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High School | Social Studies | History

Understand events, trends, individuals and movements shaping the history of the United States and other nations. George Santayana said "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it." In a broader sense, students who can examine and analyze the events of the past have a powerful tool for understanding the events of today and the future. They develop an understanding of how people, nations, actions and interactions have led to today's realities. In the process, they can better define their own roles as participating citizens.

Learning Objectives Grades 9-10

Apply the skills of historical analysis and interpretation:

  • Analyze and report historical events to determine cause-and-effect relationships.
  • Compare competing historical interpretations of an event.

Understand the development of significant political events:

  • Identify political ideas that have dominated United States historical eras (e.g., Federalist, Jacksonian, Progressivist, New Deal, New Conservative).
  • Identify political ideas that began during the Renaissance and the Enlightenment and that persist today (e.g., church/state relationships).
  • Identify political ideas from the early modern historical era to the present which have had worldwide impact (e.g., nationalism/Sun Yat-Sen, non-violence/Ghandi, independence/Kenyatta).

Understand the development of economic systems:

  • Explain how trade patterns developed between the Americas and the rest of the global economy, 1500 - 1840.
  • Analyze the impact of westward expansion on the United States economy.
  • Describe how American economic institutions were shaped by industrialists, union leaders and groups including Southern migrants, Dust Bowl refugees, agricultural workers from Mexico and female workers since 1914.
  • Describe the growing dominance of American and European capitalism and their institutions after 1500.
  • Compare socialism and communism in Europe, America, Asia and Africa after 1815 CE.
  • Describe the impact of key individuals/ideas from 1500 - present, including Adam Smith, Karl Marx and John Maynard Keynes.
  • Describe how the maturing economies of Western Europe and Japan led to colonialism and imperialism.

Understand United States and world social history:

  • Describe the immediate and long-range social impacts of slavery.
  • Describe unintended social consequences of political events in United States history (e.g., Civil War/emancipation, National Defense Highway Act/decline of inner cities, Vietnam War/anti-government activity).
  • Identify significant events and developments since 1500 that altered world social history in ways that persist today including colonization, Protestant Reformation, industrialization, the rise of technology and human rights movements.

Understand United States and world environmental history:

  • Describe the causes and effects of conservation and environmental movements in the United States, 1900 - present.
  • Describe different and sometimes competing views, as substantiated by scientific fact, that people in North America have historically held towards the environment (e.g., private and public land ownership and use, resource use vs. preservation).
  • Describe how cultural encounters among peoples of the world (e.g., Colombian exchange, opening of China and Japan to external trade, building of Suez canal) affected the environment, 1500 - present.
  • Describe how migration has altered the world’s environment since 1450.

Learning Objectives Grades 11-12

Apply the skills of historical analysis and interpretation:

  • Analyze historical and contemporary developments using methods of historical inquiry (pose questions, collect and analyze data, make and support inferences with evidence, report findings).
  • Explain the tentative nature of historical interpretations.

Understand the development of significant political events:

  • Describe how modern political positions are affected by differences in ideologies and viewpoints that have developed over time (e.g., political parties’ positions on government intervention in the economy).
  • Analyze how United States political history has been influenced by the nation’s economic, social and environmental history.
  • Analyze worldwide consequences of isolated political events, including the events triggering the Napoleonic Wars and World Wars I and II.
  • Describe how tensions in the modern world are affected by different political ideologies including democracy and totalitarianism.
  • Analyze the relationship of an issue in world political history to the related aspects of world economic, social and environmental history.

Understand the development of economic systems:

  • Analyze how and why the role of the United States in the world economy has changed since World War II.
  • Analyze the relationship between an issue in United States economic history and the related aspects of political, social and environmental history.
  • Explain how industrial capitalism became the dominant economic model in the world.
  • Describe how historical trends in population, urbanization, economic development and technological advancements have caused change in world economic systems.
  • Analyze the relationship between an issue in world economic history and the related aspects of political, social and environmental history.

Understand United States and world social history:

  • Analyze the relationship between an issue in United States social history and the related aspects of political, economic and environmental history.
  • Analyze the relationship between an issue in world social history and the related aspects of political, economic and environmental history.

Understand United States and world environmental history:

  • Analyze positive and negative aspects of human effects on the environment in the United States including damming rivers, fencing prairies and building cities.
  • Analyze the relationship between an issue in United States environmental history and the related aspects of political, economic and social history.
  • Analyze how technological and scientific developments have affected human productivity, human comfort and the environment.
  • Analyze the relationship between an issue in world environmental history and the related aspects of political, economic and social history.

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