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Social Studies Teachers

Melissa Beukema   Government /Economics, IB SL Communism

Thomas Cox  Geography/Government/Economics

Mary Dierkes  US History/World History

Ross Johnson   US History, Intro. to Social Studies

Mark McKenzie Government /Economics,  IB Theory of Knowledge, Psychology

Aaron Percy IB History of the Americas HL (Yr 1 and Yr 2)

Brian Perkins  Honors Geography 9, US History

Matthew Pronley   AP US History, World History

Eduardo Romo  US History/World History

Lindsay Sykes    IB History of the Americas SL Yr 1, Honors Geography

Kevin Zonnefeld  Geography, African American History

All courses are offered for Social Studies credit except as otherwise noted

All classes are a year in length except as otherwise noted
HONORS GEOGRAPHY 9                                             02101
Grade 9
Prerequisite: None
The Geography class will challenge students to use the tools of geography to view, analyze, and understand the world around them. Hands-on classroom activities will expose students to critical contemporary geographic issues, such as the effects of globalization, the ramifications of resource consumption, and other human population trends.
HONORS WORLD STUDIES 10                         02202  
Grade 10
This course is an introduction to the study of World History. As a student you will be studying events and ideas of the past. As a historian you will be judging and evaluating those events and ideas to see what lessons they offer for today. Units of study include prehistoric cultures, ancient civilizations, and African, Asian, European, and Indian cultures and civilizations. This course is intended for students seeking a greater depth of knowledge and understanding of World History. Students will be required to write analysis papers based upon evaluations of primary sources and their knowledge of cultures and historical time periods.
IB HL HISTORY OF THE AMERICAS YR 1                     025251
Year 1 of a 2 year course
Grades 11 
Prerequisite: Successful completion of Human Geography and World History
World Topics: IB History Route 2
Course focuses on the development of diverse people through conflict and foreign-domestic policies. Year 1 of 2 content focuses on Historiography, Causes, Practices, and Effects War   (World War I , II, Nicaraguan Revolution, and Falklands – Malvinas War), Peacekeeping and Peace Making 1918-1936, Development of Single-Party and Authoritarian States ( Argentina, Cuba, Italy, Germany, Egypt, Russia). Class focuses on development of critical reading, writing, research and listening skills through variety of means. In addition, daily reading (3-5 pages) and writing assigned throughout each unit, and student write a 5-7 page historical research paper on topic dealing with course theme.
IB HL HISTORY OF THE AMERICAS YR 2                                             025252
Year 2 of a 2 year course
Grades 12
Prerequisite: Successful completion of IB HL History of the Americas, Year 1
History of the Americas: IB History Route 2 Course is the second year of this two year course. Content focuses on regional study of the Americas social, political, economic, and cultural issues from 1790-2000 – including independence movements, development of modern nations (1865-1929), and emergence of the Americas in Global Affairs. Class continues to develop critical skills mentioned in year 1. Students research and write a 10-15 page historical paper on topic dealing with course theme. Students may sit for the IB HL exams in May of Year 2.

IB SL HISTORY: COMMUNISM IN CRISIS                Proposed Course #: TBD
Grades: 11 OR 12
Prerequisite:  Successful completion of Human Geography and World History
Communism in Crisis is a one-year college preparatory course designed to promote habits of thought in history (i.e. approaches to research, sources, etc.) and an in-depth understanding of the challenges facing the Communist powerhouses of China, the USSR, and East Germany in the last quarter of the 20th century.  Students will use these case studies to better understand the lasting effects on current world politics.  The course will also discuss the challenges in democratic states and the Cold War.  In order to achieve high marks on the IB SL History exam (students do NOT have to take the exam at the end of the year, but they will be prepared to do so), students should expect to move at a brisk pace and engage with the material outside of class.
IB SL HISTORY THE AMERICAS YR 2                          025242
Year 2 of 2 year course
Grades: 12
Prerequisite: Successful completion of IB SL History of the Americas, Year 1
This is the second year of a two-year college preparatory course designed to promote historical research, critical thinking skills and reflection on past and present issues on five historical themes that occurred in the Americas: Canada, The United States and Latin America. The Course will focus on three topics related to any complete study of history: 1) Causes, practices and effects of war, 2) Rise and rule of single-party states, and 3) The Cold War.  A holistic approach to history while centering on political, social, economic and cultural issues within each topic is emphasized. Instructor will choose from a list of units for in-depth analysis which could include:  Course goal is to develop a capacity in students to critically analyze past events and evaluate how these events have affected our present day, and could possibly affect the future.  Students will be analyze and interpret political, economic and sociological based presentations offering essays and oral presentations. Upon completion of this course students may sit for IB SL History exam in May.

TOPICS IN US HISTORY                                   02301
Grade 11
Pre-requisite: World Studies 10
“Topics in US History” is a course designed to engage students in a rigorous, relevant, and thematic journey through the human experience of time, place, and space. This course includes, but is not limited to: American Diversity, American Identity, Culture, Demographic Changes, Economic Transformations, Environment, Globalization, Politics and Citizenship, Reform, Religion. As students step into the role of a historian and practice the historical method, which demands high intellectual performance, they will be asked to greater understand and define the present through the lens of United States History. The course is structured around the newly adopted Minnesota Social Studies Standards as they are embedded under the themes in Advanced Placement History.

GOVERNMENT/ECONOMICS 12                       02421  
Grade 12
Prerequisite: Open to 12th grade students only
In Government, students will obtain an overview of the United States governmental process, with an understanding and awareness of national and international affairs. Students will develop a knowledge of the U.S. Constitution, the three branches of the federal government, and the process of how each branch works. Students will have an awareness of our individual rights and our individual role in the democratic process.
In Economics, students will gain a better understanding of economic behavior by studying the basics of supply and demand, product and factor markets, competition and monopoly, international trade, income distribution, and taxation. Students will be introduced to various methods and statistics used in economics and will learn to understand economic behavior.
PSYCHOLOGY                                                 02711
Semester/Elective credit only
Grades 11-12
Prerequisite: 11th and 12th grade students only
This is an introductory course to the study of Psychology. Emphasis is on the causes and effects of human behavior. Students should gain knowledge and skills which will give them greater understanding of themselves and others. Topics will include: what is psychology, psychological research methods, developmental psychology, theories of personality, psychological tests, stress and health, psychological disorders, and methods of therapy.