AP US History Syllabus
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  • 1. Advanced Placement United States History<br />Department: Social Studies<br />Teacher: Angela Cunningham<br />E-mail: angela.cunningham@bullitt.kyschools.us<br />Website: http://blogs.bullittschools.org/iclassroom<br />Course Description: Advanced Placement United States History is a challenging course designed to provide students with the analytic skills and factual knowledge necessary to deal critically with the problems and materials in United State history. It is a year-long survey course of American history, from the Pre-Columbian era to the present. Solid reading and writing skills, along with a willingness to devote considerable time to homework and study, are necessary to succeed. Emphasis is placed on critical and evaluative thinking skills, essay writing, interpretation of original documents, and historiography. <br />Course Goals: Students will comprehend, analyze, and interpret historical events and conditions, historical and geographic context, trends, and issues to develop an understanding of American history. Students will be better prepared for college by engaging and participating in a class that stresses an academically challenging and rigorous curriculum. The course is designed and intended to replicate a college-level survey course.<br />Course Themes: Regardless of the time period discussed, students will be able to look at history using one or all of the twelve Advanced Placement United States History themes:<br />American Diversity<br />American Identity<br />Culture<br />Demographic Changes<br />Economic Transformations<br />Environment<br />Globalization<br />Politics and Citizenship<br />Reform<br />Religion<br />Slavery and Its Legacies<br />War and Diplomacy<br />Main Textbook:<br />The American Pageant, David M. Kennedy, et. al, Boston: Houghton Mifflin; 13th Advanced Placement edition, 2006.<br />Primary Source Document Reader:<br />The American Spirit, by David M. Kennedy, et. al, Boston: Houghton Mifflin; 11th edition, Volumes 1 & 2, 2006.<br />Additional readings will be assigned & distributed as needed.<br />Course Planner: Below you will find an outline for the class. Students can expect some kind of reading or writing assignment every day, often using primary source documents. All out-of-class assignments, include readings, must be completed before the beginning of class on the assigned due date.<br />Unit 1: Founding the New Nation <br />Textbook Reading: Kennedy, Chapters 1-8<br />Approximate Length: 20 days<br />Major Topics:<br />New World Beginnings<br />The English Colonies<br />Colonial Society<br />Revolutionary America<br />A System of Government<br />Unit 2: Building the New Nation<br />Textbook Reading: Kennedy, Chapters 9-15<br />Approximate Length: 20 days<br />Major Topics:<br />A New Republic<br />Jeffersonian America<br />The War of 1812<br />The Age of Jackson<br />The Market Revolution<br />Unit 3: Building the New Nation<br />Textbook Reading: Kennedy, Chapters 16-22<br />Approximate Length: 20 days<br />Major Topics:<br />The Antebellum Renaissance<br />Manifest Destiny<br />On the Brink of War<br />The American Civil War<br />The Trials of Reconstruction<br />Unit 4: Forging an Industrial Society<br />Textbook Reading: Kennedy, Chapters 23-29<br />Approximate Length: 20 days<br />Major Topics:<br />The Great West<br />The Gilded Age<br />The Growth of Industry<br />Progressive Reform<br />The Expanding Government<br />Unit 5: Empire & Expansion<br />Textbook Reading: Kennedy, Chapters 28-30<br />Approximate Length: 15 days<br />Major Topics:<br />The New Imperialism<br />The Spanish American War<br />Three Foreign Policies<br />World War I<br />The Treaty of Versailles<br />Unit 6: Prosperity & Depression<br />Textbook Reading: Kennedy, Chapters 31-33<br />Approximate Length: 15 days<br />Major Topics:<br />Postwar Tensions<br />Popular Culture in the 1920s<br />The Politics of Normalcy<br />The Great Depression<br />The New Deal & Its Legacy<br />Unit 7: The Shadows of War<br />Textbook Reading: Kennedy, Chapters 34-38<br />Approximate Length: 15 days<br />Major Topics:<br />World War Looms<br />On the Home Front<br />World War II<br />Origins of the Cold War<br />Fighting Communism<br />Unit 8: Making Modern America<br />Textbook Reading: Kennedy, Chapters 36-38<br />Approximate Length: 20 days<br />Major Topics:<br />The Postwar Boom<br />Popular Culture in the 1950s<br />The Civil Rights Movement<br />The Great Society<br />The Vietnam War<br />The Fractured Left<br />Unit 9: Building a New World Order<br />Textbook Reading: Kennedy, Chapters 39-42<br />Approximate Length: 10 days<br />Major Topics:<br />The Nixon Administration<br />The Carter & Ford Years<br />The Reagan Revolution<br />Ending the Cold War<br />Social Concerns in the 1980s<br />Passage to a New Century<br />Description of Major Assignments:<br />Reading Assignments: Students will be assigned reading homework (i.e., textbook, primary source documents, articles) every night. Most reading assignments will also include a written task (i.e., questions, graphic organizers). Assignments and their due dates will be posted in the classroom and online every Monday.<br />Essay Assignments: For each unit, students will complete an essay assignment. Whenever possible, students will answer questions used on previous AP United States History exams.<br />The Document Based Question (DBQ) requires students to evaluate numerous primary source documents in order to formulate an essay response. In addition, students are also required to include information not found in the supplied documents in their essays.<br />The Free Response Question (FRQ) requires students to choose from two possible essay topics. Students are required to cite relevant historical evidence in support of their generalizations and to present their arguments clearly and logically.<br />Term Paper Assignment: During the second semester, students will complete a 5-8 page term paper addressing an important topic in American history. More details will be made available in December. <br />Additional Assignments: In addition, students will complete a number of long-term assignments throughout the year. Projects and their due dates will be posted in the classroom and online at least one week in advance.<br />Late Work Policy: Late work will be accepted, but only under the following guidelines:<br />1 day late = 10% deduction<br />2 days late = 30% deduction<br />3 days late = 50% deduction<br />4 or more days late = NOT ACCEPTED<br />All LATE work must be made up after school. This does not include assignments missed due to an EXCUSED absence. In the event of an UNEXCUSED absence, students may NOT earn more than 50% of the available credit for an assignment. This includes tests and quizzes.<br />Class Materials: You will need to purchase following items for class.<br />
    • 3-Ring Binder (1”-2”)
    • 2. Loose Leaf Paper
    • 3. Tab Dividers (10 Tabs)
    • 4. Flash Drive (1+ Gig)
    • 5. Index Cards (4”x6”)
    • 6. Highlighters
    • 7. Post-It Notes
    The faculty and administration reserve the right to change this class syllabus as deemed necessary.<br />Please take this syllabus home and review it with your parent(s)/guardians. You are expected to return this portion, along with the required information and signatures on or before ________________________.<br />Student Name________________________________________________________________________<br />Parent/Guardian Name(s)_______________________________________________________________<br />Student Lives With ____________________________________________________________________<br />Home Address________________________________________________________________________<br />Home Phone #________________________________________________________________________<br />Work Phone #________________________________________________________________________<br />Which phone number do you prefer I try first? _______________________________________________<br />Best time/place to reach you_____________________________________________________________<br />Parent/Guardian E-mail ________________________________________________________________<br />What is something that your child does really well? ___________________________________________<br />What is something that your child is nervous about? __________________________________________<br />Does your child have any medical issues I should know about? Please explain. <br />____________________________________________________________________________________<br />I have read & understand the course expectations for Mrs. Cunningham's class for the 2011-2012 school year.<br />Student Signature_____________________________________________________________________<br />Parent/Guardian Signature______________________________________________________________<br />