Social Studies Department

Committed to the mission of developing responsible and ethical citizens as well as lifelong learners

The Berlin High School Social Studies Department is committed to the mission of developing responsible and ethical citizens as well as lifelong learners. Departmental courses actively engage students in the acquisition of theoretical, technological, and practical knowledge; rigorously challenge students to think creatively and critically, and encourage students to understand, accept, and appreciate the diverse nature of society. In particular, departmental courses prepare Berlin High School students to read critically, write effectively, and communicate clearly and persuasively. In this way, the Social Studies Department, its faculty and its courses, provides students the skills to achieve and to fulfill the expectations of their school and community.


Department Curriculum


Course Offerings:

The World and Its People, Part I

HS04061G The World and Its People, Part I
Full Year 1.00 credit
Grade 9

The World and Its People I

curriculum focuses on the history, cultures and geography of major regions of the world. Students enrolled in the full-year Grade 9 course will study Africa, the Middle East, South Asia and East Asia (particularly India, China and Japan). The study of these regions addresses a critical need for exposing students to historical and cultural aspects of key parts of the world that are socially and culturally different from our own. It is the goal of the course to impart to students a set of enduring understandings about human beings and their interactions, both past and present, to prepare them for life in a globalized society.

The World and Its People, Part II

HS04055G The World and Its People, Part II
1/2 Year .50 credit
Grade 10

This course is a continuation of the Grade 9 study in global history.  

Specific regions of the world—Western Europe and Russia/Eastern Europe—are studied with emphasis on history, culture, geography and contemporary issues of that part of the world. A variety of instructional approaches is employed. All students in Grade 10 are assigned to this course.

Civics

HS04161G Civics
1/2 Year .50 credit
Grade 10

Students will study the historical and contemporary conflicts of constitutional principles. They will investigate the rights and responsibilities of citizens, take positions on current issues and participate in civic projects. Investigations of local, state and federal governments will help prepare students to become active citizens in the present and future. Civics is a state-required course for graduation. Students are required to complete a performancebased assessment through the Civics course.

United States History I

HS04101G12 United States History I
Semester 1 .50 credit  
Grade 11

All students in Grade 11 enroll in United States History I & II, Advanced Placement U.S. History, or Advanced American Studies. The most important aspects of United States history from the 1880's to modern times are studied, with an emphasis on major social, cultural, political and economic developments of the time period.

United States History II

HS04101G22 United States History II
Semester 2 .50 credit
Grade 11

All students in Grade 11 enroll in United States History I & II, Advanced Placement U.S. History, or Advanced American Studies. The most important aspects of United States history from the 1880's to modern times are studied, with an emphasis on major social, cultural, political and economic developments of the time period.

**AP U.S. History

HS04104H **AP U.S. History
Full Year 1.00 credit
Grade 11

The AP United States History program is designed to provide students with the analytical skills and factual knowledge necessary to deal critically with the problems and materials in United States history.  Students will learn to assess historical materials and their relevance to a given interpretive problem, their reliability and their importance—and to weigh the evidence and interpretations presented in historical scholarship. Admission to an AP course should depend upon a student’s commitment to the subject as well as high aptitude. Student responsibility for reading and digesting material is a must. We encourage each member of this class to take the AP examination and is responsible for costs associated with the AP examination.

Civics II: The World and You

HS04199G Civics II: The World and You
1/2 Year .50 credit
Grade 10 or 11

This course will focus on duties and responsibilities of citizenship, and the relationship between individuals and society. Students will explore current issues in society and how these issues impact government and people. Students will research how history, media, special interest groups, politicians, and citizens influence the creation and solutions to local, state, national, and international issues. Students will participate in debates, group projects, community service projects and individual research in a pursuit to understand their own connection to the World.

**Humanities Man’s Search For Meaning

HS04302H **Humanities Man’s Search For
Meaning
(English .50, Social Studies .50)
Full Year 1.00 credit
Grade 12

This interdisciplinary class combines the study of philosophy, religion, art history, music and psychology showing students the interconnectedness of ideas in our lives. A sampling of topics will include the philosophical study of man’s place in the universe, good and evil, man and the state, the Florentine Renaissance, and creativity in our lives. Readings will be taken from Plato, Hume, Machiavelli, the Bible, the Koran, Bhagavad Gita, Buddhist sources and other historical writings.

Introduction to Law

 HS04162G Introduction to Law
1/2 Year .50 credit
Grade 10, 11, or 12

In this course, students will examine the reasons why one should know law and how it applies to our everyday lives. Concepts such as jurisdiction (federal, state and local), preparation for a trial, jury selection, types of courts, types of laws (criminal and civil) will be studied.

Introduction to Sociology

HS04258G Introduction to Sociology
1/2 Year .50 credit
Grades 11 or 12

The Introduction to Sociology curriculum is designed to allow students insight into and appreciation of the basic concepts of human relationships, their causes and consequences. This course will provide students with an understanding of these relationships through observation, research, readings and discussions regarding topics such as self, school and town community, American culture and society, group dynamics, pop culture and mass media, social problems, social institutions and human development.

Introduction to Anthropology

HS04251G Introduction to Anthropology
1/2 Year .50 credit
Grades 11 or 12

Anthropology is the cross-cultural study of human societies. This course is taught at the college level and a sophisticated level of student participation is expected. The course covers a wide range of societies worldwide and suggests what we might learn about ourselves based on an intensive examination of people whose cultures differ from our own.

Introduction to Psychology

HS04254G Introduction to Psychology
1/2 Year .50 credit
Grades 11 or 12

Can you really have a “great personality?” What does “smart” mean? How do we define insanity? This course will examine ideas such as personality, intelligence, emotion, human development, and psychological disorders such as depression and addiction. Readings and films will include both literary and historical sources.

**AP United States Government

HS04157H **AP United States Government
& Politics
Full Year 1.00 credit
Grades 11 or 12

Advanced Placement United States Government & Politics is a course designed for students who are ready to meet the demands of college level work.  Students will analyze and interpret political culture and behavior in the democratic process, rules governing elections, and political parties and agendas. They will critique both historical and contemporary events underpinning the ideologies and institutions of American government.

**AP World History

HS04057H **AP World History
Full Year 1.00 credit
Grades 11 or 12

This AP course, organized around key concepts and themes, covers six chronological periods of world history from 600 BCE to the present. The themes and key concepts are intended to provide foundational knowledge for future college-level coursework in history. Themes focus on interaction between humans and the environment; the development and interaction of cultures; statebuilding, expansion, and conflict; creation, expansion, and interaction of economic systems; and the development and transformation of social structures. The goal of the course is to develop historical thinking skills necessary to explore the broad trends and global processes. Accordingly, students will be able to craft historical arguments from historical evidence, use chronological reasoning and understand historical causation, compare and contextualize broader regional, national, and global processes, and engage in historical interpretation and synthesis. We encourage each member of this class to take the AP examination. Students are individually responsible for the costs associated with the examination.

**AP Psychology

HS04256H **AP Psychology
Full Year 1.00 credit
Grades 11 or 12

The AP Program offers a course and exam in psychology to qualified students who wish to complete studies in post secondary school equivalent to an introductory college course in psychology. The AP Psychology course is designed to introduce students to the systematic and scientific study of the behavior and mental processes of human beings and other animals. Students are exposed to the psychological facts, principles, and phenomena associated with each of the major subfields within psychology. They also learn about the ethics and methods psychologists use in their science and practice. We encourage each member of this class to take the AP examination. Students are individually responsible for costs associated with the AP examination.

**Political Theory

HS04153H **Political Theory
1/2 Year .50 credit
Grade 11 or12

This class will be run as a Socratic seminar where students will analyze political theories and institutions, and their relevance to the present.  Students will discuss how assumptions about human nature, economics, and individualism dictate politics.  They will question why politics is not an exact science and why politicians disagree. Students will determine when and if people should rebel against their government, and develop their own ideas on who should hold more power than others, if at all. They will question what creates justice in society, determine why the world is the way it is today, develop their own educated views on politics, and make predictions for the future.

Economic Development and Global Poverty

HS04249G Economic Development and Global
Poverty
1/2 Year .50 credit
Grade 11 or12

Over 1 billion people in the world today live on less than $1/day. This course aims to explore why this is so, and what can be done about it. Students in this class will examine and compare basic living conditions in countries throughout the world. Students will also develop an understanding of basic economic principles and terminology, and evaluate different approaches to solving poverty and improving the daily lives of people around the world.

Sports in American Society

HS04149G Sports in American Society
1/2 Year .50 credit
Grades 11 or 12

Students in this course will examine American history, society, and culture through the perspective of sports. Major topics of the course, including economic, ethnic, gender, and contemporary issues, will be explored through literature, film, research, and activities. Additionally, students will become familiar with social interaction, sports organization, social and psychological aspects of sports, team behavior, and the culture of sports at the professional, collegiate, high school, and youth levels.

Reel History I

HS11100G12 Reel History I
1/2 Year .50 credit
Grades 11 or 12

This course offers students the opportunity to study various historical events and issues through the eye of the camera. This one semester course presents movies ranging from Gladiators and Braveheart to Schindler’s List, Titanic and Thirteen Days. The course provides the context of the movie through reading and discussion. Assessment ranges from quizzes on the movies to an occasional paper.  

Students may take either or both “Reel History I” and “Reel History II.”

Reel History II

HS11101G22 Reel History II
1/2 Year .50 credit
Grades 11 or 12

This course offers students the opportunity to study various historical events and issues through the eye of the camera. The semester length course presents movies ranging from Forest Gump and American Graffiti to Malcolm X and Quiz Show. The course provides the context of the movie through reading and discussion. Assessment ranges from quizzes on the movies to an occasional paper. Students may take either or both “Reel History I” and “Reel History II.”

Wars that Changed the World

HS04065G Wars that Changed the World
1/2 Year .50 credit
Grades 11 or 12

This course will consist of an in-depth study of military engagements that have influenced World and United States history. The content of this course varies; however, the main areas studied include, but are not limited to, the U.S. Civil War, WWI, WWII, Vietnam, and the Cold War era. A heavy emphasis will be placed on current issues. For each war, we will investigate causes, technology used, strategy, tactics, and the life of the common soldier, the impact of the war on civilians, and the impact of the war on the world.

This course will examine the way countries work together to solve conflicts and look at the major wars around the world and how they have impacted history. Historical and contemporary examples of international warfare, revolutionary movements, civil war, and resource competition and refugee activity will be used to analyze conflict management and resolution. The primary goals of this course are to have the students understand how these conflicts began and how they affected the nations and peoples involved.


Lynn Addamo
David Bosso
Jeffrey Cronk
John Line
Amy Marchetti
Ryan Ott
Brendan Rush
Brianna Timbro
Jennifer Wilkosz 


DEPARTMENT CHAIR
Jeffrey Cronk | profile  
 860-828-6577 x4022
 jcronk@berlinschools.org


powered by finalsite