African American Studies
This semester-long social studies course is designed to further student knowledge of the African American experience taught from a different lens than typical survey history courses. Students will be introduced to various thematic topics that focus on a non-traditional approach covering the journey of a slave from capture, to servitude, to emancipation, to struggles for understanding the complex meaning of freedom. The course will also look at present-day issues, including controversial subjects that African Americans face as a legacy of slavery. At the same time, the course will emphasize that African American history is quintessentially American history. Students will be assessed on inquiry-based projects, discussions, self-reflection and interpretation.
I. Introduction and Preperation
II. The Legacies of the Civil War
III. The Construction of Race
IV. Modern Challenges and Resiliency
A Story of Africans in America
Lens: Social, Political and Economic Issues
Students will understand (how):
- Historical documents are composed by individuals and groups with different points of view.
- Identify and assess the author’s claims, reasoning and evidence using more than one source of information.
- How principles and ideals are understood and applied in different historical contexts.
- Nationalism can serve as a force for unification and/or division
- Political symbols play an important role in patriotic activities and contemporary civic life.
- Civil disobedience and patriotic activities can serve as agents of change.
- What it means to be a citizen and the responsibilities & privileges that come with it
- The Supreme Court plays an important role in interpreting and analyzing the Constitution and its Amendments.
- Mass media influences public agendas and political life.
- How to think critically about historical events, considering both facts and opinions from multiple perspectives
- Understand cause and effect relationships within the context of continuity and change over time