High School History Courses at Barnstable

Barnstable’s history courses are engaging with a focus on comprehension, analysis and interpretation, research skills, and chronological thinking.



Subject: History | Course: US History I

The year starts with Pre-Columbus America and ends with the Industrial Revolution in the late 1800’s. There is a heavy focus on Project Based Learning (PBL), as well as persuasive writing with a focus on critical thinking. There are many Data Based Questions (DBQs) throughout the year for students to hone their analytical skills and formulate constructive arguments through research.

Subject: History | Course: US History II

The year starts with 1890’s American Imperialism and ends with the fall of the USSR in the late 1900s. Students work independently and in groups on a variety of projects. Critical thinking and persuasive writing are a focus in this class. Data Based Questions (DBQs) are used throughout the year for students to enhance their analytical skills and form arguments through research.

Subject: History | Course: World History

The course explores world regions whose civilizations and conflicts have had a profound effect on our society. Students will investigate contributions of many types of people and the connections we have with those people. The course will help students identify historical trends and themes, explore historical movements and concepts and test theories. Students will refine their ability to read for comprehension and critical analysis; summarize, categorize and evaluate information; write clearly and with meaning; express facts and opinions orally; and use technology to present information.

Subject: History | Course: Economics

The course explores the historical significance of Economics with an emphasis on the economy in America. Students will be introduced to both micro and macroeconomics and will have the opportunity to track the current state of the economy. Students will achieve a greater understanding of economics ranging from the viewpoint of the individual consumer or small business owner to the global economy. The course will explore the law of supply and demand, forms of business, labor unions, government finances and influence on the economy, money and prices, inflation and deflation cycles.

Subject: History | Course: American Government & Law

The course explores the fundamental principles and basic structure of the American system of government. We look at areas of the government that have remained constant over time and characteristics of government that have changed. Students will experience the excitement of our government through a variety of resources as they experience and interact with people and events that have shaped our countries politics. Students will also be introduced to our system of law, our court system, landmark Supreme Court cases, and advocacy while being encouraged to be an active participating citizen.

Subject: History | Course: Contemporary Issues

This is a senior level course designed to empower students to take a deeper dive into the issues in our country and around the world today. This class is project based & students will be required to conduct independent research as well as create their own policy proposals for each unit. Students will examine issues like: Gun Control & the Second Amendment, Woman’s rights, Addiction & Legalization, Homelessness in the US & the world, historical context for conflict in the middle east- Iran, Afghanistan, Iraq & modern ME policy, Immigration policy, and US prison systems. Students also debate the nuances in policy and search for long term solutions that can be applied.

Subject: History | Course: AP US History

In AP United States History, students study the history of the United States and its origins, from 1491 to the present day. The curriculum meets the standards set by the College Board, including information across such thematic learning objectives as “American and National Identity,” “Work, Exchange, and Technology,” and “Geography and the Environment.” The course aims in particular to hone students’ abilities to read, analyze, contextualize, and compare primary and secondary source documents from a variety of eras and origins. Classes often follow a lecture format, while a great deal of homework is in the form of papers and readings.

Subject: History | Course: AP US Government & Politics

The AP United States History and Government class sets out to help students understand the formal structures and institutions of the American political system. In addition to studying such structural concepts as federalism and the system of checks and balances, students also learn about rights and citizenship (including the limits and contours of the rights found in the Bill of Rights as defined by the United States Supreme Court) and about different theories of public participation. Although the curriculum explicitly includes applications of the roles of structures in historical and current events, current events are not themselves a part of the College Board’s curriculum. Classes may include short lectures, but are more commonly discussions of texts and their interpretations.