Civitas

A Newsletter for the CCS K-12 Social Studies Community

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Volume 3, Issue 4, Winter 2017


Inside this edition:


  • PD Update: Elementary Social Studies: CCS Educator Day at Ohio History Center
  • PD Update: After-School Workshops
  • PD Update: Middle School Content Experts
  • PD Update: eLearning and Get ConnectED in CCS
  • Curriculum Update: Ohio's State Test (AIR) Preparation
  • Curriculum Update: Elementary Social Studies: Living Wax Museum and Social Studies 4 Standards
  • Student Programs: HS Mock Trial
  • Digital Resources: G-Suite Education and the New Google Sites
  • Digital Resources: INFOhio

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PD Update: Elementary Social Studies: CCS Educator Day at Ohio History Center

Please see the printable PDF flyer linked here for an upcoming opportunity for elementary social studies teachers to learn about the programs and resources available at the Ohio History Center (formerly known as the Ohio Historical Society).


This workshop is available for registration on CiMS - http://columbus.schoolnet.com (keyword search Ohio History Center).


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PD Update: After-School Workshops

There are two remaining after-school social studies workshops for this school year.


  • Engaging Economics has been moved from January 24 to February 21, 2017 due to a conflict with the State of the District event. The workshop location has also changed to Linmoor Education Center (2001 Hamilton Ave). The middle school session will be 3:30 - 5:30 and the elementary session from 4:30 - 6:30 p.m. Registration is available on CiMS: http://columbus.schoolnet.com.


  • Differentiation Strategies for Social Studies, Grades 3-12 will be March 21, 2017 at Hudson Distribution Center. The Middle/High session will be 3:30 - 5:30 and the elementary session from 4:30 - 6:30 p.m. Registration is available in CiMS.

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PD Update: Middle School Content Experts Program

The Middle School Content Experts PD began January 10 at Linmoor Education Center. This program is designed to strengthen teachers' Pedagogical Content Knowledge.


The Social Studies Content Experts PD provides a differentiated PD experience. Based on the results of a pre-survey, teachers participate in blended learning activities in Google Classroom and in-person collaborations within grade levels.


Middle School Content Experts will also be working to develop new instructional resources and professional development presentations for CCS. These resources will be published on the web for all CCS teachers to access.


The remaining dates are February 9, March 7, and April 4; 4:00 - 6:00 p.m. at Linmoor Education Center.


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PD Update: Get ConnectED in CCS

Professional Learning and Licensure and the CCS eLearning Committee are planning another Get ConnectED in CCS!


Mark your calendars for March 4, 2017 from 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. at Columbus Spanish Immersion Academy. You can sign up for this event on CiMS, and CEUs will be available.


We are now seeking presenters! There are three types of presentations:

  • Demo Slam: 2-3 minute presentation/$25 stipend
  • Table Talk: 15 minute presentation/$50 stipend
  • Mini-Session: 45 minute presentation/$125 stipend


Presentation Proposals are due by Wednesday, February 1st. The application and more information for presenters may be found at: Get ConnectED March, 2017 Presentation Proposal


A glimpse of Get ConnectED in CCS held August, 2016 can be seen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=weY4mavhcXM


If you have any questions or comments, please contact Karmen McCaslin at kmccasli@columbus.k12.oh.us or any member of the eLearning Committee (http://www.ccsoh.us/eLearning.aspx).


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Curriculum Update: Ohio's State Test (AIR) Preparation

The testing window for Ohio's State Tests in Social Studies is quickly approaching. The CCS Social Studies website has a resource page for state tests: http://www.ccsoh.us/SSAssessments.aspx. This page includes released test items, the Teachers Guides to the state tests, and links to student practice sites.


Earlier in the year, we devoted a complete edition of the Civitas newsletter to state test preparation. You can access the newsletter here.


This month, we have published a new document, "Teaching for Mastery of Ohio's State Tests in Social Studies." It includes eight strategies for promoting mastery of the learning targets and test questions. You can access the document here.


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Curriculum Update: Elementary Social Studies: Living Wax Museum and Social Studies 4 Standards

Many CCS elementary schools celebrate Black History Month by having students create a Living Wax Museum. In a Living Wax Museum students research and portray the contributions of famous or not so famous African Americans.


The Living Wax Museum also provides the perfect opportunity to teach Grade 4 standards that help prepare students for the Social Studies AIR Test.


See the chart linked here for ideas on how to connect Living Wax Museum themes to Ohio's State standards. The chart provides a theme, vocabulary, main idea questions, and examples that you could add to your existing Living Wax Museum project.



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Student Programs: Mock Trial

The CCS High School Mock Trial teams will compete in the district competition on January 20 at the Franklin County Courthouse. Good luck to the following teams and their advisors!


  • Centennial HS - Brady McCullough
  • Columbus Alternative HS - Steve Murray
  • Columbus Downtown HS - Brandy O'Hearn
  • Columbus North International - Jim Worden
  • Ft. Hayes Arts & Academic HS - Jeff Chopko
  • Marion-Franklin HS - Andrew Brower
  • Northland HS - Tom Gibson
  • South HS - Stuart Leo
  • Whetstone HS - Karen Ballmer



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CCS G-Suite for Education and the New Google Sites

Did you know that your CCS email address works as a Google sign-in? CCS is a G-Suite for Education (formerly Google Apps for Education) site. Go to Google.com (not Gmail.com) and sign-in with your CCS email address (including the @columbus.k12.oh.us) and password. You have unlimited file storage in Google Drive. You also have access to a full suite of Google Apps including Docs, Forms, Slides, Sheets, Sites, Google Classroom, YouTube, and more.


Google Sites has recently released an updated version that provides a better web-design experience - visually appealing layouts and drag-and-drop editor. The New Google Sites is also integrated into the Google Drive storage system. To get started with the New Google Sites, go to: http://sites.google.com/new.



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INFOhio: Ohio's PreK-12 Digital Library

INFOhio transforms teaching and learning by connecting educational resources with the power of information technology.


INFOhio's extensive digital collections and databases are free for Ohio teachers and students. If you are working from a district computer or public library, you will automatically be logged-in. If you are working from home, you will need to use the district username and password.


Social Studies teachers may be especially interested in the following resources from INFOhio:



CCS Social Studies Coordinators Matt Doran and Lynda Ray are certified INFOhio I-Coaches and can provide on-site professional development and support for your school or classroom.


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Columbus City Schools Social Studies

Mission: Support, build capacity, and empower all members of the teaching and learning community to increase student achievement


Matt Doran, 6-12 Social Studies Coordinator

Lynda Ray, K-5 Social Studies Coordinator

Chris Weatherholtz, K-5 Science/Social Studies Coordinator