Seventh Grade Social Studies: American History I
WELCOME! I’m finally going to get to know you, and I look forward to a great year together! Even though this is a course in American history, we’re first going to tie together some of the threads of world history that you studied last year. In addition, the course will focus on how to be a good student historian: how to think “historically” and analytically, and how to carefully interpret sources about the past. You’ll learn to be a better thinker and problem solver, and sometimes we’ll have fun! Here are the topics we’ll study.
TOPICS OF STUDY
• Historical Inquiry Method
• Judging Reliability and Validity of Sources of Information
• Comparing and Contrasting
• Understanding Cause and Effect
• Expressing Critical Opinions
• Researching a Topic in History
• Writing Analytically (Essays)
• Public Speaking and Making Presentations
• The Historical Method
• Human Rights: Rights of Children, Social and Economic Rights
•Islam as a World Religion and Social System
•Introduction to the Renaissance and Reformation (things you need to know to
understand U.S. history)
•Exploration, Conquest, and Colonization of the Americas •Comparison of the Independence Movements of Colonial America and India
• Difficult Topics in U.S. History (such as Slavery and the Treatment of Native Americans)
CURRENT EVENTS TOPICS:
Events in the News
Amnesty International Chapter (selected Fridays at lunch)
United Nations Millennium Goals:
SOCIAL STUDIES AND COMMUNITY SERVICE
I believe that one of the most important reasons to study the past to become better citizens in the present. We will be studying the ongoing struggle in the world for human rights. As citizens of a democracy, we have a big job in protecting these rights even within our own borders, as well as in other places. The St. Luke’s Amnesty International Chapter will give you the opportunity to earn community service credit by writing letters on behalf of prisoners of conscience, people who are in jail for being “different” or for speaking their minds freely. In class, we will focus on social and economic rights, such as the right to clean water, to an education, or to adequate shelter. A couple of times this year, we will leave the block to participate in service learning activities that will enhance your understanding of these rights, including volunteering at St. Clement’s Food Pantry and Peter’s Place, a shelter for homeless elderly people.
The key to success as a student is o r g a n I z a t I o n! You know that, and you’ve heard it over and over again. We repeat it over and over again because it’s true.
Put together a three-ring binder with dividers. It should have at least the following sections in this order. No exceptions! Keep it neat!
1. Notes, Homework, and Handouts (keep in order of the topics studied).
This section includes old homework and new homework. Don’t separate your notes, homework, and handouts. Together, they will tell the story of the history you’re studying. If you keep the “story” together in this section, you’ll have study notes for quizzes and tests.
2. Quizzes, Tests, and Projects (things with grades on them)
I will be checking this section regularly. Make sure everything is signed.
EXPECTATIONS AND PROCEDURES
In the Classroom:
1. Follow all the rules of St. Luke’s School.
2. Be on time and prepared. Being late disturbs others.
3. Do all homework to the best of your ability so that you can participate fully in class.
4. Respect the property of others and treat your own things well.
5. Be polite at all times.
6. Be responsible when absent by asking for and completing all makeup work.
7. Help making learning a top priority in this classroom!
8. Laugh and smile frequently throughout the day.
Take your assignments seriously – and I will do my best to keep you challenged and interested. Remember the importance of turning your work in on time. Late work will be recorded with half the points. There are no points for missing assignments (it’s really worth doing the work, even if it’s late). Ask for makeup work. It’s your responsibility, but I will be supportive in helping you to get it done.
You can check the homework blog for daily assignments and project/test due dates.
Assignments are recorded as points in the grade book, and grades are given based on an attained percentage of points. I will only mark letter grades on quizzes, tests, writing assignments, and projects.
A 93 – 100 B+ 87 – 89 C+ 77 - 79 D 65-69
A- 90 – 92 B 83 – 86 C 73 – 76 Below 64 does not
B- 80 – 82 C- 70 – 72 meet requirements
Grades are divided into two main parts which are equally important to the final mark each trimester. Hard work and organization are just as important as testing for success (in real life as well as in school).
Daily Grades (1/2)
Test Grades and Project Grades (1/2)
1. A parent, Ms. Spyropoulos, and team coaches will be notified about a pattern of missing or late work.
2. A parent will also be notified if you make a C- or below (below 73) on any test or quiz.
3. Please have your parents sign all project descriptions, quizzes, tests, and graded assignments so they know what’s going on in social studies.
I WANT TO HELP YOU ! ASK ME!
Please ask for help when you need it. You may email me at: firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also check for homework on the BLOG. I want you to be confident and successful as you move on to high school. Let’s work as a team!