U.S. History

Full-year course. This is a survey course of U.S. history from the colonial period through the end of the twentieth century. The organizing feature as we proceed through the centuries of our past will be the query: “How has United States history promoted or belied America’s ideals of political equality, natural rights, and sovereignty of the people?” By practicing the same historical thinking skills and tools that professional historians employ and by engaging with rich primary sources, students will deepen their appreciation for the work and subtleties of history. We will also examine objects from material culture to inform our study of history and hone skills used in the museum field. The class is not lecture-based, but is run as a modified “flipped classroom.” Students will be expected to read, watch films, and engage in discussion posts outside of class, so that the bulk of class time will be available to address content and big questions, analyze primary sources, and engage in collaborative, small-group learning activities. When taken in combination with our Literature of the New World course, students will receive the integrated Great Books and History coverage recommended in The Well-Trained Mind. 

"I learned so many important skills in this class, and the instructor helped me to grow in my historical thinking skills and use them to evaluate and learn from history. The instructor guided us through pivotal moments in history and helped us to learn from it and see the historical importance of it by connecting the present with events in the past. This class inspired me and motivated me to continue learning about history and viewing current events through a historical lens. I am so grateful and very glad that I took this class, as I have gained invaluable knowledge and experience that I will use for the rest of my life."
- Student Course Evaluation 2020-2021

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    U.S. History Information

    • Example Syllabus
    • Class meets once per week for 50-55 minutes.
    • Class cap: 20 students.
    • Designed for grades 10-12.
    • High school students may be awarded 1 Social Sciences credit upon completion of this course.

    Course Materials

    • Click here to purchase the course texts:
      • A Little History of the United States, James West Davidson
      • Historical Thinking Skills: A Workbook for U.S. History, John P. Irish

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