Social Studies

social studies

Social Studies

The Social Studies Department is designed to prepare the student to become a contributing Christian member of the American political system. Students must choose either European History or World Geography during their first or second year of high school. During the junior year, students take United States History and as seniors they take a course combining Civics and Free Enterprise.


Western Civilization

Western Civilization

  • General overview of european history starting with the Neolithic period and ending with WWII
  • Course focuses on cultural diffusion, forms of governments, and how the rise and fall of these cultures lead to the formation of new civilizations
  • Students are required to evaluate the intertwining of civilizations and be able to compare and contrast these individual groups

Western Civilization Honors

  • Course presents a general overview of the history from the Neolithic period to the Modern era
  • Focuses on cultural diffusion and the causes and effects that led to the rise and fall of various civilizations leading to the modern world we know today
  • Students are required to evaluate various primary and secondary sources from cultures and time periods discussed in class.

European History Honors AP

  • Course requires students to engage in the dynamics of continuity and change across the historical periods included in the course
  • Taught to analyze the processes and causes involved in these continuities and changes
  • Focus on five overarching themes:
    • Interaction between humans and the environment
    • Development and interaction of cultures
    • State-building, expansion, and conflict
    • Creation, expansion, and interaction of economic systems
    • Development and transformation of social structure

World Geography

World Geography

  • Required course for all entering 8th grade students
  • Uses the latest technologic tools such as GPS, digital cameras, computer software to learn geographic skills
  • Skills include map reading, graph analysis, and chart interpretation
  • Field Trips to reinforce what is taught in the classroom
  • Study of the world’s cultures and physical geography

World Geography Honors

  • Students must meet certain academic requirements
  • Same topics as World Geography but with more enrichment activities
  • Reinforce analytical thinking skills
  • Students placed concurrently in English I Honors

United States History

United States History

  •  Chronological survey of the development of the country’s political, social, and economic institutions
  • In addition to studying the events of America’s past, students are required to evaluate differing interpretations of our nation’s history
  •  Major emphasis of the instruction is in the area of political and diplomatic history

United States History Honors Course Overview

  • Chronological survey of all aspects of American History with emphasis on economic and political developments
  • Students will engage the American past as active learners
  • Students will have assignments such as collecting and analyzing primary documents that will involve historical research into significant issues and events
  • Students will learn about the flesh and blood individuals ‘both heroic and villainous’ whose successes and failures have enlivened American History
  • Students will gain a perspective on past events which will allow them to understand and evaluate current political and economic issues

United States History AP Course Overview

  • College-level survey of all aspects of American History, including how that history has been variously interpreted by historians
  • Students will read extensively in both the primary and secondary literature of American History
  • Students will learn to analyze and interpret history, engaging in critical thinking exercise that will inform their lives as college students and adults
  • The culmination of the class is the Advanced Placement examination which offers three hours of college credit in
    American History



Law Studies

Law Studies Course Overview

  • Half-year elective course
  • Areas of law discussed include Tort Law, Contract Law, Criminal Law, Constitutional Law, and Family Law
  • Understanding and application of the litigation and mediation process
  • A possible mock trial to practice what has been learned in the classroom
  • A field trip to a courtroom in which actual courtroom procedures are applied to accused criminals
  • Numerous guest speakers including district attorneys, tax attorneys, state police troopers, federal probation officers, vice detectives

Civics/Free Enterprise/ United States Government and Politics

Civics/Free Enterprise

  • Examines the background, principles, nature, and structure of American government.
  • Emphasis is placed on the responsibility of citizens as well as their fundamental rights.

Civics/Free Enterprise Honors AP

  • College level class
  • Advanced study of the United States Government and Politics
  • Curriculum determined by the College Board
  • Major objective of the course: score 3, 4, or 5 the AP Exam in order to earn college credit

United States Government and Politics AP

  •  Analytical perspective on government and politics in the United States
  • General concepts used to interpret U.S. government and politics and the analysis of specific examples
  • Familiarity with the various institutions, groups, beliefs, and ideas that constitute U.S. government and politics
  • Variety of theoretical perspectives and explanations for various behaviors and outcomes
  • Advanced Placement testing





  • Economic principles, organization, and operation of the U.S. economy
  • Examine current economic topics including fundamental economic problems, the circular flow of income, supply and demand, the price system, functions of government in capitalism, business fluctuations, fiscal and monetary policies, international economics as well as basic and personal finance
  • Practical experience includes preparation of balance sheets, income statements, worksheets, and tax forms. Students will participate in a Internet-based stock market project as part of the course. (This course will be offered if a sufficient number of students request it. Class size may be limited.)



  • Senior half year elective course
  • Introduces key psychological terms and theories
  • First half of the semester focuses on cognitive thinking, child development, adolescent development, and
  • Second half of the semester focuses on perception, sensations, and psychological disorders
  • Documentaries, case studies, and self-observations aid in grasping the concepts of the course
*The student commits to participate in advanced placement testing.


Mrs. Melanie Williams, B.M.E., Department Chair
Mr. Michael Cappo ’00, B.A.
Mr. David Falati, B.S.
Mr. Steven G. Kubicki, B.A.
Mr. Jeffrey Lupo ’92, B.A.

Mr. Mark Bordelon, B.I.D.S., Assistant Department Chair
Mrs. Amy Peavey, B.S.
Mr. Philip Sims ’91, B.S., J.D.
Mrs. Rebecca Stroud, B.A.
Mr. Christopher Vicknair, B.A.

Helpful Links:

National Geographic
This site contains maps, news, and pictures from around the world.

History Link 101
History Link 101 classifies history by culture and provides pictures, maps, and research of each time period.

US Historical Documents
The major US Historical Documents are available in chronological order. This site is an excellent for research and paper citations.

U.S. History by Online Highways
This site provides an overview of the various era of U.S. History. Tables and maps are also available.

Civics Online
Civics Online contains multimedia resources, a glossary, and a timeline of events and terminology important to the study of Civics and Government.

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