SSG601: US Government (2011-2012)
CURRICULUM PROGRAM: Social Studies
COURSE TITLE: American Government
CALENDAR YEAR: 2011-2012
GRADE LEVEL: 12
COURSE LENGTH: 18 weeks
Major Concepts/Content: The United States government course is a required one semester course designed to provide students with essential knowledge and skills related to the nation’s government and its historical development. Students in this course pursue a deep understanding of the institutions of American government. They analyze the history and interpretations of the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the current state of the legislative, executive, and judiciary branches of government. An emphasis is placed on analyzing the relationship between federal, state, and local governments, with particular attention paid to important historical documents. Students compare systems of government in the world (comparison with host nation’s government is encouraged as part of the program). These standards represent the culmination of civic efficacy as students prepare to vote, participate in community activities, and assume the responsibilities of citizenship.
Major Instructional Activities: Instructional activities will be provided relative to the content standards of the US Government, and use chronological and spatial thinking, historical research, and interpretation to demonstrate intellectual reasoning, reflection and research skills.
Major Evaluative Techniques: Evaluation will be comprised of assessments for/of learning in content standards knowledge, historical analysis, making historical connections and social studies research skills utilizing primary source documents.
Course Objectives: Upon completion of the Government course of study, students should be able to:
Explain the fundamental principles and moral values of American democracy as expressed in the U.S. Constitution and other essential documents of American democracy.
- Formulate and defend positions on the scope and limits of rights and obligations ad democratic citizens, the relationships among them, and how they are secured.
- Formulate and defend positions on what the fundamental values and principles of civil society are including the autonomous sphere of voluntary personal, social, and economic relations that are not part of government, their interdependence, and the meaning and importance of those values and principles for a free society.
- Compare and contrast the unique roles and responsibilities of the three branches of government established by the U.S. Constitution.
- Examine landmark U.S. Supreme Court interpretations of the Constitution and its amendments.
- Evaluate issues regarding campaigns for national, state, and local elective offices.
- Analyze and compare the powers and procedures of national, state, tribal, and local governments.
- Formulate and defend positions on the influence of the media on American political life.
- Analyze the origins, characteristics, and development of different political systems across time, with emphasis on the quest for political democracy, its advances, and its obstacles.
- Analyze the influence of the federal government on the American economy.
- Analyze current events, formulate questions and discuss the impact and implications on their daily lives and futures.