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Oklahoma Guide

Oklahoma is located in the South Central region of the United States, and is bordered by Texas, Kansas, Missouri, Arkansas, New Mexico, and Colorado. The state has a diverse landscape that includes plains, hills, forests, and mountains. A state research project is the perfect summative activity for any U.S. Region, Geography class, or general research unit of study. Students will love learning about state landmarks, mottos, fun facts, history, and so much more! Research is an important skill for children to learn at a young age; it exposes students to expository text, gives them practice determining important information, and enhances note taking and presentation skills. Students will enjoy learning all about Oklahoma, and why it is such a wonderful place to live and visit.

Student Activities for Oklahoma State Guide

Essential Questions for Oklahoma

  1. What are some significant events in the history of Oklahoma?
  2. What are some facts and features that make Oklahoma unique?
  3. What are some interesting places in Oklahoma that people would want to visit?

All About Oklahoma

Date of Statehood: November 16, 1907 (46th state)

State Motto: Labor Conquers All Things

State Nickname: The Sooner State

State Bird: Scissor-tailed Flycatcher

State Tree: Redbud

State Flower: Oklahoma Rose

Tourist Attractions:

Famous Citizens of Oklahoma: Carrie Underwood, Brad Pitt, Mickey Mantle, Ron Howard, Chuck Norris, Toby Keith

Capital City: Oklahoma City

Major Cities: Tulsa, Norman, Lawton, Edmond

Brief History of Oklahoma

Native American Cultures: Before European settlers arrived, Oklahoma was home to numerous Native American tribes, including the Cherokee, Choctaw, Chickasaw, Creek, and Seminole. These tribes had rich cultures and traditions, living in villages, farming, hunting, and crafting. They played a significant role in the early history of the region.

European Exploration: In the 1500s, Spanish explorers, such as Francisco Vázquez de Coronado, traveled through what is now Oklahoma, searching for gold and new territories. French explorers also ventured into the area in the 1700s, establishing trade with Native American tribes.

The Louisiana Purchase: In 1803, the United States acquired a vast territory from France known as the Louisiana Purchase, which included present-day Oklahoma. This purchase opened the region to American exploration and settlement.

Indian Territory and the Trail of Tears: In the 1830s, the U.S. government forced many Native American tribes from their homelands in the southeastern United States to move to an area designated as Indian Territory, which is now Oklahoma. This forced relocation, known as the Trail of Tears, was a difficult and tragic journey for thousands of Native Americans.

The Land Run of 1889: One of the most exciting events in Oklahoma history was the Land Run of 1889. On April 22, 1889, the U.S. government opened up unassigned lands for settlement. Thousands of people, known as "Boomers," rushed to claim plots of land. Some settlers, called "Sooners," sneaked into the area before the official start to claim land early.

Statehood: On November 16, 1907, Oklahoma became the 46th state of the United States. The state combined the Oklahoma Territory and Indian Territory into one, creating a diverse and culturally rich state.

The Oil Boom: In the early 1900s, the discovery of oil in Oklahoma led to rapid economic growth and development. Towns like Tulsa and Oklahoma City became booming centers of the oil industry, attracting workers and businesses from all over the country.

Students will create a historical timeline, a postcard, a spider map, and a fun facts storyboard showing what they have learned about Oklahoma. Creating these visuals gives the students the opportunity to show their creativity and their unique view of the state that they have researched. In addition, the combined use of words and illustrations allows students with different learning styles to show what they know in an exciting and eye-catching way.

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