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AP College Board Approved Syllabus
Mr. Temple's US History

One of the most important goals of this course is to prepare students for the Advanced Placement Examination in United States History which is administered by the College Board every spring. The course is intended to be the equivalent to a college freshman course that demands solid reading and writing skills, along with the ability and willingness to devote considerable time for homework and study. Students who do well on this test usually are awarded actual credit or advanced standing when they enroll in a college or university. This year the AP Exam date is scheduled for Friday, May 9, 2008 at 8:00 am. For the most current information on this test and all tests administered by the College Board go to

Course Objectives:

ˇ Master a broad body of historical knowledge

ˇ Demonstrate an understanding of historical chronology

ˇ Use historical data to support and argument or position

ˇ Differentiate between historiographical schools of thought

ˇ Interpret and apply data from original documents, including cartoons, graphs, letters, etc.

ˇ Effectively use analytical skills of evaluation, cause and effect, compare and contrast.

ˇ Work effectively with others to produce products and solve problems

ˇ Prepare for and successfully pas the AP U.S. History Exam.

An equally important goal of the class is to introduce students to the methods used in the study of history. The study of history concerns events and ideas occurring in the past that can be useful in understanding the world in which we live today. The meaning of most of these events and ideas is still open to interpretation. This course does not pretend to unveil the one true explanation of all historical events. It provides instead an opportunity to examine evidence concerning the events and ideas of the past, consider explanations that have occurred to others, and to construct independent conclusions of our own. Hopefully, such a situation will enlighten and excite students as they discover that the study of the past is a tool to be used to predict possible outcomes in the future. A short research paper linking American literature and history is required.

TEXTBOOK: America: Past and Present 8th Edition by Robert A. Divine. 2007

Websites: , , , etc.

Document Based Questions (DBQ’s): Primarily from AP* Instructor’s Resource Manual to accompany American Past and Present. By Len Rabinowitz.

Primary Source books: The American Journey Document Set Volumes I and II. by Hartmann, Benedict, Hogan, Grimsley: Prentice Hall June 1998.

Required: A notebook or binder is needed to keep track of notes, outlines, and assignments.

Students Must Read, Review, Analyze and Discuss: An approved American literature book linking to American history. You also must write a three-page review of the book. Some suggestions are below.

Suggested Outside Readings :

Bailey, T., and Kennedy, D., The American Spirit, 9thEdition Upton, Sinclair The Jungle Kennedy, John F. Profiles in Courage King, Martin Luther A Letter From a Birmingham Jail Steinbeck, John The Grapes of Wrath Boyer, Paul The Enduring Vision Zinn, Howard A People’s History of the United States

Other books will be listed on the board.

The Course Purpose: First and foremost, students will learn U.S. history and government. The course is also intended to prepare students to take the AP U.S. History Exam and to serve as the first year of the two-year IB History of the Americas .

THE COURSE: AP United States History is an accelerated introduction to American history and culture. The reading and writing load is significantly heavier than regular sections of the same course, and our agenda assumes that AP students are highly motivated and possess sophisticated classroom skills. Indeed, success in this class will depend in large measure on a student’s ability to be an analytical reader and have written and verbal communication skills. In this course knowing the facts is important, but only one part of a process which also demands interpretation and synthesis of large and in depth data. Students can sometimes have difficulty with the amount of time required in an AP class, but this is expected for college prep students enrolled in a weighted class that requires the passage of the AP Exam for college credit.

Note: Friday’s are usually used for evaluating student progress, via in-class essay and multiple choice tests, or some type of presentation. The emphasis will be on analytical, reading, and writing skills. Writing with a thesis and using evidence to construct logical and reasonable arguments are essential for those hoping to excel. Students should expect to seek help from instructor frequently if the demands seem to be too much, especially in the early going. I am available before school begins from 7:30-8:00 and after school from 2:30-2:45 Make-up tests and essays are to be taken at lunch or before school within a week following the missed assignment. No tests or make-up assignments are expected from unexcused absences or tardiness.

*Week 18: Semester Exam

Week 29: Final Project-(preparing for this exam will help prepare students for the AP Exam)

Course Outline: Each unit will require several chapters to be read, as well as 2 or more other sources to provide specific evidence that students are given the opportunity to analyze evidence and interpretations in historical scholarship and examine and analyze a wide variety of primary resource materials.



What will be analyzed and interpreted?

Book chapters: America : Past and Present



Go over Syllabus expectations, pass out books,

Introduction to the course.

ˇ Chart differentiating colonies politically, socially, and economically.

ˇ DBQ: New England v. Chesapeake

What was colonial life like?

Read excerpts from: Bryd, William The Secret Diary of William Bryd of Westover 1709-1712 (Louis Wright and Marion Tinling, eds) (1941).

Watch video documentaries from:

1-New World Encounters

2-New World Experiments: England ’s 17thCentury Colonies

3-Putting Down Roots: Opportunity and Oppression in Colonial Society

4-Experience of Empire: 18th Century America

Unit 1: Colonial History

ˇ Emergence of American cultural traits and factors that contribute to them.

ˇ Emerging regional patterns and how they evolved.

ˇ Motives and methods of colonization

ˇ Push-Pull bringing colonists

ˇ Cultural difference between Americans and Europeans.


5-The American Revolution

FRQ: Mercantilism-cost/benefit to GB

ˇ GB policy changes post 1763

ˇ Emerging colonial cooperation and decision for independence

ˇ Military victory and terms of the Treaty of Paris.

DBQ on British Taxes on colonists

ˇ Multiple Choice Exam

DBQ-Impact of the American Revolution on Women.

ˇ Free Response-Mercantilism

What did the British press have to say about the colonies? What were the advantages and disadvantages of both sides?

Unit 2: Independence

ˇ Colonists reevaluate their relationship with GB and with each other.

ˇ The American Revolution as a conservative or a radical movement.

ˇ The American Revolution’s place in world developments of the time.


6-The Republican Experiment

ˇ Chart to differentiate Articles of Confederation, Virginian and NJ plan, and the US Constitution

ˇ Study and discuss the difference between a republic and a democracy.

ˇ Analyze Federalist Papers pertaining necessitating a republic.

Unit 3: Post Independence and the Critical Period

ˇ Impact of colonial experience on post-independence government

ˇ Development of the constitution and bill of rights.

ˇ Differentiate political parties

ˇ Sectionalism and specialization

ˇ Nation v state rights

ˇ Success/Failure/compromise of Articles of Confederation.

ˇ Hamilton v Jefferson

ˇ British-French conflict and impact on American politics-trade, diplomacy, and Alien and Sedition Acts.


7-Democracy and Dissent: The Violence of Party Politics


8-Republican Ascendancy, The Jeffersonian Vision

FRQ: Marshal Court Essay Question.

ˇ Debate whether Jefferson , based on party platform of Democrats and Republicans, would be more likely a republican or democrat.

ˇ Chart the positive and negative attributes of Jefferson ’s presidency.

Differentiating Jeffersonian and Jefferson:

Letter, Thomas Jefferson to Benjamin Banneker expressing his belief that blacks possess talents equal to those of "other colours of men," 30 August 1791.-PBS

Unit 4: Jefferson ’s Administration/Growth of Nationalism

ˇ Peaceful transfer of power from one party to another.

ˇ Change in party positions

ˇ National growth and the growth of nationalism.

ˇ Jefferson: changes in party positions, Louisiana Purchase , diplomatic problems.

ˇ War of 1812-Era of Good Feelings, rise of Nationalism, and diplomatic achievements.

ˇ Marshal Ct rulings and precedents.

ˇ Monroe Doctrine.


9-Nation building and Nationalism


10-The Triumph of Democracy (for Whites)

ˇ Discuss if current Mexicans have the right to say America is really Mexican land.

ˇ Essay-Was Expansion a necessary evil?

FRQ: Differentiate Whigs and Democrats (page 299)

ˇ Who went to the Whig Party?

ˇ Where would Whigs and Democrats align with current Political Parties? The true issue, and the duty of the Whigs.: An address before the citizens of Cambridge , October 1, 1856./ By Joel Parker.


Extract from Andrew Jackson's Seventh Annual Message to Congress

December 7, 1835

Unit 5: Age of Jackson

ˇ Emergence of the second American party system

ˇ Common man

ˇ Expansion: geog/econ

ˇ Reform movements and the American character

ˇ Jackson-spoils system, nullification, bank, Indian removal.

ˇ Manifest Destiny, War with Mexico .

ˇ Immigration-social, political, reform.


11-Slaves and Masters

FRQ: Who had it worse: Indians or Slaves? Explain specifically.

ˇ Who emerged as abolitionist leaders?

ˇ What kept abolitionist from persuading Southerners to end slavery?

Read Lincoln ’s response to Horace Greely and decide: Was Lincoln a racist? Would he be considered a racist by current standards?

The American Journey Document Set

Title: Negro slavery Unjustifiable: A discourse / by the late Rev. Alexander McLeod, 1802.

Racist Democrat poster from

TITLE: The constitutional amendment!CALL NUMBER: Broadside Collection, portfolio 159, no. 11A c-Rare Bk Coll

More sectionalism…

Unit 6: Slavery and Sectionalism

ˇ slavery –paternalistic v. reality

ˇ sectionalism-socioeconomics

ˇ expansion-disputes

ˇ Missouri, Kansas-Nebraska, Bleeding Kansas

ˇ Dred Scott

ˇ Lincoln-Douglas Debates

ˇ John Brown

ˇ Election of 1860


12-The Pursuit of Perfection








17-Explotation by the West



* DBQ-laissez-faire violations in the 1800’s.

* Analyze political cartoons.

* Period appropriate advertisements

Tycoons: Heroes or Villans?

Unit 8: Rise of Business

ˇ Political alignment and corruption in the Gilded Age

ˇ Political corruption and reform

ˇ Tycoons, unions, and changing conditions on workplaces.

ˇ Government role in economy.

ˇ Impacts of Industrialization-social, political, economic.




20-Political Realignments

ˇ Read excerpts from The Jungle

ˇ Compare The Progressive platform to Current Democratic Platform.

* DBQ-farm problems

* Discuss how the reforms correlate to current times and decide what did not go far enough or went too far.

What does the letter to Teddy from Upton Sinclair allude about Teddy?

What is the point being made of the William Jennings Bryan Cartoon?

Unit 9: Populists and Progressives

ˇ Inflation/Deflation-government role

ˇ Third party role

ˇ Immigration and urbanization

ˇ Patrician reformers

ˇ Jefferson and Hamilton influence on Bryan and Wilson

ˇ Agrarian Revolt: post war issues, organizing, and election 1896.

ˇ Immigration and other social developments.

ˇ Middle class reformers

ˇ Muckrakers, women’s issues, corruption, business and labor

ˇ Presidents’ responses to Progressive Movement.


21-Toward Empire

FRQ: Was WWI inevitable?

ˇ Limits to speech-Court cases

ˇ Study Espionage and Sedition Acts

ˇ Analyze Versailles Treaty

ˇ Discuss Senate Rejecting Wilson’s League of Nations .

ˇ Create Political Cartoon responding to various topics from imperialism to WWI.

Women becoming more assertive?

Wilson v. Senate: Who was right?

Unit 10: Imperialism and WWI

ˇ Changing role for America

ˇ WWI motivation

ˇ Post-war agreements

ˇ President and congressional differ in policy and role

ˇ Spanish-American War-justification, mobilization, treaty, and consequences.

ˇ T. Roosevelt’s Big Stick- Open Door , Panama , Nobel Prize

ˇ Taft’s Dollar diplomacy

ˇ Wilson Missionary Diplomacy

ˇ Impacts of society during War-women, minorities, Germans, protestors, business and labor.


22-Progressive Era

23-Progressive leadership






ˇ Compare Republican platform from 1920’s to present.

ˇ What is New Democrat Coalition?

ˇ Compare New Deal Democrats to current democrats.

ˇ Read Coughlin, Long, and Townsend alternative to New Deal.

ˇ Chart by group effects of Great Depression

ˇ What was the Dust Bowl and how did this impact demographic shift?

ˇ Decide if FDR was successful and why FDR was so powerful.

FRQ: Did FDR abuse his power?

ˇ Did FDR’s New Deal programs have positive or negative lasting effects?

Create a DBQ-issue or development in the 1920’s or 1930’s.

Comparing/contrasting Nativism: Post Civil War and WWI:

Unit 11: 1920’s-1930’s

ˇ Post WWI compared to post-Civil War nativism, laissez-faire, labor government, farmers, attitudes to reform.

ˇ US pursuit of advantages without responsibilities.

ˇ Administration policy: nullification by administration.

ˇ Cultural conflicts: native v. foreign, rural v. urban.

ˇ Revolution with manners and morals.

ˇ Role of government change from 1920’s-1930’s.

ˇ Political realignment

ˇ Human suffering and response to Great Depression.

ˇ Recession and agricultural problems.

ˇ Intolerance: KKK, immigration, Sacco and Vanzetti.

ˇ Prohibition, Organized Crime, Jazz, Youth, Literature of Disillusionment, credit, ads

ˇ Differentiated approaches: FDR, Harding, Coolidge, Hoover .

ˇ Hoover v. Roosevelt approaches to Depression


26-FDR and New Deal


27-1921-1945 Isolationism to WWII

ˇ Compare Atlantic Charter to 14 Points.

ˇ Compare/Contrast WWI and WWII with respect to treatment of citizens and constitutional rights.

ˇ What lessons were learned from WWI to WWII?

FRQ: What current policies in American politics are reflected from WWII?

ˇ How are Truman’s Policy of Containment and Bush’s ideology of spreading democracy similar and different?

The Atomic Bomb Debate:

Containment-Mr. X


Unit 12: WWII and the Cold War

ˇ Wilson v. Roosevelt as neutrals, wartime leaders, Allied partners, post-war planners

ˇ New Role for US

ˇ Home Front during WWI and WWII

ˇ US response to Aggression

ˇ Military Strategy

ˇ Atomic Bomb debate

ˇ Diplomacy

ˇ United Nations

ˇ Containment-Truman Doctrine, Marshall Plan, NATO, Korea , dividing Germany .


28-Cold War



ˇ Debate whether Great Society Programs reached their stated goals.

ˇ Define current day “Reagan Republicans”

ˇ How did Johnson affect the credibility of future presidents or governments?

ˇ Find two past Democrat presidents that are most similar in perspectives with a current presidential nominee for president that is a Republican.

ˇ Find two past Republican presidents that are most similar in perspectives with a current presidential nominee for president that is a Democrat.

ˇ Defend who had the most beneficial programs as the president and explain why these programs are beneficial.

ˇ Compare and Contrast The Vietnam War with the War in Iraq .

Johson’s Great Society Speech:

Great Society Intentions and Statistics

Unit 13: Post War Domestic Issues

ˇ Continued impact of New Deal and government’s role.

ˇ Civil rights

ˇ Checks and balances

ˇ Truman-Fair Deal, GI Bill, 22nd amendment, Loyalty Program, 1948 election.

ˇ Eisenhower-McCarthyism, Modern Republicanism, Highways, Brown v. BOE, Warren Court .

ˇ Kennedy and Johnson-Civil rights, Poverty-Great Society

ˇ Civil Rights Leaders philosophies, programs, and effectiveness.

ˇ Vietnam Syndrome

ˇ Interrelationship between foreign policy and economic stability

ˇ Liberation v. Containment

ˇ Asia Policies-Korea and SE Asia

ˇ Geneva accords

ˇ Dealing with Russia

ˇ Bay of Pigs and Cuban Missile Crisis

ˇ Peace and aid

ˇ Johnson-Vietnam War, credibility

ˇ Nixon/Ford-Vietnamization, Doctrine , China Card, Détente

ˇ Carter-human rights, Camp David, Salt II, Afghanistan , Olympic boycott, Iran Hostage

ˇ Reagan-Evil Empire, SDI, Cold War






32-Road to 21st Century (Bush to Bush)

Various Activities will be given in order to help students make meaning out of the material: Skits, Poetry, Book Review Presentations, Chart making, quiz making, interactive games, etc. After each unit there will be a test that includes multiple choice, short essay, extended essay, and DBQ’s.

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