will result in more engagement, motivation, and better behavior.  Find family engagement resources from Deb Wade, Project Manager, Family Engagement, and classroom strategies for creating connections for classroom and specials teachers here
  2. Develop effective classroom management techniques. Learn how to set up a functional classroom environment that promotes student independence and easy transitions, consider your potential hot buttons as a teacher, and find some classroom management strategies here
  3.  Get students moving. Put learning in action by getting students moving throughout the day. Find ways to incorporate movement and physical activity in your classroom here

The OSDE Elementary Ed Chat Notes and Resources document includes information about previous OK Elementary Ed Chats.  Look for more information about future Ed Chats coming soon. 

Family Guides

Family Guides picture

These handy, printable flyers include helpful information aligned to the Oklahoma Academic Standards (what students know and should be able to do in each grade and course) and guidance on how to support student learning at home. Guides are available for Pre-K through 6th-grade students in the following subjects: English language arts, science, mathematics, social studies, health, music, physical education (PE) and visual art. The Oklahoma Family Guides are available in both English and Spanish.