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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August 2018

In this edition:

  • Teacher Recognition: Jennifer LaPlace, District 6 Teacher of the Year
  • Curriculum and Instruction: Navigating the Social Studies Website
  • Curriculum and Instruction: Updated Guidebooks
  • Curriculum and Instruction: HS American History Curriculum Updates
  • State Testing: Ohio's State Test Results
  • Student Programs: Youth at the Booth
  • Student Programs: High School Mock Trial


Jennifer LaPlace Named 2019 Teacher of the Year for State Board of Education District 6

Congratulations to Jennifer LaPlace who was recently named the 2019 Teacher of the Year for State Board of Education District 6! Jennifer teaches world history, humanities, and AP Government at Centennial High School. Read the full press release about Jennifer's recognition here. Click here to read an article about Jennifer's recognition in This Week News.

Jennifer has taught in CCS since 1998. In addition to her classroom responsibilities, Jennifer has been a department chair, Annenberg fellow, History Speaks fellow, History Day advisor, and Youth & Government advisor.


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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.


HS American History Curriculum Updates

As part of our analysis of state test results, we have made some adjustments in the HS American History curriculum to facilitate better alignment. The changes are summarized below:

Curriculum Map Changes

  • The allotted time for Unit 1. Foundations of American History, has been increased to five weeks instead of four. This allows for increased attention to the historic documents, which made up about 17% of the state test items in 2017 and 2018.
  • A portion of Unit 2 (specifically, the Jim Crow and Great Migration lesson) has moved to the second grading period with one additional week allocated for the full unit.
  • The World War II unit has been moved to the beginning of the third nine weeks, with a reduction to two weeks. The World War II content statements have only been assessed with one question each of the last two years. World War II is also part of the Modern World History 9 curriculum.

Model Lessons (available on the Course Site)

  • Lesson 1.2 Historic Documents includes new activities (Activity Five) and resources (Resources G and H) for a more in-depth study of the Northwest Ordinance.
  • Lesson 2.1 Industrialization, Immigration, and Urbanization includes new activities (Activity 1) and resources (Resources A and B) on Westward Expansion and American Indians.

Released Test Items (available on the Course Site)

  • State test items are now also available by unit and linked at the top of each unit page.


State Testing

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

For the Spring 2018 administration of Ohio's State Tests in Social Studies, CCS proficiency rates increased by 11 percent in American Government and 2 percent in American History. Several individual schools also made substantial increases:
  • Africentric EC HS - 41 percent increase in American Government and 8 percent increase in American History
  • South HS - 33 percent increase in American Government and 10 percent increase in American History
  • Fort Hayes Arts & Academic HS - 27 percent increase in American Government and 8 percent increase in American History
  • Eastmoor Academy - 25 percent increase in American Government
  • Briggs HS - 21 percent increase in American Government
  • Linden McKinley STEM - 21 percent in American Government
  • East HS - 19 percent increase in American Government
  • Whetstone HS - 8 percent increase in American History

As we continue to build on our success and meet our challenges, 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 (updated August 2018);
  • American History and American Government Quick Review Guides (Spring 2018)
  • Released Test Items by Content Statement (2018 update will be emailed this week);
  • Vocabulary Practice Quizlets (Spring 2018);
  • Evidence-Based Sets Practice Assessments (Spring 2018); and
  • DocsTeach Historical Thinking Exercises (Spring 2018).

In addition, we have a few class sets of Mastering Ohio's American History State Test and Mastering Ohio's American Government State Test by Jarrett Publishing. Please contact Matt Doran regarding these resources.


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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, 2018. Please note that forms have been updated for 2018. Be sure to download the current forms from the Kids Voting website.


High School Mock Trial 2018-2019

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.


Matthew I. Doran

Secondary Social Studies Specialist

Office of Teaching & Learning

Curriculum Division

Linmoor Education Center