Social Studies Insider

September 2019

Sailing to Success!

It's been a great start across all CCSS schools! Please continue to utilize the resources provided and shared across our district via the Google Classroom. I commend your collaboration efforts as they will directly impact our districts' students immensely. As you continue working towards achieving your goals and plans for the 2019-2020 school year, please reach out to Phil Sykes if comments, questions, and/or needs arise. I look forward to supporting you in and outside of your classrooms and am always available to work with you during your planning hour or even within your instructional periods. If interested in a meeting or class visit, please complete the form by clicking the button below. Keep up the great work!

Updated Social Studies Curriculum Website

Please take time to explore the newly organized and updated Social Studies Curriculum Website. Various Georgia D.O.E. resources have been linked including Georgia Standards of Excellence, Teacher Notes, and supplemental resources. District pacing guides have also been included to help guide your instruction throughout the year. Additionally, teachers in grades 3-8 can expect additional Gallopade Clickbook resources/outlines to be added to the specific grade level folders regularly. If any questions are had, please feel free to contact Phil Sykes. Click on the image below to access the Social Studies Website.

Utilize Our Network of Social Studies Professionals

If you haven't already joined, wait no longer! You do not want to continue missing out on the great things teachers are sharing and discussing on Google Classroom. Utilize this platform to collaborate, distribute, and collect new teaching resources to add to your teaching toolbox.
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Gallopade Clickbook (Grades 3-8)

Teachers, our Clickbook Resource Grade Level Committees are continuing to develop resources that can be utilized as you implement the Clickbook into your classroom lessons. If you are having trouble with Gallopade or need specific assistance, please reach out to Phil Sykes. I am happy to set time aside to meet with you before, during, or after school to support your needs. For quick access to the pre-developed Gallopade Clickbook outline resources, please click on the button below.

Gallopade Toolbox: Reading and Writing Activities

Please view the following excel sheet to access various leveled readers and writing activities that can be located within specific Toolboxes. At the bottom of the document, you will see grade level tabs. Click on your respective grade level tab and you will find specific pages in which reading and writing resources can be located.

Active Classroom: Potential High School Digital Resource

Attention High School Teachers:

Are you looking for predeveloped resources, activities, and assessments? If so, consider signing up for Active Classroom's FREE 30-day trial. The platform will give all social studies content areas access to predeveloped powerpoints, primary resources, images, maps, activities, and assessments that can be used to supplement your classroom instruction. If you sign up for the FREE trial, please contact me and let me know your thoughts. I am actively looking for a digital resource that can be acquired by the district to support the needs of all high school teachers and students. If interested in registering for a FREE 30-day trial, click the image logo below.

Social Studies Digital Resource Tools:

Attention all social studies teachers: If you know of a great digital resource that helps elevate your social studies lessons and should be added to the Digital Resource Tools List, please share that with phillip.sykes@cowetaschools.net or via your district social studies Google Classroom. Content Specialists are constantly looking for helpful "go-to" tools that will help increase 21st-century skills, created genuine engagement, and immerse students in opportunities that require critical thinking. To access the current list, please click the button below.
New to the List this Month: ClassKick

ClassKick allows you to create an online learning space that promotes the creation of interactive, manipulative, and engaging presentations. Both students and teachers can utilize this resource to present information. Teachers can use the system to manage student work, provide immediate feedback, and monitor student screens in realtime.

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Preparing for Constitution Day?

Whether you teach K-5, middle, or high school students, the constitution and the process our founding fathers went through to develop it can make for great discussion. Constitution Day is September 17th; click the button below to access a wide range of Constitution Day resources to help provide valuable lessons focusing around one of our nation's (and really the world's) most treasured primary documents!
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D.O.E. Constitution Day Activity Resources

Scroll down to the section dedicated to Consitution Day.

Remembering Sept. 11, 2001: A Student Friendly Resource

Teaching September 11th can be a difficult task for many teachers. The content is violent and extremely difficult for children to fully understand without getting bogged down by the gruesome details of that terrible September day. Nick News, hosted by Linda Ellerbee, is an objective educational news program that has safely navigated the waters during critical events in our recent history. Ellerbee provides a focused and "to the point" explanation of what happened during various critical events that remain age-appropriate. If you will be including a discussion on September 11th within your social studies lessons this month, consider using this video as a guide. Click the image below to access Nick News: What Happened: The Story of September 11, 2001.

Spotlighting Excellence

Michelle Flanagan, Welch Elementary, 3rd Grade:

Ms. Flanagan has been serving as an EIP teacher at Welch Elementary School for the last few years. This year, she has moved back into the 3rd-grade classroom as well as serving as the grade level chair for 3rd grade. In her role as EIP lead teacher, she played a large part in helping all grade levels disaggregate the data from both the STAR Reading and STAR Math tests. With data and data analysis playing a larger role in education, her efforts have helped Welch become a school that drives instruction to maximize student learning based on data reports.


Also in her role as Lead EIP teacher, she has helped each grade level set up their skills group classes so that each teacher understands the weaknesses and strengths of each student group. This has significantly helped teachers better educate the students within their classrooms resulting in increased levels of student achievement.


Since moving back to third grade she has been instrumental in helping with curriculum maps, grade level data, and helping new teachers feel welcome at our school. Additionally, Ms. Flanagan is helping to create supplemental resources for all district teachers in an attempt to make the adoption of Clickbook easier and more effective for all. Additionally, she has been phenomenal in working with parents and students and is a true asset to our school and community.

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Brandy Davis, East Coweta Middle School, 8th Grade:

Ms. Davis is an incredible educator who impacts the future on a daily basis, not only within her classroom, but also as a cheer coach and as a mentor to many high-risk students. She has consistently been a team player and willing to take on various new challenges by frequently changing both grade level and subject area. She has played an instrumental role in the social studies curriculum roll-out this year by creating various print resources aligned to Gallopade’s online curriculum to be shared county-wide. As an educational innovator, she frequently demonstrates unique, collaborative ways to incorporate technology into her classroom. Her students are able to demonstrate their learning in a variety of methods to help them not only master the standards, but also “take ownership” over their learning, display creativity, and enjoy a classroom that exudes a sound learning experience, as well as the opportunity to take academic risks within a safe, cooperative environment.

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Elizabeth Thompson, East Coweta High School, US History:

East Coweta High School has a true gem among its proud faculty in Ms. Elizabeth Thompson. Elizabeth brings infectious energy every day to her US. History classes where she engages her students to learn and think outside the box. Her motivation is centered around student growth, and to provide her entire social studies department with the necessary tools to help them become the best teachers that they can be. As department chair, Elizabeth has been instrumental in spearheading a new curriculum to all Coweta County high schools that strategically align with state standards to enhance the "total student experience" for Social Studies. Her hard work and dedication is seen daily and was recognized last year by the Bright Ideas Grant committee when she was awarded with the funding of her Social Studies Escape Room kit. Additionally, she developed a student-sized Trivial Pursuit board that has helped increase student participation and engagement during review sessions. Simply put, Mrs. Elizabeth Thompson is the epitome of what an excellent teacher is all about; you can always count on seeing her radiant smile every day at the intersection of Brantley and Longstreet. As students transition from class to class, she remains ready to attack the day and make all those who pass by her proud to be an EC Indian.

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Attention Elementary Social Studies Teachers:

Please see the schedule below for regular social studies curriculum meetings.


Grade Level/Course Specific Professional Learning with Virtual Specialists

Introducing a new FREE online professional learning community exclusively for Georgia educators. The Georgia DOE has created course and grade level specific Professional Learning Communities, led by Virtual Specialists, where educators from across the State can connect with each other to share experiences, resources, lesson plans, and instructional activities.

Join the Online Community

Schedule for Monthly Webinars​


Integrating Social Studies into your ELA/Reading Lessons Made Easy

Located within the GA DOE Teacher Notes, teachers can find a list of standards connected books that can easily be integrated into your ELA/Reading lessons.

For Kindergarten access, Click Here.

For 1st Grade access, Click Here.

For 2nd Grade access, Click Here.

For 3rd Grade access, Click Here.

For 4th Grade access, Click Here.

For 5th Grade access, Click Here.


FieldTrip Zoom

FieldTrip Zoom provides you with an online catalog that allows you to search, order, schedule, and connect to hundreds of live interactive programs from around the world. These STEAM focused programs provide your students with unique and engaging learning experiences that can be customized to supplement your in-class curriculum. To view available programs, Click Here. Contact our representative for more information: Click Here. Yearly subscription cost per year, per teacher- $50.


Georgia Public Broadcasting

Click Here to access various social studies resources provided by Georgia Public Broadcasting.


Additional professional development opportunities are located within the section titled Professional Development for All.

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Attention Middle School Social Studies:

Grade Level/Course Specific Professional Learning with Virtual Specialists

Introducing a new FREE online professional learning community exclusively for Georgia educators. The Georgia DOE has created course and grade level specific Professional Learning Communities, led by Virtual Specialists, where educators from across the State can connect with each other to share experiences, resources, lesson plans, and instructional activities.

Join the Online Community

Schedule for Monthly Webinars​


Please look at your calendars and plan to join fellow district middle school social studies teachers each month for "middle grades tailored" professional learning. This is a great opportunity to communicate, collaborate, and create consistency across the district. Meeting locations will be held at WERZ, Central Office and begin around 4 pm. Our first meeting will be held September 25th, see you then!

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Attention High School Social Studies Teachers:

Regular meetings are in the works for High School Social Studies Departments. More information will be posted in the High School Google Classroom. Please be on the lookout for that information.


Additional professional development opportunities are located within the section titled Professional Development for All.


United States Senate Youth Program

The United States Senate Youth Program, established in 1962 by U.S. Senate Resolution, is a unique educational experience for outstanding high school students interested in pursuing careers in public service. The 58th annual program will be held in Washington, D.C., from March 7 – 14, 2020.


Two student leaders from each state, the District of Columbia and the Department of Defense Education Activity will spend a week in Washington experiencing their national government in action. Student delegates will hear major policy addresses by senators, cabinet members, officials from the Departments of State and Defense and directors of other federal agencies, as well as participate in meetings with the president and a justice of the U.S. Supreme Court. All transportation, hotel and meal expenses will be provided by The Hearst Foundations. In addition, each delegate will also be awarded a $10,000 college scholarship for undergraduate studies, with encouragement to pursue coursework in history and political science. To apply, please contact your state selection contact. Application Due Date: October 4, 2019.


Grade Level/Course Specific Professional Learning with Virtual Specialists

Introducing a new FREE online professional learning community exclusively for Georgia educators. The Georgia DOE has created course and grade level specific Professional Learning Communities, led by Virtual Specialists, where educators from across the State can connect with each other to share experiences, resources, lesson plans, and instructional activities.

Join the Online Community

Schedule for Monthly Webinars​


Civic Engagement Diploma Seal Program

Please begin advertising this program to students. Last year, East Coweta High School honored several seniors who accomplished the criteria required in order to gain diploma endorsement. I would love to see more Coweta students gain this recognition.

Criteria and Application Information

Network Connectors

Looking to connect with others in the Social Studies field? Utilize the links below to connect with various organizations that may provide expertise and resources to better your professional networks.


Connect with Georgia's virtual learning community for Social Studies

Georgia Council for the Social Studies

Georgia Council on Economic Education

Georgia Historical Society

Georgia WWI Commission

National Council for History Education

Newnan-Coweta Historical Society

Professional Learning for All

GCEE High School 2020 Workshop (Grades 9-12)

Friday, Sep. 13th, 8:30am-3pm

Werz Industrial Boulevard Newnan, GA

This workshop for high school teachers includes six new lessons with materials designed to teach components of all five domains in the High School Economics GSE. Exchange rates, trade barriers, circular flow, factors of production, sustainability, and other key concepts are taught through interactive lessons that are provided at no charge for teachers at the end of the workshop.


FYI: Substitute Costs will be reimbursed and lunch will be provided.


Want to register? Click Here

Gallopade Question & Answer Session

Thursday, Sep. 12th, 4-5pm

Werz Industrial Boulevard

Newnan, GA

Do you have questions about Gallopade Clickbook? Are you looking for some additional training/support incorporating Clickbook into your classroom lessons? If so, plan to attend the Gallopade Q & A session at WERZ. I will work with you on an individual basis to help set you and your students up for success. Please register by completing the following form.


Want to Register? Click Here

S3Strategies Presents: Revving Review - U.S. History EOCT Prep

Wednesday, Oct. 2nd, 8:30am-4pm

Werz Industrial Boulevard

Newnan, GA

Maximize student achievement on the Georgia Milestone Assessments in U.S. History through the use of learner-centered strategies designed to not only review but also diagnose student knowledge gaps. Activate higher-ordered thinking and require students to make applications and connections. Challenge students to understand the significance of the events and identified individuals in the Georgia Standards of Excellence. Experience and receive intensive review materials designed to support student retention of the critical content and necessary skills to build student comfort and confidence. These materials energize teachers to equip their students to peak their test scores.


Want to Register? Click Here

Georgia Council for the Social Studies Conference

Thursday, Oct. 10th, 8am to Friday, Oct. 11th, 2pm

300 North Thomas Street

Athens, GA

Register today! Don't miss this professional learning opportunity that provides insight and resources focusing around the Georgia Standards of Excellence in Social Studies.


You may register online by visiting www.gcss.net.

Historical Thinking + Literacy = K-5 Social Studies Labs

Wednesday, Oct. 16th, 9am-3:30pm

99 Brown School Drive

Grantville, GA

Join West Georgia RESA as they host JoAnn Wood from the DOE explore historical thinking and literacy. During this interactive workshop, teachers will learn how to dissect a good history lab​ for primary grades to examine its anatomy. Teachers will experiment with a sample lab and then cook up their own, making sure to mix their history activities thoroughly with literacy skills.​


Want to register? Click Here

Bringing Excitement Back to Your Middle and High School Social Studies Classes (Grades 6-12)

Wednesday, Oct. 16th, 9am-3:30pm

99 Brown School Drive

Grantville, GA

Join teachers from our region at West Georgia RESA for an exciting workshop that will leave you energized and ready to teach social studies. In this interactive session, teachers will work with Joy Hatcher, GaDOE Social Studies Program Manager, to meet your daily required dose of inquiry and keep students on their mental toes. Ideas and resources for infusing inquiry and banishing apathy in grades 6-12 will be shared; bring your own and take home some new ones.


Want to Register? Click Here

GCEE Financial Literacy for Middle Grades

Thursday, Nov. 7th, 8:30am-3pm

Werz Industrial Boulevard

Newnan, GA

While only a small portion of the middle school Georgia Standards of Excellence, personal financial literacy is a lifelong skill-set that can – and should – be taught at multiple ages. This workshop delivers content and new lesson plans written by Georgia teachers designed to engage middle school students and help them understand personal financial literacy from a variety of angles.


FYI: Substitute Costs will be reimbursed and lunch will be provided.


Want to register? Click Here

GCEE Decostar Factory Tour and Workshop (Grades 6-12)

Monday, Nov. 18th, 8:30am-3:30pm

Carrollton, GA, USA

Carrollton, GA

Decostar, is a division of Canadian-based Magna, a diversified automotive supplier. In the Carrollton facility, Decostar manufactures and paints automotive front and rear fascia and bumpers for Mercedes, BMW, Nissan and Volkswagen. This workshop will feature a tour of the facility in addition to demos of lessons from GCEE’s popular American Made series of lessons.


FYI: Substitute Costs will be reimbursed and lunch will be provided.


Want to register? Click Here

Comments, Concerns, Questions?

Please contact Phil Sykes, Social Studies Content Specialist, with any questions, comments, or concerns.