Social Studies Scoop

A Monthly Bulletin for 6-12 Social Studies Teachers in CCS

Preparing students for success in college, career, and civic life

Matthew I. Doran

Secondary Social Studies Specialist

Office of Teaching & Learning

Curriculum Division

Southland Center

August 2019

In this edition:

  • Professional Development: High School Department Chair PD
  • Professional Development: Middle School Content Experts PD
  • Curriculum and Instruction: Navigating the Social Studies Website
  • Curriculum and Instruction: Updated Guidebooks for 2019-2020
  • Curriculum and Instruction: Middle School Curriculum Updates
  • Curriculum and Instruction: High School Curriculum Updates
  • State Testing: Ohio's State Test Results
  • Student Programs: Youth at the Booth
  • Student Programs: High School Mock Trial


Welcome to 2019-2020!

Welcome back to a new school year! I am excited to start my nineteenth year in Columbus City Schools, and my fourteenth year serving as Social Studies Curriculum Specialist. I look forward to working with you in curriculum, instruction, professional learning, and student programs throughout the 2019-2020 school-year.

- Matt Doran


High School Department Chair Monthly PD

High School Department Chairs, appointed by the building principals, participate in monthly districtwide professional development meetings. Meetings will be the first Wednesday of each month (except January), 3:30 - 5:30 p.m. at Southland Center, 3700 S. High Street.

  • September 4, 2019
  • October 2, 2019
  • November 6, 2019
  • December 4, 2019
  • January 14, 2020 (combined with MS Content Experts)
  • February 5, 2020
  • March 4, 2020
  • April 1, 2020
  • May 6, 2020

While attendance is required for Department Chairs, all teachers may attend any meeting to receive CEUs.

If you are new to the Department Chair position this year, please contact Matt Doran to have your name added to the contact list.


Middle School Content Experts PD

The Middle School Content Experts professional development program provides an opportunity for teachers to strengthen their Pedagogical Content Knowledge. This year's program will begin in September, with sessions taking place every other month. Meetings will be held on Tuesdays, 4:00 - 6:00 p.m. at Southland Center, 3700 S. High Street.

  • September 17, 2019
  • November 19, 2019
  • January 14, 2020 (combined with HS Department Chairs)
  • March 17, 2020
  • May 19, 2020

All teachers of social studies in grades 6-8 are invited to apply. To apply for the MS Content Experts program, please complete the form here:


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Navigating the CCS Social Studies Website

The CCS Social Studies website is your one-stop shop for social studies curriculum, instructional resources, assessment tools, professional learning opportunities, and student programs. From the homepage,, use the tabs at the top of the page to navigate to each section.

Curriculum Tab

  • This page includes the three core curriculum documents: Curriculum Maps, Clear Learning Targets, and "I Can" Checklists organized in folders by grade band.

Instruction Tab

  • This page provides links to the Course Sites, custom Google site pages created for each grade level/course. This page also includes general instructional resources for each grade band, including textbook companion sites, teacher guidebooks and social studies skills toolkits.

Assessment Tab

  • The assessments page has resource pages for Ohio's State Tests in American History and American Government and a formative assessment tool for all grade levels.

Professional Learning Tab

  • Upcoming PD opportunities and workshop materials are linked from this page.

Newsletters Tab

  • This page contains an archives of the Social Studies Newsletters from recent years. The most recent newsletters are linked on the Social Studies homepage.


Updated Guidebooks for Teaching Middle and High School Social Studies

The Guidebooks for Teaching Middle and High School Social Studies are a quick reference tool to highlight teaching strategies and available resources in CCS. The Guidebooks include five sections: Social Studies Teaching and Learning Strategies, Social Studies Curriculum and Supplemental Resources, CCS Adopted Textbooks and Ancillary Resources, Social Studies Web-Based Resources and Social Studies and Civic Education Student Programs.


Middle School Curriculum Updates

Curriculum Maps and Clear Learning Targets for grades 6-8 have been updated to align with Ohio's Learning Standards for Social Studies (2018).

In addition to minor adjustments in the wording of content statements, and a few additional content statements in grade 8, these documents now incorporate the Ohio Financial Literacy Standards. Financial literacy standards are included in the fourth grading period of each course. Since Ohio does not specify precise grade levels for each standard, CCS Social Studies has divided the standards among the three grade levels.

The revised curriculum documents may be access from the Social Studies curriculum page:


High School Curriculum Updates

The Curriculum Map and Clear Learning Targets for Modern World History 9 have been updated to align with Ohio's Learning Standards for Social Studies (2018).

American History 10 and American Government 11 will continue using the 2010 standards this year. Ohio's State Test re-alignment to the 2018 standards will take place in spring 2021.

Curriculum documents may be access from the Social Studies curriculum page:


State Testing

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Ohio's State Test Results for American History and American Government

As we continue to prepare students for Ohio's State Tests, please make use of the resources available on the Social Studies Assessments webpage. Take note of the following recently added or updated resources:

  • Teachers Guide to the State Tests;
  • American History and American Government Quick Review Guides;
  • Released Test Items by Content Statement (2019 update will be emailed this week);
  • Vocabulary Practice Quizlets;
  • Evidence-Based Sets Practice Assessments; and
  • DocsTeach Historical Thinking Exercises.

Ohio Test provides interactive digital tutorials, activities, and assessments aligned with each unit in the American History and American Government curriculum. These resources can be used in a Blended Learning environment throughout the school-year.


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Youth at the Booth

Since 2006, more than 15,000 high school seniors in Franklin County have made history as the youngest poll workers in Ohio through Kids Voting Central Ohio's Youth at the Booth program.

For those who teach or advise seniors, please encourage your students to consider this opportunity. All paperwork for YAB is available on the Kids Voting Central website: The deadline for completed Student Application/Permission Forms is August 28, 2019. Please note that forms have been updated for 2019. Be sure to download the current forms from the Kids Voting website.


High School Mock Trial 2019-2020

Ohio Mock Trial offers an innovative approach to learning about law and how our legal system functions. Guided by teachers and volunteer legal advisors, students participate in an original, unscripted, simulated trial written by attorneys. High school students argue both sides of the case in real courtrooms. For more information about Mock Trial, see the following webpage:

To compete in the Ohio Mock Trial program, each school needs a team advisor. The advisor position is a supplemental contract granted by the building principal. The pay for the position is established by Article 905.01 (Group B) of the Master Agreement. If you are interested in advising a Mock Trial team at your school, please speak with your building principal regarding this position. Principals should complete the supplemental contract appointment form and submit it to Human Resources. Also, please contact Matt Doran as soon as possible so we can order case materials for your team. The cost of case materials and team competition are covered by the Social Studies Office. Substitute requests should be submitted by the building administration as a "Student Activity Sub" request.