San Francisco High School of the Arts

Middle School History Department

The middle school history program is made up of two years of World History and two years of US history. Students will learn to interpret the correlation and causation of events; analyze the impact of a historical event on a region’s – or the world’s – economy, politics, society and technology; think and write critically about historical events; and explain how they have affected the modern world.

Course Description

  • Ancient World History
  • U.S. History
  • Medieval History

This course focuses on the political, social, and cultural development of civilizations of the Ancient World, largely from the B.C.E. and early C.E. periods. Students will learn about major historical figures and events from ancient China, India, Egypt, and other world cultures, by analyzing their effect on history from multiple perspectives. By the end of the year, they will be able to identify and perform close-text reading from a variety of primary and secondary sources; identify, corroborate, and contextualize claims and arguments; and construct their own informational and persuasive texts. They will also enhance their public speaking skills through oral and multimedia presentations.

This course explores the origins and development of America, examining major figures and events from 1492 to 1919. Building upon skills learned in the previous years, students will make connections between historical events to gain a better understanding of how the past has shaped the present; write expository and analytical works, demonstrating critical thinking, create projects throughout the year including multimedia presentations, mind maps, skits, and traditional storytelling of American folktales; and conduct journalistic interviews with community members and eyewitnesses to historical events and publish their interviews on various forms of news media.

This course examines major historical events from the fall of the Western Roman Empire to the early Modern Era. Building upon skills learned in the previous year, students will learn how civilizations influenced and shaped each other through the exchange of ideas, technology, and commodities; enhance their critical thinking skills through analysis of primary and secondary sources; and become aware of the events that shaped and continue to affect our modern lives. They will complete essays on selected historical topics, demonstrating in-depth understanding of the topic content as well as the ability to relate the topic to greater historical processes and themes.

Middle School Academics

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