The Social Studies Connection

More than a Newsletter for Secondary Social Studies Teachers

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

If you missed last month's edition of the Social Studies Connection, click here.

Matthew I. Doran

Secondary Social Studies Specialist

Office of Teaching & Learning

Curriculum Division

Southland Center

January 2022

In this edition:

  • Professional Development: January 18 PD Day
  • Curriculum and Instruction: TCI Survey Follow-up
  • Curriculum and Instruction: Accessing TCI in 3 Easy Steps
  • Curriculum and Instruction: TCI Implementation Home Base
  • Curriculum and Instruction: TCI Strategy of the Month
  • Student Programs: JA Career Adventures for Grade 6
  • Student Programs: Kids Voting Ohio Scholarship Opportunity
  • External Professional Development: National Council for History Education Conference
  • External Professional Development: Summer Opportunities


January 18 Secondary Curriculum PD Day

The Secondary Curriculum Division will host sessions on the districtwide January 18 Professional Development Day. The focus will be on literacy, disciplinary literacy, and core textbook/platform adoption implementation.

In addition to the keynote speaker on literacy, there will be literacy sessions and social studies sessions. Teachers should choose at least one literacy session (content or general) during the day.

Social Studies sessions will include:

  • From Literacy to Disciplinary Literacy in Secondary Social Studies
  • Introduction to TCI - Beginners Session
  • Digging Deeper with Social Studies Teaching and Learning Strategies
  • TCI Content and Disciplinary Literacy
  • ESL Strategies for Social Studies
  • Getting Started with TCI Social Studies Program (On-Demand)
  • Creating a Cooperative, Inclusive Classroom with TCI (On-Demand)

Literacy sessions will include:

  • Achieve3000 Basic Training
  • Achieve3000 Diving Deeper
  • What is Disciplinary Literacy? What does it have to do with my classroom?
  • The Science of Reading for Adolescent Learners
  • Cross Content Principles and Disciplinary Literacy

There is no pre-registration required for sessions. A complete schedule with session times and Zoom links will be sent by email.


TCI Survey Follow-up

In December, social studies teachers were asked to respond to a survey on TCI implementation for first semester.

Survey results indicate that 60 percent of respondents are using TCI lesson materials to prepare classroom instruction at least once a week, with 37.5 percent indicating use 3-5 days per week. About 46 percent of responding teachers use the digital platform to assign student work, with 21.6 percent creating assignments 3-5 days per week. Student hard copy materials are used by about 36 percent of responding teachers.

TCI is the District-adopted (and funded) textbook and learning platform. Therefore, we want to take additional steps to increase the fidelity of implementation in this initiation year and beyond. A variety of reasons were cited by respondents who are not regularly using TCI. These include: use of own materials, lack of time to learn something new, unsure how to access TCI, and need for additional PD on TCI strategies. Some of these challenges can be mitigated through the ongoing digital resources (see information below) and upcoming professional development (see information above).


Accessing TCI in Three Easy Steps

To get started with your TCI subscription, follow these steps.

1. Log-in to CCS Clever.

2. Open the TCI Subscription App.
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3. Click on the orange Teach Now button and use the left side menu to access teaching materials. Use the Lesson Guides for digital resources and Materials section for printable PDFs.
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TCI Implementation Home Base

We have created a custom CCS TCI Home Base page to help teachers implement the TCI resources and pedagogy. The Home Base provides tools for Getting Started with TCI, TCI by Grade Level for Middle School, TCI by Course for High School, and TCI Six Active Learning Strategies.

Access the CCS TCI Home Base page here.


TCI Interactive Guidebook

The interactive version of TCI's Bring Learning Alive! guidebook provides step-by-step tutorials and examples for implementing TCI's lesson cycle, including the active learning strategies and notetaking strategies.

The interactive guidebook divides each chapter into a separate PDF file for easier viewing/scrolling. You will need to log in to your CCS Google account to access the chapters.

Click on the image below to access the interactive guidebook.


TCI Strategy of the Month: Problem Solving Groupwork

Each month we will focus on one of the six TCI active learning strategies. The January strategy is Problem Solving Groupwork.

Problem Solving Groupwork activities teach students the skills necessary to work together successfully in small groups, both in the classroom and later in life. During Problem Solving

Groupwork tasks, students work on challenging projects, such as preparing a historical dramatization.

The projects are carefully designed to require the use of multiple abilities, with the idea that every student will be able to contribute. Within a group, each student takes a well-defined role—such as researcher, stage manager, director, or script writer. During the task, the teacher serves as a resource and checks on group progress. After completing their task, groups present their products to the class.

The five steps for implementing Problem Solving Groupwork:

  1. Challenge students with engaging, multiple-ability projects.
  2. Prepare all students for successful groupwork.
  3. Give group members clearly defined roles and requirements.
  4. Give groups autonomy and time to prepare high-quality products.
  5. Have groups present their work.

For more detailed, step-by-step guidance on Problem Solving Groupwork implementation, see the Interactive TCI Guidebook link above.

To find the Problem Solving Groupwork lessons in your TCI program, click on the Content tab on the left menu. Under the Modify View button, be sure the Teaching Strategy box is checked.

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Junior Achievement Career Adventures for Grade 6

The JA Career Adventures encourage students to determine WHO they want to be before they can figure out WHAT they want to be! Students are encouraged to “be open to exploring ALL OF THE THINGS that make you so fantastically, extraordinarily YOU!”

There is no cost to participate in this program. The program was released in November and available, per each teacher's schedule, until mid-June.

Our philosophy is that we can only teach kids who want to be taught so the Adventures are intentionally fun, engaging, colorful, surprising, positive and easy-to-read. Based on teacher feedback from last year, the JA Career Adventures also includes voice-over narration for students who may struggle reading.
  • Students use a Venn Diagram as they discover their Personality, Skills, Interests and Values. The intersection of those four circles is their Happy Place: a successful rewarding career
  • Students navigate ten lessons about Career Readiness and Financial Literacy, then participate in a Holland Codes Interests Survey. Based on the results of the survey, students are directed to investigate Career Clusters
  • Students see how their education affects their career which affects their lifestyle
  • Program includes vocabulary words, quizzes, scavenger hunts, videos, stickers, GIFs, Fun Facts and Things You Can Do Now suggestions!

Link to the JA Career Adventures Demo (teachers must sign into the lead form to access)

Link to the JA Career Adventures Teacher's Guide

Link to the JA Career Adventures Standards Alignment

JA Career Adventures Registration


Pete Crozier

Vice President, Innovative Program Development

Junior Achievement of Central Ohio

68 E. Second Avenue | Columbus, OH 43201

614.704.2532 |


Kids Voting Ohio Scholarship Opportunity

Kids Voting Ohio is pleased to announce the Kids Voting Ohio’s Exemplar Citizen Scholarship. As a Kids Voting Ohio school in Central Ohio, your students are eligible for this opportunity. Sponsored by the Educational Service Center of Central Ohio, the Exemplar Citizen Award offers $500 scholarships to ten civically engaged graduating seniors involved in Kids Voting Ohio Programs.

Two different Exemplar Citizen Scholarship opportunities are offered at this time. One is focused on Merit and the other is focused on writing skill, students can apply for both but are only eligible to receive one. To learn about more about the scholarship rubrics and to see if your students are eligible, please visit or reach out by email to

The application deadline is February 1, 2022.



National Council for History Education Conference

The National Council for History Education Online Conference will be held March 17-20, 2022. The conference features keynote speakers, breakout sessions on history content and pedagogy, and virtual field trips to museums.

Keynote speakers include Alexis Coe, Peniel Joseph, Peter Kastor, LaGarrett King, and Merry Wiesner-Hanks.

Conference sessions are recorded and can be viewed after the conclusion of the conference.

To apply for the CCS/CEA Professional Leave fund for this conference, see the guidelines and deadlines here. Use the form here to apply to the Professional Leave fund.

To register for the conference, go to:

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Summer PD Opportunities

Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge has been offering critically acclaimed teacher summer courses for more than 50 years. Nearly 14,000 educators, librarians, resource and special education teachers from around the world have participated in our programs with nationally recognized scholars who provide engaging, entertaining and interactive lectures. All programs are accredited through LaSalle University.

Click here for more information.


National Endowment for the Humanities offers tuition-free opportunities for K-12 educators and higher education faculty to study a variety of humanities topics. Stipends of $1300-$3450 for residential programs and $650-$1725 for virtual programs help cover expenses for these one- to four-week programs. Applications for all programs close on March 1, 2022.

Click here for program offerings.


Every summer, the National Constitution Center hosts educators from across the country in its summer institute series, bringing together top educators and ideologically diverse constitutional scholars. Educators work with content experts throughout these programs to deepen their knowledge of constitutional topics, and their historical contexts and modern understandings. While working with teacher facilitators and the Center's education team, participants discover and develop innovative, nonpartisan ways to make the content relevant to their students. Educators gain new content knowledge, teaching tools, classroom-ready resources, and skills for improving constitutional literacy. Applications for the 2022 Summer Educator Institutes are open until Friday, February 25, 2022.

Click here for program information.