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SOCIAL STUDIES
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Listed below are all of the social studies classes available to high school students:

World Cultures 9

This course offers a summary of the major cultural regions of the world outside of the United States. The areas of concentration are Europe, East Asia, Latin America, Middle East, India and Africa. Each unit of study encompasses a comparative analysis of the political, economic, geographic, historical and social institutions of respective areas.

United States History 1

This course is designed to provide a study of the political, social, economic and cultural developments of the United States from European contact through industrialization of the late 19th century. Specific attention will be directed to the colonial era, establishment of the new nation, sectional problems, national growth, disunion, reconstruction and economic growth. Focus, as often as possible, will be on viewing the history of the United States through the lives of the people who created the new nation and the new society.

United States History 2

This course will thoroughly examine the political, economic and cultural development of the 20th century. Areas of focus will include America's role as a military and diplomatic power, the expansion of federal power with economic and social life and the rights conscious movement and their impact on legislation. Emphasis will be placed on connecting 20th century events to contemporary ones and analysis of persistent themes and trends in our history will be highlighted.

Advanced Placement United States History
(Weighted 0.1 - Students must take the AP Exam and score at least a "3" to receive the 0.1 weight value)

The Advanced Placement Program in United States History will provide an opportunity for juniors to pursue and receive credit for college-level course work. The course content will include topics that display United States history in a logical sequence. The colonial and revolutionary period to 1789, republicanism, nationalism and democracy (1789-1844), expansion, war and reconstruction (1845-1877), the new nation (1865-1895), foreign and domestic change (1895-1928), domestic and world crises (1929-1945) and contemporary America since 1945. (PREREQUISITES: B- in an AP course or department approval)

Government and Economics

The first semester of this course cover United States government, which includes the Constitution, the political process, the structure of government, the criminal justice system and the legal/court process. The second semester focuses on economics and major themes including: the various economic systems, the concept of globalization, the role of supply and demand, types of business systems, the impact of fiscal/monetary policy and the role of saving and investing.

Advanced Placement European History
(Weighted 0.1 - Students must take the AP Exam and score at least a "3" to receive the 0.1 weight value)

This course is intended as an equivalent to a six-credit undergraduate college course -- "History of Western Civilization." All sections of the course reflect college programs in terms of subject matter and approach. Therefore, content in intellectual-cultural, political-diplomatic and social-economic history form the basis for the course. Students are expected to demonstrate a knowledge of basic chronology and of major events and trends from approximately 1450 to the present.

Analysis and interpretation of original/primary source reading material are integral parts of the course. These features make the AP course unique among the other history course offerings. Even though the stated culmination of an AP course is the taking of the National College Board AP test in May, this is by no means an absolute requirement. This challenging course is also open to any outstanding history students who may merely seek personal enrichment and/or background in preparation for college. (elective Grades 10, 11, 12) (PREREQUISITES: Department approval)

Advanced Placement Government and Politics
(Weighted 0.1 - Students must take the AP Exam and score at least a "3" to receive the 0.1 weight value)

This course is a traditional college level survey elective in American Government. The major emphasis is placed on the study of American political ideology and the evolution of its democratic institutions. The student will develop a sophisticated understanding of majority rule democracy, constitutionalism and civil liberties. This course is specifically designed to meet the needs of the student who plans to take the AP exam in Government and Politics. (PREREQUISITES: B- in an AP course or department approval)

Advanced Placement Psychology
(Weighted 0.1 - Students must take the AP Exam and score at least a "3" to receive the 0.1 weight value)

This course is a traditional college-level survey elective in psychology. The major emphasis is placed on the systematic and scientific study of the behavior and mental processes of the human beings and other animals. The student will develop an in-depth understanding of theories, terms and major concepts in psychology. This course is specifically designed to meet the needs of the student who plans to take the AP exam in psychology. (PREREQUISITES: B- in an AP course or department approval, Grades 11-12)

Military History

This course will examine the critical moments of Modern America in the area of Military History. Taught in reverse chronological order, Military History focuses heavily on the wars of the 21st and 20th centuries. Afghanistan, Iraq, Vietnam, Korea, World War II, World War I, Spanish American War and the American Civil War are all major units of the course. Not only does the course cover the traditional aspects of weapons, leaders, strategies and tactics, it also includes political, social, economic and cultural aspects of warfare. Taking this course will all an American citizen to understand how American has become the world's superpower. The course will include much opportunity for discussion in military history which normally would not be facilitated in a genral social studies course. Day field trips to the U.S. Army Heritage Center and Gettysburg, as well as a trip to Skirmish USA, are part of the course. A weekend trip over Presidents' Day in February will highlight military sites in Virginia and Maryland. A World War I/World War II European trip over spring break allows for a more personal educational experience in the course. Through research-based projects, students will gain a more intense educational experience while learning research and presentation skills that will allow them to succeed at the collegiate level. (PREREQUISITE: B- in Social Studies, Grades 11-12)

Local History

This course traces the in-depth story of Berks County in relation to broad themes of American cultures. Local History is taught thematically in chronological order using the themes of: agriculture/business/economics, art/athletics/entertainment/recreation, military history, crime, disasters and catastrophes, religious diversity and uniqueness of Quakers/Amish/Mennonites, ethnicities and culture, geography, beginnings of Berks, and political history. Particular emphasis is placed on the people, places and material objects of Berks County in relation to the national story. Methods of instruction include Internet activities, local walks, field trips throughout Berks County and the local area, PowerPoint instruction, group activities and individual projects. A final family history project is included in the class so that students can learn more about their family's past and understand themselves. Throughout the course, students will not only learn about culture and history, but they will also reasearch techniques and skills that will benefit them in college. Over Spring Break, the instructor will lead a cultural/historical trip to places in Europe where large numbers of people that immigrated to Berks County originated. Before going on the trip, the class explores the connections in Europe tht are seen in Berks County today. Rotating cultural areas of study include British culture, Germanic culture, Eastern European culture and Italian culture. (PREREQUISITE: B- in Social Studies; Grades 11-12) *Not offered in 2013-2014

 
 
Governor Mifflin Middle School MR. JOHN ALTHOUSE, principal
 
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