Social Studies 8

This course introduces students to the history of the United States from the Articles of Confederation to the end of the 19th century. Using primary and secondary sources, they explore time and place in the nineteenth century America. Beginning with the political and intellectual transformations that preceded the Articles of Confederation, students review the ideas and principles that form the basis of our constitutional republic. Students further their understanding of American government from an in-depth study of the United States Constitution and the evolution of the government created during its first century. Students explore the challenges faced by a new nation and the role of political and social leaders in meeting these challenges. Students also analyze the nature and effect of territorial, demographic, and economic growth in the 19th century. They analyze and evaluate early attempts to abolish or contain slavery and to realize the ideals of the Declaration of Independence for all. In studying the Civil War and Reconstruction, students evaluate multiple causes, key events, and complex consequences of the war and its aftermath. Students are introduced to some of the major changes in American society in the last part of the 19th century as they explore large scale changes over time in the development of the United States. As students examine contemporary public issues during this course, they explore connections to issues of the past. Throughout the course, students learn to use historical evidence to both support historical arguments and to construct historical narratives facing the nation.
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