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K-12 Education Content Areas  

Recommended resources for K-12 education areas such as math, music, English, social studies, and science.
Last Updated: Jul 16, 2014 URL: Print Guide RSS Updates

Social Studies Print Page

Primary Sources at the Library of Congress

Primary Documents - Web Sites


Timeline Tools

Timetoast: create your own historical timeline or browse the site's timelines.  Share your timeline on the web.

Award-Winning Children's Literature

  • The Once Upon a World Children's Book Award
    Honors children's books, aimed at young readers (ages 6-10) and young adults (ages 11+), which deal with issues of tolerance, diversity, human understanding and social justice, thus inspiring readers to promote positive change in the world.
  • Coretta Scott King Award
    Given to African American authors and illustrator for outstanding inspirational and educational contributions.
  • Jane Addams Children's Book Award
    Award is given to the children's books published the preceding year that effectively promote the cause of peace, social justice, world community, and the equality of the sexes and all races as well as meeting conventional standards for excellence.
  • Carter G. Woodson Book Award
    NCSS gives this award to the most distinguished social science books appropriate for young readers that depict ethnicity in the United States
  • The Pura Belpre Award
    Presented to a Latino/Latina writer and illustrator whose work best portrays, affirms, and celebrates the Latino cultural experience in an outstanding work of literature for children and youth.

Children's Literature for Global Connections

NCSS Social Studies Trade Books for Young People: literature for grades K-8 that "emphasize human relations, represent a diversity of groups and are senstivie to a broad range of cultural experiences" and are "easily readable and of high literary quality" (NCSS web site)


ReadWriteThink: Lesson plans from the International Reading Association that include "before reading," "during reading," and "after reading" stages; and ideas for assessment, links to standards, extension ideas, and a section that relates reading instruction theory to practice.

Children's & Young Adult Literature Resources: click on "diverse reads," and select a culture to see the books listed.  The site's mission is to "to serve young readers, teachers, librarians, child caregivers, undergraduate and graduate students, university professors, writers, and literature enthusiasts of all stripes"

Cooperative Children's Book Center: covers all grade levels and subject areas; booklists include books about family, social justice, peace, justice, and multiculturalism.


    Children's Book Reviews & Recommended Reading Levels

    These subscription databases link to information about children's books, reviews of the books, and the grade/interest/reading levels for the book.  Sometimes lesson plans are also included.

    Children's Literature Comprehensive Database: information about fiction and non-fiction children's literature.

    Novelist K-8: information about fiction for primary years through adolescence, including age levels, lesson plans, & book reviews.

    Novelist: book reviews, age levels, and additional information about fiction and nonfiction.

    Education Research Complete: articles from education magazines and journals, including lesson plans, author bios, and lengthy articles about themes in children's literature.


      Lesson Plans for Social Studies

      I have carefully selected these lesson plan web sites using the following criteria:

      1. They are free.
      2. They are tied to national standards, and sometimes state standards.
      3. An assessment or evaluation component is included.
      4. Suggested resources, handouts, or links are present.
      • PBS Teachers: Social Studies
        PBS lesson plans use video clips and have everything you might want: procedures, standards alignment, extension ideas, and assessment ideas.
      • New York Times Learning Network
        Lesson plans for grades 3-12 that include interdisciplinary connections, extension activities, discussion questions, and lengthy standards alignment.
      • EDSITEment | National Endowment for the Humanities
        Each lesson plan is amazingly thorough, including activities, assessment ideas, standards alignment, and learning objejcts.
      • Smithsonian Education
        Comprehensive units include multiple lesson plans, standards alignment, content info., maps, and photos.
      • ADL Curriculum Connections
        Lesson plans and resources created by the Anti-Defamation League that integrate multicultural, anti-bias, and social justice themes into the curriculum.
      • Thinkfinity (formerly Marco Polo)
        Lesson plans, worksheets, maps, and rubrics, from organizations such as the International Reading Association, NCTE, and the Smithsonian.
      • Best of History Web Sites
        1,200+ history-related web sites that link to K-12 history lesson plans, teacher guides, activities, games, quizzes, and more.
      • History Matters
        A carefully selected list of U.S. history web sites for teaching history and social studies; includes lesson plans, syllabi, quizzes, and teaching strategies.
      • Discovery Lesson Plans Library
        This great website contains lesson plans based on grade and subject.
      • Mid-Continent Research for Education & Learning
        Lesson plans for K-12 full of teacher's notes, activities, and purpose
      • Columbia Education Center
        Hundreds of lesson plans for all grade levels, with overviews, objectives, and activities for each plan.
      • Teachers Network
        Teachers network has lesson plans, classroom specials, and teacher designed activities.
      • Education Planet
        Has over 34,000 lesson plans, 1,000 worksheets, 9 ID State Standards, and 16 Common Core Standards.

      Web Sites


      POGIL Become a Subject Expert!

      Big 6


      Evaluation Exercise

      Step 1: Now that you've generated a list of questions you'd like to explore, it's time to begin finding relevant information.  Read the following explanation of the CRAAP criteria for evaluating information resources.  Follow this link to a website that outlines CRAAP.

      Step 2: Using the worksheet provided, apply the CRAAP criteria to each of the following websites in order to evaluate them for academic use:

      Do you know what a scholarly journal is? View this video.

      Databases to Help You Build Social Studies Content Knowledge

      LiLI Databases: Portal to articles and eBooks, accessible to all Idaho citizens.  Type your keywords in the text box, e.g. holocaust danish resistance.

      JSTOR: The Scholarly Journal Archive:  Articles from journals in history, anthropology, arts, science, education, business, and much more; most journals are indexed back several decades. 

      America: History & Life: Articles from journals covering North American history; full-text available for most of the articles indexed.

      Historical Abstracts

      Historical Abstracts: Articles about history in regions outside of North America; full-text available for most of the articles indexed.





        Civil Rights Digital Library: Online films, texts, images, and audio from direct 1950s and 1960s sources.

        Folkstreams: Online documentary films featuring American folk culture; includes essays, transcriptions, and teaching & study guides.

        Geography Teaching Resources

        Free eBook!

        Online Resources for Teaching IB DP Geography: 16 Free Online Resources for Teaching Patterns and Change, by Richard Allaway

        • CIA World Factbook
          Outstanding source for students looking for info on the history, people, gov, economy, geography, communications, transportation, military, and transnational issues for 266 world entities
        • Google Earth
          Mapping web site: digital mapping and aerial photography for the classroom
        • National Geographic
          Resources for teaching geography, including articles, lesson plans, photos, and a mapmaker

        Financial Literacy for Educators

        • Council for Economic Education (CEE)
          K-12 financial education programs, including teaching resources, assessment instruments, videos, state standards correlations, online teacher training, etc.. Some access in Spanish.
        • Jump$tart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy
          Coalition of 150+ national organizations working together on personal financial literacy for the PK-College population; includes teacher and student resources. Some access in Spanish.
        • Money Smart
          Set of customizable, instructor-led training modules for adults in seven languages. Teenage modules also available. Self-paced, online instruction, too. Site is also available in Spanish.
        • National Endowment for Financial Education (NEFE)
          Financial education partners providing a collection of collaborative financial literacy projects and teacher/student/parent resources. Financial workshop kits for adult audience. Some access in Spanish.

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