Social Studies Department

 

Civics Course

Grade 9

Full Year

1 Credit, Required

Prerequisite: None

 

This course is required in the freshman year. It is designed to develop civics skills, further develop reading skills and create a knowledge base that will enhance a student's ability to meet or exceed the Maine Learning Results Standards for government and basic economics.

 

The course content includes the types, purposes and functions of government and economic systems, basic principles and democratic foundations of our American government with an emphasis on the organization and functions of the three branches of the federal government.  Individual rights and responsibilities provide a focus for this study. Current events and public policy issues are emphasized.

 


Honors Civics Course 210

Grade 9

Full Year

1 Credit

Prerequisite:  

Minimum NWEA Language Usage score of 228 in the fall or 232 in the spring.  Minimum NWEA Reading scores of 230 in the fall or 234 in the spring ****Or Student has received an average of 3.5 on the Freshman Honors Rubric and has received a 93 or higher in 8th grade Social Studies.  Rubric must be completed by 8th grade Social Studies teacher.

Honors Civics is designed specifically for those freshmen who truly excel in Social Studies and have demonstrated a keen understanding of and appreciation for government, politics and history. Excellent writing and reading comprehension skills are required for placement in this course. This course utilizes a senior-level American Government textbook and the class operates at a pace similar to the seniors' pace. This course begins with an in-depth review of the formation of and underpinnings of American democracy, followed by an intensive study of the U.S. Constitution and Amendments. Major focus areas will include, but are not limited to, landmark U.S. Supreme Court decisions, civil rights, beliefs and behaviors of individuals and political parties, and the three branches of government at the federal level.  Students will also be introduced to basic concepts in economics and business.


World History Course 220

Grades 10-12

Semester Course ½ Year

½  Credit

Prerequisite: None

This course will survey world history, geography, economics, and government through the following time period investigations: The Beginnings of Civilization; The Growth of Civilization; The World in Transition; The Beginnings of the Modern World; The Expansion of the Modern World.


Personal History Through Genealogy         Course 221

Grades 11 and 12

Semester Course ½ Year

½ Credit

Prerequisite: None

Personal History Through Genealogy, is reading and writing intensive. Each student well be asked to develop a personal viewpoint, through research, on specific major historical events. After collecting facts from textbooks and periodicals and then interviewing two adults;           (who have lived during those historical events or have knowledge of a family member’s involvement,) they will have an opportunity to express their viewpoints in oral and / or written essay form. Students will also write an autobiography, a mini-biography and construct a family history book.

This, hands-on, classroom experience is intended to motivate students to learn as well as encourage the retention of the information studied.  Each student will further develop their  skills in writing, geography and history.  Each activity will encourage written and oral communication, information-gathering, and evaluation skills.  It is also intended to encourage  an understanding of individual differences.


Western Civilization

Grades 10-12

Semester Course

½  Credit

Prerequisite: None

Western Civilization is the study of developments which have shaped history and affected modern political, economic and social systems. The emphasis will be on the development of civilization and the evolution of modern nations from a Western perspective. The course will start with the “Beginnings of the Modern World” 1300 - 1560, covering the Renaissance and Reformation; European Expansion and the rise of the European State; Colonialism; World Wars I and II; the Cold War; and the New World Order in the present-day.


U.S. History         Course 232

Grade 11

Full Year

1 Credit, Required

Prerequisite: None

United States History is required for all juniors and is a year long course.

The course is designed to examine major turning points in U.S. History and will include Westward Expansion, Native American Cultures, Age of Industry, World Wars, emergence of the U.S. as a superpower, the Great Depression, the New Deal Era, the Cold War and the impact of these events on the social, political and economic changes in the 1950’s and the 1960’s.  Time permitting we will also examine the impact of situations including, but not limited to,  the Counter Culture, Vietnam War, Watergate, and Reaganomics.  

Research skills, group work, technology, oral presentations, critical thinking skills and the reading of text materials and other periodicals with homework assignments will be emphasized to optimize course learnings and learning styles. A textbook serves as the basic learning tool however, material will also be presented in a variety of other forms including technology and periodicals. At the conclusion of the course, students may participate in the Veterans’ Interview Program that is held annually at the Cole Land Transportation Museum. Assessments may take a variety of forms including, but not limited to, essay writing, homework assignments, tests, presentations and projects.


Honors U.S. History  Course 230

Grade 10

Full Year

1 Credit

Prerequisite: Honors Civics and English instructor’s permission

 

Honors U.S. History Part One

This course begins with an intensive study of geography and westward exploration from the Pre-Columbian period to 1492.The second intensive study is the founding of European settlements on the North and South American continents, with particular emphasis on the different reasons for and methods and consequences of settlement. The third intensive study covers the growth of the English colonies, the road to the American Revolution, the development of the confederation and the drafting of the U.S. Constitution.  The fourth intensive study includes Jeffersonian and Jacksonian America. Considerable time and effort are devoted to setting the context for the American Civil War and examining America’s transportation revolution, westward expansion and immigration patterns.  The fifth intensive study is a thorough examination of the Civil War and the subsequent Reconstruction.

Research skills, group work, technology, oral presentations, critical thinking skills and the reading of text materials and other periodicals with homework assignments will be emphasized to optimize course learnings and learning styles.  

A textbook serves as the primary source of information however, material will also be presented in a variety of other forms including technology and periodicals. At the conclusion of the course students may participate in the Veterans’ Interview Program that is held annually at the Cole Land Transportation Museum. Assessments may take a variety of forms including, but not limited to, assigned homework, essay writing, presentations and projects.

 


AP U.S. History  Course 231

Grades 11, 12

Full Year

1 Credit

 

AP U.S. History is equivalent to two freshman college-level courses.  A review of Pre-Columbian through Reconstruction is provided both at the beginning of the year and at the end of the year prior to the Advanced Placement exam.  The intensive focuses are: post-Reconstruction, the Industrial Age, Populism, Progressivism and the Gilded Age, Nationalism, American’s economic and military expansion in the 20th Century, the Great Depression, civil rights and rise of Conservatism.  Students will take the AP U.S. History exam in May.  AP U.S. History incorporates the tenets of the Common Core and Maine Learning initiatives.

 


Psychology Course 241

Grade 12

Semester

½ credit

Prerequisite: None

Psychology is a semester long course that introduces students to the vast and diverse science of psychology.  Students will gain an understanding of why people think and act as they do as they explore the systematic and scientific study of the behavior and mental processes of human beings and other animals.  Topics include; psychological methods, biology and behavior, learning, memory, intelligence, stress and health, psychological disorders, and theories of personality.


Sociology 242

Grade 12

Semester

½ Credit

Prerequisite:  None

Sociology is a semester long course that introduces students to the disciplined scientific study of human society.  Students will explore ways in which their individual lives are shaped by society.  Some of the topics explored include: culture, socialization, groups and organizations, deviance, social class, social institutions, education, family and social changes.


Current World Problems Course 243

Grade 11-12

Semester

1/2 Credit

Prerequisite: None

 

Current World Problems is a study of issues facing our nation and nations around the world.  To achieve a greater understanding of the topics,  the course will ask students to consider the history of these issues and how that history provides context for and continues to influence how nations manage these issues. Our focus will be determined by the major events as they are happening in the world.  The course examines daily events as they unfold with a bi-weekly Current Event Conference.

The course employs The Choices Program, a curriculum developed by Brown University as the primary text with supplemental reading from a variety of sources including major newspapers,  

magazines and network programming.  This program is designed to foster civic skills and participation with a focus on reading, writing, with a major emphasis on class discussions.  


Advanced Psychology 244

Grade 12

Full Year

1 Credit

Prerequisite:  None

Advanced Psychology is a one year course designed to mirror an entry-level college course in Psychology.  The course will introduce students to the systematic study of the behavior and mental processes of humans.  Students will also learn about ethics and methods psychologists use in their science and practice.  


American Law and Trial Course 208

Grades 10-12

Full Year

1 Credit

Prerequisite: None

American Law and Trial is an introductory legal course which investigates many topics including criminal law, civil law, trial rules, court systems, juvenile law, discrimination, and search and seizure law. In addition to studying contemporary legal cases, students will be participating in such experiences as mock trials, visitation to area courts, and attending lectures with guest speakers. Students may also participate in the Officer Ride-Along Program that is offered in conjunction with this course.

 


Concurrent  US History 1 COURSE # 246

Grade 11

Full Year

1 Credit

Prerequisite: Teacher recommendation OR  Acceptance into Bridge Year Program

There is a fee to take this course

Students may choose to participate in early college history courses beginning in the junior year.  History 1 is the first in the series of two courses offered to students. Participation can occur through acceptance in the Bridge Year Program or through UMFK’s Rural U Program. The course begins with exploration of the New World in the 15th century and continues through to post Civil War Reconstruction.  Particular emphasis is given to the Revolutionary War, development of a new nation and the development of the U.S. Constitution, westward expansion, and the Civil War.  Students maintain dual-enrollment at Brewer High School and the cooperating university resulting in transcripts at both institutions.  This allows students to earn college credit by taking college-level courses at Brewer High School.  Applications for the Bridge Year Program are available in the spring of the sophomore year.  Participation in the Rural U Program is based on recommendation of course teacher.    


Concurrent  US History 2 COURSE # 247

Grade 12

Full Year

1 Credit

Prerequisite: Concurrent US History 1

There is a fee to take this course

History 2 is the second course in a series of two in United States History.  As with History 1, participation in this course can occur through acceptance in the Bridge Year Program or through UMFK’s Rural U Program. This course will begins with a study of the Second Industrial Revolution and continues through the 20th century.  Emphasis will be given to World Wars I and II, the Great Depression, the Civil Rights Movement, and the United State’s economic growth throughout the 20th century.  Students must have successfully completed History 1 in order to take this course.  Credit is granted at Brewer High School and the cooperating university resulting in dual transcripts and grades.  By participating in the Bridge Year Program or Rural U students are able to earn college credit while taking a college-level course at Brewer High School.