Social Studies Scoop

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

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

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February 2019

In this edition:

Professional Learning
  • PD Survey
  • Middle School Content Experts PD
  • Get ConnectED in CCS: Empowering Learners

Curriculum and Instruction
  • Black History Month

Ohio's State Tests
  • Edulastic Assessments for American History & American Government
  • Level-Up Newsletters

Student Programs
  • Mock Trial Recognition
  • Northland Law Class Public Policy Proposals
  • Spring Debate

External Professional Development
  • History and Literature Summer Seminars
  • DBQ Workshop at Bowling Green


PD Survey

Please complete this brief survey to share your ideas regarding social studies professional learning.


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Middle School Content Experts PD 2019

The Middle School Content Experts began year 3 with our first meeting on January 15 at Southland Center, 3700 S. High Street. Designed to help refine teachers' Pedagogical Content Knowledge, this year's program is focused on disciplinary thinking skills within the C3 Framework.

In session 1, we began by sharing about our formative experiences as social studies students. Teachers shared stories about classes that inspired them and shaped their thinking about social studies education. Next, we examined three pedagogical models of social studies: Citizenship Transmission, Social Science Disciplinary Tools, and Reflective Inquiry (Pragmatism). (See the file below for more details.) Session 1 concluded with a Kahoot review and prizes awarded.

Session 2 will have participants collaborating on strategies to meet disciplinary thinking skills for History and Geography.

Remaining Content Expert meetings will be held: February 12, March 12, April 9, May 7. All meetings are 4:00 - 6:00 p.m. The location will be announced to participants via email.


Get ConnectED in CCS: Empowering Learners

Join us for Get ConnectED in CCS: Empowering Learners on March 23. Register now on PDS.
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Curriculum & Instruction

Black History Month Resources

Teaching Hard History

The Southern Poverty Law Center's Teaching Tolerance Initiative has recently released a new report and curriculum materials on teaching the central role that slavery played in the development of the United States. You can read more about the report here: and access the curriculum materials (aligned with the C3 Framework) here:

Teaching Hard History is led by Professor Hasan Jeffries of The Ohio State University. Dr. Jeffries has been a long-time friend to the CCS Social Studies Department through his work with our Teaching American History grants and Urban Studies Institute. You can access his past presentations through the History Speaks website and Urban Studies Institute page.


Do's and Don'ts

Teaching Tolerance also has a good list of Do's and Don'ts for Black History Month here.


Newsela: Making Things That Change The World: STEAM & The Black Experience

Newsela had created lesson plans and text sets for Black History month that help students understand what systemic racism is and how it affects the lives of people of color all over the world. Lessons focus on African-American achievements in STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art + design, and math). You can access these free lessons and readings here:


Local African-American History

To incorporate local African-American history, check out the Teaching Columbus Blog: Unsung Heroes, Ordinary People, and Local Triumphs. Topics address include the Underground Railroad in Columbus, King-Lincoln and the Harlem Renaissance, and the desegregation of Columbus Schools.


Ohio's State Tests

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New Edulastic Assessments for American History and American Government

Formative assessments aligned with each lesson in the CCS American History and American Government curricula are now available on Edulastic. You can access these assessments from the learning modules on Ohio Test Prep or using the direct links below. The assessments can be used for practice by clicking on the green "Preview" button in the upper right corner. No log-in is required to practice. Alternatively, teachers can copy the assignments to their own classes using the blue "Assign to your class" button. Students can use their Google accounts to log-in.

American History

American Government


Level-Up Weekly Newsletter

Be sure to check your email each of the next six weeks for the weekly Level-Up newsletter. This newsletter highlights best practices for preparing students for Ohio's State Tests in Social Studies. The first edition is available here.


Student Programs

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High School Mock Trial

Congratulations to all the teams who participated in the Ohio Mock Trial competition on January 18.

Special kudos to Centennial HS (Brady McCullough, advisor) for advancing to the regional competition on February 15!

Individual awards from CCS included:

Centennial HS

Tyler Morefield - Outstanding Attorney

Meena Kalil - Outstanding Witness

Columbus North International (Leanne Sunderman, advisor)

Jerimiah Pinkins - Outstanding Attorney

Washington Cole - Outstanding Witness

Whetstone HS (Karen Ballmer, Bethany Bell, advisors)

Audrey Beers - Outstanding Attorney
Maddy Burns - Outstanding Witness
Grace Djaodo - Outstanding Witness
Megan Harrison - Outstanding Witness

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Whetstone Mock Trial Teams

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Columbus North International Mock Trial Team


Northand Law Class Public Policy Proposals

Students in Tom Gibson's Law class at Northand HS recently met with State Representative Bernadine Kennedy Kent to share public policy recommendations. Rep. Kent was impressed with the students' ideas and has her staff working on drafts of bills. If the bills make it to committee, students will be invited to attend and testify at the hearings.

The meeting resulted from letters students wrote to Rep. Kent to encourage her support of the bill to modify graduation requirements for the classes of 2019 and 2020.

Congratulations Tom and Northland students for taking informed civic action!

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Northland HS Law Class with State Rep. Kent


Spring HS Policy Debate Competition

The spring debate competition will be Thursday, April 18th at Capital University. Students will debate the resolution:

  • Resolved: The Columbus City School District should reduce the number of schools it operates.

For resources and registration information, check out the Spring 2019 Debate folder:


External Professional Development

Leveraging Literacy in Social Studies and Language Arts: Evidence-Based Writing with the DBQ Project

Saturday, February 23 | 8:30 a.m.-2 p.m. | 203 Education, Bowling Green State University


Teaching American's 2019 History and Literature Summer Seminars is pleased to announce the return of our American History and American Literature summer seminars. Our History & Literature seminars aim to encourage the cross-curricular study of key themes in American history by examining both historical documents and literary texts.

Open to both Social Studies, History, and English/Language Arts teachers at any level, the seminars will delve into the history and meaning of America through the words of historical figures great and small, as well as through the prose and verse of the nation’s writers.

Session 1: The Civil War in American History & Literature - July 7 to July 12, 2019

Session 2: The World Wars in American History and Literature - July 14 to July 19, 2019

Each seminar will be taught by a historian or political scientist teamed with a literary scholar. Classes can be completed for 2 hours of graduate credit at Ashland University ($1,156), or audited ($578). Additionally, room and board is available for $475.

Click here to learn more and register.


Matthew I. Doran

Secondary Social Studies Specialist

Office of Teaching & Learning

Curriculum Division

Southland Center

3700 S. High Street

Suite 125