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High School — Social Studies
Social Studies Skills and Methods


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    Social Studies Skills and Methods


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      Overview: Talking with Teachers about Social Studies Skills and Methods

      In social studies, we combine our understanding of geography, economics and government with our understanding of the rights and responsibilities of citizens within nations. To draw conclusions about history, we need to analyze, organize and evaluate a wealth of information. We generate our own ideas from the information, and present them to others.

      In their study of history, students should be able to identify primary and secondary sources of information, and evaluate the relevance and value of the claims in these sources. They should be able to form opinions and determine their positions on the issues presented to them. In addition, students must identify and utilize evidence to effectively defend their positions.

      Ohio's Academic Content Standards establish the following expectations for student performance in Social Studies Skills and Methods:

      • Students must be able to apply skills and methods to thinking and organizing;
      • Students collect, organize, evaluate and synthesize information from multiple sources to draw logical conclusions;
      • Students must be able to understand the most effective way to communicate information using appropriate social studies terminology.

      The content in this Teaching Tool is based on Ohio's Academic Content Standards: K-12 Social Studies and includes types of questions asked on the Ohio Graduation Test. While various suggestions and activities for working with students are included, this Teaching Tool is designed to complement a rigorous, research-based curriculum, not to substitute for one.


      Beyer, Barry. Practical Strategies for the Teaching of Thinking. Boston: Allyn and Bacon, 1987.

      Mowat, Linda. "Distinguishing Between Fact and Opinion -- A 'One Size Fits All' Process for Grades 6 to OAC." Journal of Ontario History and Social Studies Teachers' Association. Fall 2001.

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