Mission

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History / Social Studies

10

11

Electives Grades 10, 11 & 12

  • Creating Sustainable Communities
  • Creating Sustainable Communities Honors
  • Three Democracies
  • Three Democracies Honors

 

 

 

 

  • American Studies – 2 credits
  • American Studies Honors - 2 credits

(Interdisciplinary History/English course)

 

 

 

 

 

1 credit

  • AP Modern European History

1/2 credit

  • Psychology
  • Street Law
  • Economics: Money, the Market and You
  • Introduction to Philosophy
  • Sports and Society
  • Modern US History 1945- the Present
  • Current Events

 

Creating Sustainable Communities (312) 1 credit Social Studies

  • Approved NCAA Course

Creating Sustainable Communities (CSC) provides a contemporary perspective on what it means to be a responsible participant in one’s own community. The class focuses on citizenship and responsibility toward those resources that civilization share, including our environment, economy, and human rights. This course actively engages students to be a participatory citizen in a democratic society. Student’s research and study problems that exist or threaten the welfare of citizens’ ability to participate in that democratic community.

What will you Learn?

  • You will learn how the political system works and why it is so important for every American to become more politically engaged. We will explore current political issues, moral philosophy, and political ideologies.
  • Explore and compare economic systems.
  • You will explore how people around the world are working together to find real solutions to pressing environmental issues.  
  • You will learn how various groups of historically underprivileged Americans are struggling to gain equal access to the American Dream.

How will you be Assessed?

  • Close reads and critical analysis of documents and various forms of media, class dialogue and debates, community based media projects, class projects, and quizzes
  • Service learning projects, class projects, formal writing assignments, tests, mid-term and final exam and/or projects
  • All summative assessments and some formative assessments will be evaluated using a Learning Scale with clear Learning Targets.

Creating Sustainable Communities Honors (316)        1 credit Social Studies

  • Prerequisite(s): Summer reading assignment
  • Approved NCAA Course

In addition to the above description of CSC, this course moves at a faster pace, examines issues in a deeper way, and requires more responsibility outside of the classroom. To be successful, students need to effectively demonstrate their understanding of concepts within the context of community.   For learning goals and methods of assessments, see description of Creating Sustainable Communities (312)


Three Democracies (314)    1 credit Social Studies

  • Approved NCAA Course

Three Democracies explores the question of what it means to be a citizen in a republic. We examine the stories revealed in the stories of two “democracies” of the past: Fifth Century BCE Athens, the Roman Republic, and a third, the American Republic, 1789-present. Readings are taken almost exclusively from ancient sources such as Herodotus, Aeschylus, Euripides on and, in the case of contemporary America, essays, political speeches, party platforms, and public policies.

The fundamental concepts from politics, economics, political philosophy and public speaking are introduced in the historical context of the Athenian democracy and the Roman and American Republics. This course focuses on the written and spoken word of public political discourse using the Socratic

What will you Learn?

By examining the rise and fall of the Fifth Century Athenian Democracy and the Roman Republic,

Students will:

  • Understand how democratic institutions and the rule of law were created in Athens, the Roman Republic and today
  • Identify and explain the inherent challenges to democratic institutions
  • Identify the reasons why the Athenian Democracy and the Roman Republic dissolved
  • Analyze the challenges facing the American Republic today in light of the obstacles that tested the Athenian Democracy and the Roman Republic
  • Suggest solutions and/or possibilities for civic action to nourish and sustain the American democracy method of dialogue and class discussion.

How will you be Assessed?

  • Close read of complex, primary source text, analogy, class discussions, in-class debates, role plays, class projects and oral presentations
  • Formal writing assignments, assessments and projects each semester; mid-term and final exam and/or projects

Three Democracies Honors (318)    1 credit Social Studies

  • Approved NCAA Course

Students who wish for a more in-depth and rigorous examination of the primary source materials, may opt for the Three Democracies Honors course.   For learning goals and methods of assessments, see description of Three Democracies (314)


American Studies (333C)    2 credits Social Studies

  • Prerequisite(s): Recommendation of 10th grade English and History teacher
  • Approved NCAA Course

American Studies is a comprehensive survey of American history and literature. In the history section of American Studies, students will examine primary and secondary works of history to develop a clear historical narrative of the “American Experience.” In the English section,

students will read classic works of American fiction, non-fiction, poetry and plays. A key element of the English part of American Studies is that all literature will be studied in its historical context.

What will you Learn?

  • Historical events are experienced, recorded, and interpreted by individuals with different perspectives
  • A variety of forces, both human and non-human, interact to shape historical events
  • Human identity is influenced by a variety of factors
  • Individuals are able to make choices to change society

How will you be Assessed?

  • Class discussion, weekly journal entries, response to text, and homework assignments.
  • At least one formal essay per quarter; oral presentations; choice projects; mid-term and final project.

American Studies Honors (333A)    2 credits: 1 English and 1 Social Studies    

  • Prerequisite(s): Recommendation of 10th grade English and History teacher
  • Approved NCAA Course

This integrated humanities course is a comprehensive survey of American history and literature, from first contacts among peoples to modern political conflicts. Students will examine primary and secondary works of history alongside classic works of American fiction, nonfiction, poetry and plays.  We will focus on Americans’ practical experiences and the visions of society they developed.

What will you Learn?  

  • Students understand the world around them through questioning, analyzing information, and communicating their findings

How will you be Assessed?

  • Class discussion, five-minute writes, body polls, response to text writes, and homework assignments.
  • 1 extended research paper, 2 choice projects from different units, a minimum of 3 proficient formal argumentative essays, 2 oral presentations, Civil Rights research project, 2 found poems, Constitution children’s book, mid-term and final exam (both exams project-based).  All summative assessments will be evaluated using rubrics.

Psychology (355)    1/2 credit Social Studies

  • Approved NCAA Course

What will you Learn?

By examining ideas of great philosophers in Western Civilization students will consider the essential questions that all human beings grapple with as part of the human experience.

Students will:

  • Read and understand the essential teachings of the Pre-Socratics, Plato, Aristotle, Epicurius, Descartes, Locke, Hobbes, Rousseau, Marx, Camus, Sartre,  Mill,  Kant, Sandal and Frankel- this list changes each semester according to student interest
  • Identify, explain and analyze and evaluate philosophical beliefs as they relate to your own life
  • Integrate knowledge and perspectives from a variety of sources to set goals and make informed decisions about personal beliefs and challenges
  • Apply knowledge and perspectives from various philosophical writings  to real life situations and navigate ethical dilemmas
  • Plan and conduct a Socratic Dialogue for students, parents, teachers and community members in a Socrates Cafe

How will you be Assessed?

  • Close read of complex text and primary source materials, class discussions, participation in-class Socratic dialogue, class projects and oral presentations   
  • Two formal writing assignments, numerous “R and R” short writing assignments, student directed Socratic dialogue book discussion, facilitating a Community Socrates Café discussion

Street Law (347)    1/2 credit Social Studies

  • Approved NCAA Course

This course provides a general overview of law and the role that it plays in our society. Areas of focus include criminal law and juvenile justice, individual rights, contract law, housing law, and family law. Students are given practical information, helpful in our law-saturated society. The curriculum includes case studies, mock trials, role playing, small group exercises, and visual analysis activities.

What will you Learn?

  • Historical events are experienced, recorded, and interpreted by individuals with different perspectives.
  • Ask focused, probing, and significant questions that encourage inquiry around an issue of personal, community, or global relevance. Explain how a question reflects an enduring issue in the field.
  • Determine the validity and reliability of the document or information
  • After examining issues from more than one perspective, define and defend the rights and needs of others in the community, nation, and world.
  • Make predictions, decisions, or take a public stand based on an understanding of the past and present.
  • Evaluate how and why rules and laws are created, interpreted, and changed; establish rules and/or policies for a group, school, or community.

How will you be Assessed?

  • Street Law is discussion-based class. Main assessments include presentations, mock trials, group work, and debates.
  • Other assessments include textbook assignments and analysis of historic documents, law cases, and current events.

Economics: Money, the Market & You (346)    1/2 credit Social Studies

  • Approved NCAA Course

Economics is a driving force of human interactions and the study of economics often reveals why people and governments behave in particular ways. This course examines both microeconomics (focusing on the actions of individuals and industries) and macroeconomics (a much broader view of analyzing economic activity of an entire country or international marketplace). The focus of Economics is on how both of these approaches relate to our daily lives. In this course learning is done through texts, charts and visuals, games and simulations, films, and class discussions of current economic events to see the impact economics can truly have on our lives today.

What will you Learn?

Students understand the world around them through questioning, analyzing information, and communicating their findings.

  • Ask focused, probing, and significant questions that encourage inquiry around an issue of personal, community, or global relevance.
  • Revise explanations as necessary based on personal reflection, peer critique, and/or expert opinion.
  • Propose solutions to problems based on findings, and ask additional questions.

Students can apply economic principles to make decisions about the interactions between humans, the environment, government, and the economy.

  • Draw conclusions about how choices within various economic systems affect the environment in the state, nation, and/or world; evaluate and debate the ideological underpinnings of government and economic programs.
  • Analyze and interpret global economic issues and problems through an economic lens.  
  • Draw conclusions about how choices within various economic systems affect the environment in the state, nation, and/or world; evaluate and debate the ideological underpinnings of government and economic programs.
  • Examine the causes and long term effects of people’s needs and/or wants exceeding their available resources, and propose possible solutions.
  • Analyze the impact of media on buying, spending, and saving.

How will you be Assessed?

  • Class Discussions and Participation, Individual Journal Entries, Homework Assignments, and Quizzes.
  • Individual and Group Projects, Individual and Group Presentations, and a Final Research Project and Presentation.

Introduction to Philosophy (359)    1/2 credit Social Studies

  • Approved NCAA Course

In “Introduction to Philosophy” we will explore some of the fundamental questions that have challenged and perplexed human beings throughout the ages.

What will you Learn?

By examining ideas of great philosophers in Western Civilization students will consider the essential questions that all human beings grapple with as part of the human experience.

Students will:

  • Read and understand the essential teachings of the Pre-Socratics, Plato, Aristotle, Epicurius, Descartes, Locke, Hobbes, Rousseau, Marx, Camus, Sartre, Mill, Kant, Sandal and Frankel- this list changes each semester according to student interest
  • Identify, explain and analyze and evaluate philosophical beliefs as they relate to your own life
  • Integrate knowledge and perspectives from a variety of sources to set goals and make informed decisions about personal beliefs and challenges
  • Apply knowledge and perspectives from various philosophical writings  to real life situations and navigate ethical dilemmas
  • Plan and conduct a Socratic Dialogue for students, parents, teachers and community members in a Socrates Cafe

How will you be Assessed?

  • Close read of complex text and primary source materials, class discussions, participation in-class Socratic dialogue, class projects and oral presentations   
  • Two formal writing assignments, numerous “R and R” short writing assignments, student directed Socratic dialogue book discussion, facilitating a Community Socrates Café discussion

Sports & Society (360) 1/2 credit Social Studies

  • Approved NCAA Course

Sports serve as a lens to reflect and examine the layers of society that finds them so important. By studying sports and the multiple issues related to them, we can learn just as much, if not more, about the makeup and values of a particular society.

In this course students will examine and demonstrate their learning through personal written reflections, class debates, individual and group presentations, and a culminating research project and presentation. A large emphasis will be placed on class discussion and participation. Materials for this course will include articles, newspaper and magazine readings, selections from various books, pictures and other visual images, documentary films, and feature length movies.

What will you Learn?

  • Inquiry: Students understand the world around them through questioning, analyzing information, and communicating their findings.
  • Active Citizenship: Students act as citizens by understanding how governments function and by exercising their rights and responsibilities within their current societal structure(s).
  • Economics: Students can apply economic principles to make decisions about the interactions between humans, the environment, government, and the economy.

How will you be Assessed?

  • Class Discussions and Participation, Individual Journal Entries, and Homework Assignments.
  • Individual and Group Projects, Individual and Group Presentations, and a Final Research Project and Presentation.

Current Events (357A)    1/2 credit Social Studies

  • Approved NCAA Course

This course explores major events and contemporary issues in the news, while seeking to understand how they have developed from a historical perspective. Students analyze news accounts, newspapers, magazines, and digital media in an attempt to understand the issues facing our world today. The historical roots and the genesis of these problems are examined in light of significant domestic and foreign policy developments that have occurred in the United States and the world from 1945 to the present. As historians and critical media consumers we will also consider these questions: What is the role of media in a democratic society? How do reporters and editors interpret events we read about in the media? What ways is the news merely reported and in what ways is it “invented”? Original documents, YouTube clips, feature films, oral histories, documentary films, music, novels, and other supplemental sources are used to complement media sources.

What will you Learn?

  • You will learn more about the latest current events and how they have developed historically.
  • You will learn how to be a more critical consumer of mass media and how to find valid and reputable sources for information.
  • You will learn how to engage in civil dialogue with your peers in a way that deepens everybody’s understanding of the issues.
  • Students understand the world around them through questioning, analyzing information, and communicating their findings.
  • Students use geographic tools to analyze data, examine cultural information, and propose solutions to local and world issues.
  • Students can apply economic principles to make decisions about the interactions between humans, the environment, government, and the economy.

How will you be Assessed?

  • Close read and critical analysis of documents and various forms of media, class dialogue and debates, media projects, and quizzes
  • Projects, formal writing assignments, tests, and final exam and/or projects
  • All summative assessments and some formative assessments will be evaluated using a Learning Scale with clear Learning Targets.

Modern U.S. History: 1945-the Present (357)    1/2 credit Social Studies

  • Approved NCAA Course

This course in United States History will be an examination of major domestic and foreign policy events that have shaped the United States and the world from WWI to the present. We will examine significant domestic and foreign policy developments during each decade, placing emphasis on how these events have influenced our lives and our world today. Original documents, YouTube clips, feature films, oral histories, documentary films, music, novels and other supplemental sources will be utilized.

What will you Learn?

  • How can we create a society where every child has equal opportunity to achieve the American Dream?
  • What should America’s role in the world be?

How will you be Assessed?

  • Class activities will be discussion based, and students will be able to demonstrate their learning through dialogue, reaction papers, original projects, quizzes and tests.

Advanced Placement Modern European History (349)    1 credit Social Studies

  • Prerequisite: Recommendation of current history teacher.  
  • AP European History students are expected to take the College Board Exam.
  • Approved NCAA Course

AP European History focuses on developing students’ abilities to think conceptually about European history from approximately 1450 to the present and apply historical thinking skills as they learn about the past. Five themes of equal importance — interaction of Europe and the world, poverty and prosperity, objective knowledge and subjective visions, states and other institutions of power, and individual and society — provide areas of historical inquiry for investigation throughout the course. The course also allows teachers flexibility to teach certain topics of their choice in depth.  Students who take the AP Modern European History course are strongly encouraged to take the exam.

What will you Learn?  

  • These require students to reason historically about continuity and change over time and make comparisons among various historical developments in different times and places.

How will you be Assessed?

  • Assessments will be based on the components of the AP exam.  Students will practice: multiple-choice questions, short answer questions, writing a document based questions, and writing a free response essay.