Social Studies Signal

Social Studies Signal

April 2023- Social Studies Newsletter


Updates from the Ohio Department of Education Helps School Communities Find High-Quality Professional Learning Resources

The Ohio Professional Learning Directory provides Ohio educators and school staff with a searchable statewide directory of professional learning courses, recordings, documents and events provided by trusted education partners like the Department, educational service centers and public television stations.

Solar Eclipse Resource Page for Educators

The Ohio Department of Education has created a resource page for educators and school administrators on logistics and curricular approaches to educating students and the community about the total solar eclipse, which will be visible in Ohio on April 8, 2024.

New Webpage, Chat Series Support Ohio’s Principals and Building Administrators

The newly created Ohio Principal Leadership Supports webpage and Principal Chat series highlight information to support principals, assistant principals and administrators with their work.

Office Hours with Ohio Department of Education Program Specialists

Ohio educators can schedule office hours directly with Ohio's Social Studies and Financial Literacy consultants, Justin Leach and Linda McKean, using the Microsoft Teams Bookings links below: 

April is Financial Literacy Month

Register Today for the 2023 Teaching Financial Literacy Conference

Registration is open for the H.K. Barker Center for Economic Education's 2023 Teaching Financial Literacy Conference scheduled for July 6-7, 2023, in Akron, Ohio. Sub-themes for the conference include: 
  • Credit & Debt
  • Insurance & Risk Management
  • Budget & Financial Planning
  • Investing 
  • Informed Consumer 
  • Entrepreneurship 
  • Economic Education 
  • Ohio's New Financial Literacy Graduation Requirement
  • Educator Licensure

EverFi Financial Literacy Month Resources

EVERFI has 14 free resources for teachers and students across Ohio. Below are additional opportunities for the classroom and students through digital resources, student workshops, and scholarship opportunities.  
EVERFI has created an Ohio standards alignment guide for teachers using EVERFI as part of your financial literacy curriculum. Reach out to if you'd like to discuss bringing these resources to your district. 
Student Scholarship Opportunities 
  • Middle School Scholarship Opportunity - All FutureSmart students are eligible to enter the scholarship contest for an opportunity to receive a 529 college savings gift card. Twenty students will receive a $2,000 scholarship, and two more will win $5,000. Students must complete 3 FutureSmart lessons and write a short summary answering a question about their learning experience by May 14th
  • High School Scholarship for Latino Students - $100,000 will be awarded to 20 Latino high school students thanks to Intuit Turbo Tax. Students must write a short entry after completing five EVERFI - Financial Literacy lessons by April 30th.
Financial Literacy Month Planning Calendars 
Below are calendar guides that provide financial literacy lesson ideas for each day of the month. Pick and choose what works best for your schedule.  For any general questions, requests or support regarding EVERFI's financial literacy suite, educators can contact Kaitlin Boldt, one of EVERFI's Team Ohio members, at

NextGen Personal Finance Events and Resources for Financial Literacy Month

NextGen Personal Finance (NGPF) has organized several Financial Literacy Month celebrations and resources
Month-long activities and resources:
  • NGPF's Favorite Activities Calendar 
  • NGPF's Question of the Day Calendar 
  • Financial Literacy Month Bingo Boards for whole class discussion 
  • Popcorn Watch Party Competition for the Real-World Class mini-documentary
Special events:  Educators can find full details on NGPF's financial literacy month website

New Junior Achievement Financial Literacy Course Available

Junior Achievement is excited to offer an innovative one-semester, teacher-led course that aligns with the new curriculum standards to provide teachers and schools with a simple solution to curriculum needs. The course, JA Financial Literacy-Ohiois free to schools, thanks to a generous contribution from Peoples Bank, and is already being used in classrooms across Ohio this school year.
JA Financial Literacy-Ohio is a blended model that is primarily teacher-led but also includes a volunteer video library and student self-guided content. Available in both classroom-based and remote live implementation. The course’s flexible model provides robust support materials for educators, including a helpful pacing guide for semester-long programming, a case study, theme projects and a virtual simulation.
Interested educators can contact Denice Schafer, VP of Programs for the JA of North Central Ohio office, at or 330-433-0063 ext. 104 for more information or visit the Junior Achievement website

News from Education Organizations

Ohio History Connection Virtual Field Trips

The Ohio History Connection recently launched new virtual field trip resources. Virtual Quests are engaging online educational resources about Ohio's people and history. These digital resources, created collaboratively with community stakeholders, provide remote learning opportunities for 4th and 8th-grade students. Interested educators can access this content now by visiting the Ohio History Connection website

2023 Middle School We The People Volunteers Needed; 2023 We The People Summer Institute Announced 

On April 14, the Ohio Center for Law-Related Education (OCLRE) will welcome middle school students from across the state for the Middle School We the People Showcase. Volunteers are needed to evaluate student responses to questions or to serve as timekeepers/facilitators. To learn more about this volunteer opportunity, please visit the OCLRE volunteer webpage.  
Additionally, the 2023 We the People Summer Institute will be held in Philadelphia, PA, during the week of July 8-12 in joint training with the Civics that Empowers All Students (CEAS) grant. More information is coming, but interested participants can find details related to the event on the OCLRE website under the ‘Professional Development tab.  

Professional Learning Opportunities

Teaching American History Seminars invites educators to participate in conversational seminars that explore themes in American history and self-government by studying original historical documents. 

Upcoming seminars include: 

2023 NCSS Inquiry and Teaching with Primary Sources Summer Institute

The National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS) invites social studies methods professors and their students to on-site summer workshops focused on teaching with primary sources. 

Upcoming National Council for History Education Webinars

The National Council for History Education is offering two webinars in April:

Other Resources, News and Information

Building Blocks of Progress Resource

The Bill of Rights Institute, in partnership with the Hoover Institution, recently released a new economics resource called "Building Blocks of Progress".  This resource encourages students to consider individuals' daily economic choices. The resource covers the role of individuals, government, and economic principles in creating a free society. The resource pairs each lesson with multiple videos developed by the Hoover Institution to create a rich, blended learning experience for students.

New Holocaust & Humanity Resource: Breaking the Myth: How Jews Resisted During the Holocaust

On April 19, 1943, the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising began. It was the largest armed Jewish resistance during WWII. In addition to the uprising, many other forms of resistance took place. Commemorate the 80th anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising in your classroom with a new curricular resource from the Nancy & David Wolf Holocaust & Humanity Center. Debunking the myth that Jews did not resist, the lesson asks students to identify and examine various types of resistance during the Holocaust through the testimony of local Holocaust survivors. In addition, a letter from Warsaw ghetto resistance fighter Mordechai Anielewicz challenges students to consider the tenacity of the human spirit and the power of historical Jewish resistance to inspire action today. 

New NCSS E-Book: Using Inquiry to Prepare Students for College, Career and Civic Life

National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS) announced a new e-book produced with funding from the Library of Congress' Teaching with Primary Sources Grant, Using Inquiry to Prepare Students for College, Career, and Civic Life: Elementary Grades. NCSS has designed this resource and its future companion set of online methods texts to support educators constructing inquiry learning through primary source documents in social studies education.
The resources in this newsletter are free and have been reviewed using the Department’s Social Studies resource filter against established criteria. Copies of the completed filter forms are available upon request. Inclusion in this newsletter does not represent a recommendation to use a resource. Many quality resources are available beyond those included here. Educators should use their professional expertise to determine the suitability of any particular resources for use in their districts, schools or classrooms.

Send comments/questions to:

Justin Leach, Social Studies Consultant, Office of Learning and Instructional Strategies

Linda McKean, Social Studies Consultant, Office of Learning and Instructional Strategies