History Of The Americas Syllabus
SS 11 (Fall/Spring)
Instructor : Riley Gardner
History of the Americas
In this History of the Americas course, the focus is on the peoples of the Americas and the historical events that have shaped these two continents. While the history of the United States will have emphasis, the class will also look extensively at Latin America & Canada and how relationships have evolved over time. Close attention will be given to the specific places and regions in which students are travelling, in the form of Case Studies.
Reoccurring themes include expansion, migration, immigration & interactions between cultures; independence, liberty, & freedom; governments & foreign policy; revolutions; effects of technology; and human rights & social justice.
Throughout their studies of places, events, & peoples, students will build an understanding of historiography—the writing of history—and an awareness of the lens through which historians, themselves and others view history. This is achieved through ongoing critical analysis of historical sources & data, using the OPVL method.
In addition to a host of primary and secondary historical documents, students will contact source materials such as videos and films, political cartoons, song lyrics and paintings, and the wealth of information available on the Internet. They will develop capabilities to comprehend, analyze, explain, interpret, organize, and present historical information, while also building empathy and understanding for peoples across time and space.
Texts and Resources
Excerpts from Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong by James W. Loewen. 2007.
Excerpts & Film from Diamond, Jared. Guns, Germs & Steel.
Excerpts from A People’s History of the United States of America by H. Zinn
Excerpts from Modern Latin America by Thomas Skidmore and Peter H. Smith
Excerpts from Sources of Twentieth-Century World History by Overfield
Excerpts from IB History of the Americas Course Book. Leppard, Berliner, Mamauz, Rogers.
Homework/classwork - 15%,
Tests - 25%,
Contribution - 20%
Dialogue is a most important component to learning. Students are expected to participate in class discussions, and to support others’ participation in the class’s dialogue. In order to participate, it is essential that students read assigned texts, complete homework assignments, & bring the necessary supplies to class.
Student arrives to class prepared and on time, ready to learn
Student contributes meaningful comments and questions that are useful to class discussion.
Student shows up on time but is not prepared or visa versa.
Student makes some contributions, but leaves the instructor wanting a bit more from the student.
Student shows up late, and unprepared.
Student does not or barely contributes to class discussion.
Assignments & Assessments
Students will engage in a variety of learning exercises that will be completed both in and outside of class time. These will include maps, discussion questions, reading assignments, and short and sustained research assignments. To get the most out of the class, it is essential that students complete class assignments for their due date, as learning is cumulative and each assignment builds on the ones before. Additionally, there will be regular quizzes and accumulative tests and final projects at the end of each quarter.
Tardy Policy and Being Prepared
It is important that each team member helps us stay on track with our daily schedule. Being prompt to classes is an important responsibility for each teacher and student. Students arriving late to class will be given two warnings. On the third tardy, the student will be “pulled off the water/rock” for 1 day. Any student arriving later than 5 minutes for a class will be “pulled off the water/rock” that same day, even if a previous warning had not been issued. Tardiness does not just mean showing up on time, but showing up prepared. Students will be expected to arrive at the beginning of class with all their school resources and personal needs met, and ready to participate.
I would prefer to have a nice, open classroom where we can have lax rules and policies regarding food, bathrooms, technology, etc. If everyone can be responsible and behave as adults, I do not think this should be a problem. If the class proves that we can not be adults about these types of subjects, policies will be put into place to address these problems.
Plagiarism and Academic Honesty
We strive for integrity and honesty in our lives… shouldn’t this extend to our academics? Plagiarism, or submitting someone else’s work or ideas as your own, will not be tolerated at World Class. Any plagiarism, cheating, or other forms of academic dishonesty will result in a zero or incomplete on the assignment/test, as well as facing potential academic probation or in some cases, expulsion from the school as seen appropriate by the WCA administration.
Respect and Expectations
The best education takes place where students feel comfortable to learn, express, and think in a safe environment. WCA students and faculty are expected to treat each other with respect and with an open mind. As a school our team will be varied in background, customs, beliefs, and ideas. This is one big advantage to our education. Please be respectful and treat others the way you would like to be treated. Encourage and support others… and they will do the same for you.
*** All of this is subject to change and adjust at the discretion of the teacher or administration of WCKA.
Sept. 05, 2017 - Gardner, Riley