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Curriculum Overview Samples - Social Studies

Initial Samples Released January 31, 2013

Hello social studies educators,

I am proud to present the k-12 social studies curriculum samples created by Colorado educators and teachers. Working with facilitators Kate Hamilton (Brighton) and Virginia Lindemann (Jefferson County), this past fall, over 100 educators came together to translate the geography, history, civics, and economic standards of the Colorado Academic Standards (CAS) into curriculum. As resources for districts’ voluntary-use, these curriculum samples offer possible options for sequencing the concepts, skills, and content of the CAS across a semester, year, or course.

The template upon which all of the samples are based derived from research and was designed and refined by Colorado educators to highlight what students should understand, know and be able to do at the end of a given unit or plan of study (detailed description of the curriculum template components). There are some unique aspects to the social studies samples at particular grade levels, which are documented in the bullet points below.

Together, these samples are intended to support districts’ transition to the CAS and the development of standards-based instructional practices. Please click here to share your thoughts regarding the curriculum overview samples.

NEW RESOURCES! Instructional Unit Samples are now available for select overviews.

Stephanie Hartman
Social Studies Content Specialist

Questions?: E-mail the Social Studies Content Specialist

To learn more about the Social Studies curriculum samples watch the presentations below.

High School Social Studies Samples

Unique components in middle and high school social studies:

    • The Reading and Writing Standards for Literacy in History/Social Studies 6-12 incorporated in the ELA standards of the Common Core have been included in each of the middle/high school samples.
    • Personal Financial Literacy evidence outcomes for social studies are embedded within the Key Skill sections and denoted by *.
    • Foundational Generalizations: The world history, geography, and United States history samples include 4 generalizations (2 geography and 2 history) that are considered "foundational" to the disciplines.



Middle School Social Studies Samples

Unique components in middle and high school social studies:


Kindergarten - 5th Grade Social Studies Samples

Unique components in elementary social studies:

        • A graphic, on the elementary samples, that provides a visual depiction of the connections between the skills, content and concepts of k-5 social studies.
        • Personal financial literacy evidence outcomes for social studies are embedded within the Key Skill sections and denoted by *.


The Colorado Sample Curriculum was written by and for Colorado educators as a way to understand and translate the state standards into curriculum.  Users of the samples should feel free to copy, distribute and transmit the samples and to adapt them to fit their needs.  Please honor the work of the Colorado educators that created these samples by providing them attribution. These samples were not intended for commercial purposes.

For Website support please contact Anna Huffman.

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