Geography is Integrated K-12 in Ohio’s New Learning Standards
Geography plays a central role in Ohio’s New Learning Standards in Social Studies as one of the four content Strands. These Strands serve as the foundation from which the standards are built, so you will see Geography incorporated at every grade level. This prominence is partly a result of the work of OGA Coordinator, Dr. Randy Smith, who served on ODE committees that guided the standards development.
The Four Content Strands
The Ohio Department of Education settled upon four content strands, around which the standards are built. These four Topics are found in each grade level from grade K-8, and appear in high school courses as appropriate.
Geo-Literacy through Spatial Thinking and Skills
Ohio’s students will achieve Geo-literacy through the development of spatial thinking and geography skills. These skills spiral in complexity as they progress through the K-12 program.
Geography Content is Aligned to Three Topics
The Ohio Department of Education was tasked with creating a new set of standards in 2010 that would retain the rigor necessary for students to become college and career ready while avoiding a complexity that make the standards difficult to implement in the classroom. This goal helped guide the decision to group Geography content around three topics, rather than up to seventeen that are found in the national Geography standards.
Links to Ohio Learning Standards Documents
Ohio’s New Learning Standards in Social Studies include the standards document that identifies the standards by grade level AND the model curriculum documents (by grade level) that elaborate on the content and the learning expectations. The model curriculum documents also offer some suggested resources and strategies for instruction.
- Ohio Department of Education (ODE)
- Social Studies resources at ODE
- Ohio’s New Learning Standards in Social Studies
- Model Curriculum documents to accompany the new learning standards