Social studies

What students learn in social studies helps prepare them to be civically involved in their community, to understand their role as global citizens in the global economy, and to appreciate the diversity of the world around them.

Social studies classes:

  • help students to embrace their role in positively impacting their community, state, country, and world
  • engage students in authentic work in Social Studies related fields

Social studies strands

All social studies courses, from grades K-12, address topics within each of these eight fields of study, as designated by the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills:

  • history
  • geography
  • economics; including  the U.S. free enterprise system
  • government; including the democratic values of our state and nation as a constitutional republic
  • citizenship; including the importance of patriotism and how citizens have met or failed to meet ideals espoused in the founding documents
  • culture
  • science, technology, andsSociety
  • social studies skills; which are to be incorporated into the teaching of content to promote critical-thinking

For more information, please click here to view Chapter 113 of the TAC.

K-6 social studies

The goal of social studies education in the lower grades is to help students explore their community, communities around them, and their place in the world. Each year, we seek to expand a child's horizons by opening the window to the world a little wider.

Progression of social studies content, K-6

  • Kindergarten: My Home, My Family, My Classroom
  • 1st Grade: My School Is a Community
  • 2nd Grade: My Town Is a Community
  • 3rd Grade: Communities Are Similar and Different
  • 4th Grade: Texas, Past and Present
  • 5th Grade: The United States, Past and Present
  • 6th Grade: Modern World Cultures

Resources

State and federal education agencies

Texas Essential Knowledge and Skill for Social Studies
This page lists the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills for Social Studies.

STAAR Released Test Questions
This page includes STAAR released sample questions.

TEA Social Studies
This site will provide you with information on curriculum, assessment, rules, etc.

Federal Government Internet Educational Resources
ED.gov is the main website of the U.S. Department of Education (ED) is the agency of the federal government that establishes policy for, administers, and coordinates most federal assistance to education.

History

Digital History
Digital History, a U.S. History survey course, is a highly regarded gateway to web resources as well as a repository of unique teaching materials, first-person primary documents, and guides to analyzing historical evidence for high school and college students and teachers of American history.

National Archives and Records Administration
The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) is the nation's record keeper. Of all documents and materials created in the course of business conducted by the United States Federal government, only 1%-3% are so important for legal or historical reasons that they are kept by us forever.

Geography

National Geographic Society
The National Geographic Society is one of the largest nonprofit scientific and educational institutions in the world. Its interests include geography, archaeology and natural science, and the promotion of environmental and historical conservation.

If It Were My Home
If It Were My Home compares demographic data from countries around the world in easy to understand language.

Government/Political Science

State and Local Government Information
As the U.S. government's official web portal, USA.gov makes it easy for the public to get U.S. government information and services on the web.

The Whitehouse
The White House is one of the world's most famous buildings. Learn more about its art and architecture, the Presidents and First Ladies who have lived here, and how you can take a tour.

U.S. Census
The Census Bureau serves as the leading source of quality data about the nation's people and economy.

Election Sites

Texas Secretary of State Office – Project V.O.T.E
The Secretary of State is one of six state officials named by the Texas Constitution to form the Executive Department of the State and serves as Chief Election Officer for Texas, assisting county election officials and ensuring the uniform application and interpretation of election laws throughout Texas.

The League of Women Voters

The League of Women Voters is a nonpartisan political organization, encourages informed and active participation in government, works to increase understanding of major public policy issues, and influences public policy through education and advocacy.

Citizenship/Civic Education

The Center for Civic Education: Civics standards, curriculum and programs
The Center for Civic Education is dedicated to promoting an enlightened and responsible citizenry committed to democratic principles and actively engaged in the practice of democracy in the United States and other countries.

Economics

National Council on Economic Education
The Council for Economic Education (CEE) is the leading organization in the United States that focuses on the economic and financial education of students from kindergarten through high school.

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
The Bureau of Labor Statistics of the U.S. Department of Labor is the principal Federal agency responsible for measuring labor market activity, working conditions, and price changes in the economy. Its mission is to collect, analyze, and disseminate essential economic information to support public and private decision-making.