U.S. History II
Welcome to US II for the 2015 - 2016 school year! This year we will be exploring the extreme changes that the United States has gone through during the twentieth century. We will begin by looking at American imperialism in the late 1800s and end by examining our nation today. During the process, we will be learning about America's role in the two World Wars, the Great Depression, the Cold War, the Civil Rights Movement, and many other important developments in our nation's history.
Students will be expected to see me when they miss school about making up missed work. In general, aside from extenuating circumstances, students have a day for each day they are absent to make up work.
One of the major themes of the school year will be going paperless, and we will definitely be striving for that in US II. Each class has an Edmodo account, which is essentially a virtual classroom that allows students to post and reply to others' comments, submit their assignments, and communicate with the rest of the class at any time. Additionally, we have Google classrooms in place, which are similar to Edmodo classrooms. All students have been given Google accounts through their homerooms, and with these accounts they have a school email and a Google Drive that enables them to save all of their work digitally and access it anywhere.
Students will get as much out of this course as they put in to it. Have a great school year!
In addition to teaching U.S. II, I also co-teach Parallels with English teacher Mr. Gluckman. This class explores both literature and history through the reading of novels and works of nonfiction. The class is structured as a Socratic seminar, in which students and teachers alike sit in a circle and discuss the works being read. This structure encourages - in fact, it demands - participation from all of its members. Parallels is unique and differs from a traditional high-school class in that, as opposed to the teacher driving the instruction, whatever text the class is reading essentially serves as the teacher. Teachers and students stand on equal footing (this is perhaps most noticeable in the way teachers and students address one another by surnames) and, through discussions prompted by questions generated by all members of the class, attempt to come to a deeper and more nuanced understanding of the text at hand. While this is an honors-level class with significant reading at times, past members have noted that they do not feel overwhelmed but rather empowered by the class. Moreover, students credit the class specifically for readying them for upper-level college classes.
Here is a link to the Parallels class, which is meticulously maintained by Mr. Gluckman: