Washington Social Studies

This group, curated by OSPI, contains resources created by and for educators - including instructional materials, review rubrics, and other useful links. (Icon: citizens by Adrien Coquet from the Noun Project)
92 members | 60 affiliated resources

All resources in Washington Social Studies

Washington State Social Studies Learning Standards

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Social studies is a vital component of education in Washington state. The Office of Superintend¬ent of Public Instruction (OSPI) envisions “all students prepared for post-secondary pathways, careers, and civic engagement.” Additionally, the National Council for the Social Studies states, “The primary purpose of social studies is to help young people make informed and reasoned decisions for the public good as citizens of a culturally diverse, democratic society in an inter¬dependent world.” Students who receive quality instruction in social studies are engaged in learning that promotes inquiry and thoughtful civic participation. With this in mind, we are pleased to introduce OSPI’s updated Washington State K–12 Learning Standards for Social Studies. Our hope is that you will find these standards to be rigorous, thoughtful, inquiry-driven, and organized for easy accessibility.

Material Type: Teaching/Learning Strategy

Author: Washington Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction

The State We're In: Washington

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The State We’re In: Washington is an online and printed educational publication written by Jill Severn for the League of Women Voters of Washington Education Fund. Part of a larger Civic Education Project, this instructional resource establishes the link between public participation and effective government. Colorful graphs, historical photos and thought-provoking illustrations help to describe the basics of government, and the connection between a governing authority and culture and economy. Young readers and adults alike will gain a robust sense of past and present tribal governance and their relationship to state and local government in Washington. Teacher guides to accompany this resource as well as translated versions are available on the OER Commons Washington Hub.

Material Type: Reading, Textbook

Authors: Jill Severn, League of Women Voters of Washington

Primarily Washington: Washington's Gateway to Pacific Northwest Primary Source Materials for Teachers and Students

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Primarily Washington is the Washington State Library, Washington State Archives, and Legacy Washington's way of bridging the gap between the primary sources in our collections and the classroom. The State Library's goals include actions to promote education and life-long learning, as well as connect Washingtonians to their history. This portal will contribute to these efforts by containing content that will consist of digitized primary sources that have been partnered with curriculm developed by Washington State teachers. There are also featured exhibits for further study by students and all others wishing to learn more about the history of the Pacific Northwest. Note: These primary sources include materials that reflect the attitudes, perspectives, and beliefs of different times. These materials are presented as part of the historical record. Inclusion of these materials does not mean endorsement of or agreement with any views expressed. But they provide opportunities for examining multiple perspectives, generating discussions and comparing and contrasting points of view over time.

Material Type: Diagram/Illustration, Primary Source

Authors: Washington State Archives, Washington State Library

Atlas of the Pacific Northwest

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This 2018 edition is the first to be released in a digital, fully-interactive format, designed to highlight facets of the Pacific Northwest landscape with novel approaches to data presentation. Where previous editions of the atlas were designed to ask and answer questions, this atlas serves as a platform for the geographically curious to explore the region, providing as many critical questions as it does critical answers. Beyond this page are maps of the familiar and the unfamiliar. Migration maps highlight human movement between the Pacific Northwest and the rest of the United States; a wildfire timeline chronicles the year-to-year spread of modern and historical fires; and the watershed guide abandons traditional political boundaries in favor of natural, hydrological borders. All data in the atlas were gathered from publically accessible sources, compiled using open-source software and coding libraries. This is an atlas designed to be open, responsive, and to satisfy the geographic curiosity of any and all interested.

Material Type: Data Set

Authors: Institute for Natural Resources, Oregon State University Libraries and Press

Washington C3 Hub

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The Washington C3 Hub is designed to support teachers with high-quality instructional materials aligned to our state learning standards and reflective of the C3 Framework. Here you will find inquiries developed by teachers in districts around the state as well as other helpful materials to help embed proven social studies instructional practices into K-12 classes. Individual resources from this site can be found in the grade band subfolders. You may also view other states' sites on the main C3 State Hub site located at: http://www.c3teachers.org/state-hubs/

Material Type: Lesson, Lesson Plan

Author: Varied WA districts

Densho: Japanese American Incarceration and Japanese Internment

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This free online course will give you the historical background, primary source materials, and instructional strategies you need to teach the World War II incarceration of Japanese Americans in the secondary school classroom. Each learning activity in this online course is meant to give you a sense of the learning experience your students will have in your classroom.

Material Type: Activity/Lab, Case Study, Lesson Plan, Unit of Study

Author: Densho Center

BlackPast.org - Online Reference Center Resources

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BlackPast.org provides free access to documents, transcripts, timelines, videos, and lesson suggestions. With over 6,000 pages of information, BlackPast.org is the single largest free and unrestricted resource on African American and African history on the Internet today. Through this knowledge, the site aims to promote greater understanding to generate constructive change in our society.This resource highlights teacher-developed lessons for using BlackPast.org in the classroom and links to different sections of the BlackPast.org website.

Material Type: Lesson, Primary Source, Reading

Authors: Barbara Soots, Jerry Price, Jerry Price, Washington OSPI OER Project

The Constitution and Government of Washington State

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An integrated language arts and social studies unit designed to develop student’s literacy skills while giving them an understanding of the general purpose of government, the structure and processes of Washington’s state government, and the rights and responsibilities of citizenship. The unit culminates with an optional mock legislature simulation that has students write and argue for a bill.

Material Type: Unit of Study

Author: Ryan Theodoriches

Loyalty or opposition: What is more important for citizenship?

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This inquiry takes students through a consideration of what the duties of citizenship are. Students consider current controversies about behavior during the national anthem, historical reasons behind revolutionary and loyalist perspectives during the revolutionary era, and by applying learning to answer how loyalty and opposition play a part in actions of engaged citizens. This inquiry is designed to take about five 50 minute class periods, with additional time allowed for extensions and/or teacher discretion. This inquiry would fit in a unit studying the American Revolution. Materials should be adapted to meet the needs of students on Individual Education Plans, 504 Plans, or who are English Language Learners.

Material Type: Lesson, Unit of Study

Authors: Joshua Parker, North Thurston School District

Road to Revolution: What could cause the colonists to revolt?

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The students will identify and select two primary source documents from a valid source. Students will look for multiple points of view on their topic and print a copy of each. Next, as a group the students will highlight the two sources then reflect. They will then do the Newspaper activity illustrating both points of view they learned from the their sources that BEST reflect what really happened.. Follow up activity, each team chooses the Newspaper showing the best evidence of the event and as a group will come up and teach their “Intolerable Act” as the experts, to the class answering the question as to “Why this would cause the colonists to revolt?”

Material Type: Lesson Plan, Teaching/Learning Strategy, Unit of Study

Authors: Amy Johnson, Longview Public Schools

Grade 8 - Differentiate between Fact and Assumption

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Compelling Question: How can words lead to conflict? This inquiry provides students with the opportunity to analyze, through the evaluation of words, how conflicts between the U.S. government and Native American tribes arose. Students will be asked to investigate federal reports, speeches, and news reports to discern U.S. leaders’ perspectives and compare these biases to the words of Native American leaders Chief Red Eagle and Chief Tecumseh. This query is meant to challenge students to analyze the meaning of words and evaluate how these words said can cause conflict through three events: Andrew Jackson’s involvement in the War of 1812 and his presidency, the Sioux Ghost Dance, and Georgia v. Worcester. Students must also be able to think critically from Native American Chiefs’ perspectives to be able to accurately comprehend the power behind the U.S.’s conflicting words. The final summative assessment asks students to write an argument using evidence and a counterargument addressing how words lead to conflict.

Material Type: Lesson, Lesson Plan, Unit of Study

Authors: Cynthia Yurosko, Evergreen Public Schools

Territory and Treaty Making: A study of Tribes, Westward Expansion, and Conflict

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This unit is focused on the examination of a single topic, in this case, the Native Americans of the inland Northwest and conflict that arose when other non-native people started to settle in the northwest, and to specifically address the native populations that lived in the inland northwest. The materials were created to be one coherent arc of instruction focused on one topic. The module was designed to include teaching notes that signal the kind of planning and thinking such instruction requires: close reading with complex text, and specific instructional strategies or protocols are described that support students’ reading and writing with evidence are described in enough detail to make it very clear what is required of students and how to support students in doing this rigorous work. Materials include summative assessment of content and process, central texts, key resources, and protocols that support and facilitate student learning.

Material Type: Unit of Study

Author: Leslie Heffernan


The State We're In: Washington (Chinese Translation)

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Seattle Public Schools OER Grant has produced Chinese translations of The State We're In for use in Middle School Mandarin Dual Language Immersion Programs. The State We’re In: Washington is an online and printed educational publication written by Jill Severn for the League of Women Voters of Washington Education Fund. Part of a larger Civic Education Project, this instructional resource establishes the link between public participation and effective government. Colorful graphs, historical photos and thought-provoking illustrations help to describe the basics of government, and the connection between a governing authority and culture and economy. Young readers and adults alike will gain a robust sense of past and present tribal governance and their relationship to state and local government in Washington. 

Material Type: Textbook

Author: Thad Williams

Human Geography: An open textbook for Advanced Placement

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Human Geography: An open textbook for Advanced Placement is aligned to the 2015  College Board course articulation for AP Human Geography. The purpose of  AP Human Geography is to introduce students to the systematic study of patterns and processes that have shaped human understanding, use, and alteration of Earth's surface. Students employ spatial concepts and landscape analysis to examine human social organization and its environmental consequences. They also learn about the methods and tools geographers use in their science and practice.

Material Type: Lesson Plan

Author: Tracy Pitzer

How great was the Great Migration?

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The goal of this inquiry is for students to gain an informed, critical perspective on the Great Migration of African Americans from the South to the North and West from 1915-1970.  By investigating the movement, including the injustice of Jim Crow in the South, and the racism migrants continued to face in the North and West, students will examine how the migration changed the social fabric of the United States.  Through taking a critical look at the documents, students should understand the extent to which this movement was “great,” and determine if the title Great Migration is fitting. 

Material Type: Lesson Plan

Author: Sue Metzler