In Modern Local History, students will examine the people and events that have formed and transformed the local community beginning with the inhabitants of the area at the time of the Louisiana Purchase and continuing to the present.  “Local” can be defined as a geographic region within the state of Oklahoma, or within political boundaries, like city, county, or tribal boundaries.  The student will employ research, literacy, and social studies process skills to examine the economic, cultural, and political development of local communities and examine the strengths of the community today.  The study of Local History positions students to gain perspective and evaluate their own relevance in the larger settings of state, national, and world history.

Does Local History address Oklahoma Academic Standards?
Yes!  Many of the High School Oklahoma Academic Standards for the Social Studies from the Oklahoma State Department of Education are covered in this Local History curriculum, especially the “Process and Literacy Skills.”  Many of the Oklahoma Academic Standards from Oklahoma History and Government, Geography, Reading, Writing, Speaking and Listening, Language, Instructional Technology, Information Literacy, Music, and Visual Arts can be addressed with various modules. 

There are no state standards in Oklahoma for Local History, so the “Local History Objectives for Student Learning” are included in our book Every Place Has a Story:  A Guide for Teaching  and Learning Local History in Oklahoma.  These objectives roughly parallel the Oklahoma History and Government standards and include topics in American history to help students and teachers make those connections.  The objectives also emphasize what is unique about Local History.  The objectives addressed will vary depending on the topics relevant to the local area. 

If Local History is taught as a separate course, the Oklahoma State Department of Education has assigned the specific code 5792 Local History.  If taught as a Social Studies elective credit course, the teacher must be a Certified Social Studies teacher or a Language Arts teacher with Social Studies certification.  Please contact the Oklahoma State Department of Education for details.  Of course, you can always separate the lessons and blend them into your Oklahoma History and Government, U.S. History, World History or Geography courses.  Or, you may want to use individual lessons for Speech, English, Computer Applications, Information Literacy, Music or Visual Arts.  Before-school, after-school, summer school, online, and alternative education programs have found these lessons to be great additions, too!

The Lexile® measure for Every Place Has a Story:  Student Guide to Learning Local History in Oklahoma is 1050L.  For more information about The Lexile® Framework for Reading, visit or

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