Primary content emphasis for this course pertains to the study of American history from the Exploration and Colonization period to the Reconstruction Period following the Civil War. Students will be exposed to the historical, geographic, political, economic, and sociological events which influenced the development of the United States and the resulting impact on world history. So that students can clearly see the relationship between cause and effect in historical events, students should have the opportunity to explore those fundamental ideas and events which occurred after Reconstruction. Honors/Advanced
courses offer scaffolded learning opportunities for students to develop the critical skills of analysis, synthesis, and evaluation in a more rigorous and reflective academic setting. Students are empowered to perform at higher levels as they engage in the following: analyzing historical documents and supplementary readings, working in the context of thematically categorized information, becoming proficient in note-taking, participating in Socratic seminars/discussions, emphasizing free-response and document-based writing, contrasting opposing viewpoints, solving problems, etc. Students will develop and demonstrate their skills through participation in a capstone and/or extended research-based paper/project (e.g., history fair, participatory citizenship project, mock congressional hearing, projects for competitive evaluation, investment portfolio contests, or other teacher-directed projects). Mathematics Benchmark Guidance
- Instruction of U.S. History should include opportunities for students to interpret and create representations of historical events using mathematical tables, charts, and graphs. Special Notes:
Additional content that may be contained in the NAEP Grade 8 United States History assessment includes material from all time periods
on the following topics:
- Change and Continuity in American Democracy: Ideas, Institutions, Events, Key Figures, and Controversies
- The Gathering and Interactions of Peoples, Cultures, and Ideas
- Economic and Technological Changes and Their Relationship to Society, Ideas, and the Environment
- The Changing Role of America in the World
The NAEP frameworks for United States History may be accessed at http://www.nagb.org/content/nagb/assets/documents/publications/frameworks/historyframework.pdf Instructional Practices
Teaching from well-written, grade-level instructional materials enhances students' content area knowledge and also strengthens their ability to comprehend longer, complex reading passages on any topic for any reason. Using the following instructional practices also helps student learning:
1. Reading assignments from longer text passages as well as shorter ones when text is extremely complex.
2. Making close reading and rereading of texts central to lessons.
3. Asking high-level, text-specific questions and requiring high-level, complex tasks and assignments.
4. Requiring students to support answers with evidence from the text.
5. Providing extensive text-based research and writing opportunities (claims and evidence).