Teaching the Colorado Academic Standards in social studies is supported through a wide array of free instructional resources. This webpage lists just a few of these resources and will be updated regularly.
If you are an educator in Colorado and have suggestions for a great free resource please email Stephanie Hartman.
The resources provided on this website are intended to provide a quick access list for educators to use in a way that supports their instructional planning. Provided resources should be previewed and used with teacher discretion. Because this page contains resources outside of the CDE website, CDE cannot control changes in outside content and listing these resources does not indicate an endorsement by the Colorado Department of Education.
The U.S. Census Bureau's source for population, housing, economic, and geographic data.
Colorado Geographic Alliance (COGA)
Part of a network of fifty Geographic Alliances across the country, COGA was founded in 1989 by the National Geographic Society and geographers in Colorado. Their main objective is to provide resources and professional development for elementary and secondary school teachers, ensuring the public understands the rationale behind comprehensive geography education throughout the State of Colorado.
Discovery Education – Geography
K – 12 lesson plans for teaching geography, culture, and world history.
The Flat Stanley Project
For this project, elementary students create a "Flat Stanley" doll, and then send him, along with his journal, on a world adventure!
PBS Frontline World
Resources and “stories from a small planet” for middle school and high school teachers. Topics cross the disciplines of culture, geography, economics, history, and politics.
Geographic Information Systems
This site provides an introduction to GIS, and how GIS informs people on a daily basis to improve our way of life.
This page allows you to search for any address, any place in the world and then view it via satellite!!
National Geographic Education!
National Geographic’s site filled with lesson plans and activities for teaching the national geography standards.
National Geographic Mapping
This portion of the National Geographic site focuses on everything maps; including an interactive map maker, mapping activities, and a plethora of world and thematic maps.
National Geographic's Map Machine
Includes an interactive atlas, both political and physical maps, and satellite imagery.
Teaching with Historic Places
This site, from the National Park Service, explains how to use historic places to teach about history, culture, and issues. The site includes lesson plans too.
The World Factbook
The World Factbook provides information on the history, people, government, economy, geography, communications, transportation, military, and transnational issues for 267 world entities.The online version of the World Factbook is developed and maintained by the CIA.
U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)
The USGS provides K – 12 educational resources for teaching geography (and biology, geology, etc.).