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What is Oklahoma National History Day?

Each year thousands of Oklahoma students, encouraged by teachers statewide, participate in the Oklahoma National History Day (OkNHD) program. OkNHD is part of National History Day and is a highly regarded academic program for 6th through 12th grade students with more than 500,000 students take part annually. It allows teachers the chance to incorporate an academic program that directly addresses Common Core and Oklahoma Assessment Standards for the Social Studies with student-based projects.

Students choose historical topics related to a theme and conduct extensive primary and secondary research through libraries, archives, museums, and historic sites. After analyzing and interpreting their sources, students draw conclusions about their topics’ significance in history before presenting their work in original papers, exhibits, performances, websites, and documentaries. The student projects are entered into competitions in the spring at district, state, and national contests where they are evaluated by professional historians and educators. Each May students from across Oklahoma compete in the state finals. The program culminates in the Kenneth E. Behring National Contest each June held at the University of Maryland at College Park.

In addition to discovering the exciting world of the past, OkNHD also helps students develop the following attributes that are critical for future success:

  • Critical thinking and problem-solving skills
  • Research and reading skills
  • Oral and written communication and presentation skills
  • Self-esteem and confidence
  • A sense of responsibility for and involvement in the democratic process

The Oklahoma National History Day Program not only teaches students about history, it encourages them to participate in history!


Oklahoma National History Day is made possible through the support of numerous organizations and foundations. You too can support Oklahoma National History Day. To find out more please contact the state coordinator.
The 2014 Oklahoma History Day Sponsors are:

Ad Astra Foundation

Global Health

Mount Vernon

The Harris Foundation

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