US History Homepage

Welcome to the US History Homepage.

Today's Website(s):

Practice Final Exam

Take the current quiz or survey:

Most Current Quizzes:

See above

Most Current Survey:

None for now

Upcoming Quizzes:

Old Quizzes:

Don't be like Barney Fife. Know it!

Course Objectives:

8th grade students will be expected to be proficient in Civics, Economics and US History. Specifically, they will be working on American government, economic decision-making and US history from the Revolution to the post-Civil War Reconstruction period.

Class Expectations:

All school rules apply, please also see the class expectations sheet below (image and PDF) for more detailed class information.

Class Syllabus and Essential Learning Goals

Ongoing: Social Studies Skills and Cross-Content Learning Goals at Grant (Skills ELGs)

Learning Goal: (Skill ELG I: Cooperative Learning): Demonstrate working cooperatively in groups.

Learning Goal: (Skill ELG II: Social Studies Resources): Identify the differences between primary and secondary sources and use each appropriately for analysis.

Learning Goal: (Skill ELG III: Technology): Use digital tools safely and responsibly to demonstrate content knowledge and for research, analysis and synthesis of content related material.

Learning Goal: (Skill ELG IV: Writing): Write informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas, concepts, and information through the selection, organization, and analysis of relevant content. (CCSS W.8.2)

Learning Goal: (Skill ELG V: Reading): Cite the textual evidence that most strongly supports an analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text. (CCSS RI.8.1)

Learning Goal: (Skill ELG VI: Reading): Determine central idea of a text and analyze its development over the course of the text, including its relationship to supporting ideas; provide an objective summary of the text. (CCSSRl.8.2)

Learning Goal: (Skill ELG VII: Speaking and Listening): Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grade 8 topics, texts, and issues, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly. (CCSS SL.8.1)

Content Specific ELGs:

Unit 1: John Locke: Theories on Government (Civics)
Learning Goal (ELG1): Explain how life in the state of nature leads us to a social contract and gives government its purpose (Story Book/Fiction Writing).

Unit 2: Elements of Good Government (Civics)
Learning Goal (ELG2): Identify and give examples of common good, civic virtue and limitations on the power of government (Research Paper/Photo Captioning/Patriot's Pen).
Learning Goal (ELG3) Describe the purpose of the Declaration of Independence (Letter Writing Activity).

Unit 3: The US Constitution (Civics)
Learning Goal (ELG4): Use the Preamble to explain the six goals of government (Translation Paragraph with Images).
Learning Goal (ELG5): Describe the three branches of US government and how they check and balance the power of each other (Graphic Organizer).
Learning Goal (ELG6): Identify and Describe the Civil Liberties and Rights that are protected by the Bill of Rights (Revealer Project).
Learning Goal (ELG7): Define the federal system as seen in the United States (Summary Paragraph).

Unit 4: Responsibilities of a Citizen (Civics)
Learning Goal (ELG8): Describe how citizens responsibly participate in government (Quiz with "T" chart).

Major Assessment (Final Civics Test)

Unit 5: Economic Decision Making (Economics)
Learning Goal (ELG9): Explain how we make decisions about scarce resources by using an Economic Decision Making Grid (Graphic Organizer of EDMG Chart).

Major Assessment (Final Economics Test)

Unit 6: Foreign Policy in a New Nation (US History)
Learning Goal (ELG10): Identify how other nations interfered with the early US foreign policies of isolationism and neutrality (Checkmark Chart).
Learning Goal (ELG11): Explain how the Monroe Doctrine allowed the United States to return to a policy of isolationism (Essay).

Unit 7: Immigration (US History)
Learning Goal (ELG12): Analyze contributions of different immigrant groups in the US (Venn Poster).

Instructional Task 1 (District Data Collection window Nov 7-18)

Unit 8: Rise of Nationalism (US History)
Learning Goal (ELG13): Identify symbols of National Unity in the early 1800's (Poster).
Learning Goal (ELG14): Identify and describe characteristics of three US cultural regions in the early 1800's (Mapping).

Unit 9: Westward Expansion (US History)
Learning Goal (ELG15): Identify major land areas gained by the US between 1803 and 1853 (Timeline).
Learning Goal (ELG16): Explain the concept of Manifest Destiny (Summary Paragraph).

Unit 10: Era of Reform (US History)
Learning Goal (ELG 17): Describe how and why individuals are motivated to participate in society to enact reform (Speech).

Instructional Task 2 (District Data Collection window February 2-17)

Unit 11: Slavery (US History)
Learning Goal (ELG18): Describe four elements of slavery (Story Quilt).

Unit 12: Unraveling Nation and Antebellum US (US History)
Learning Goal (ELG19): Identify geographic, economic and social differences between the North and South prior to the civil war (Venn Diagram or Three-Column Notes)
Learning Goal (ELG20): Describe issues that divided the US prior to the Civil War (Summary Paragraph).

Unit 13: Civil War (US History)
Learning Goal (ELG21): Describe causes of the Civil War and explain what compromises were made in its resolution (Timeline/Newspaper Article)

Unit 14: Reconstruction (US History)
Learning Goal (ELG22): Describe the long-reaching impacts of Reconstructions "unfinished revolution" (Narrative/Artifacts).

Major Assessment (Final US History Exam)

Major Assessment (Final Content Exam)

Additional Curriculum Information:
DPS 8th Grade: Year-at-a-Glance

For More Standards-Based information:

Former Colorado State Standards:

New Colorado State Academic Standards:
For Social Studies

Common Core State Standards:

Learn more about us debt.

Patriot's Pen 2011-12:

For rules and questions about the competition, see the following link:
Registration Form

Patriot's Pen Info:
1) Topic: "Are You Proud of Your Country?"
2) Essay Length: 300-400 typewritten words
3) Language: Must be written in English and be the student's own original work
4) Entry: Limited to Students in the US in the grades of 6th. 7th or 8th.
5) All other information, see the official Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) website at:

Past Winners:Congratulations to 2011 winners: Andre, Tristan and Chris for won at the local VFW competition. Also, congratulations to Chris and Andre for taking first and second at the district Patriot's Pen competition. 2011 Submissions went in November 1, 2010. This year we had 85 essays submitted, and 23 were advanced for the local competition. Congratulations to all students that wrote for the competition!
Congratulations to 2010 winner: Katie won 1st at the local VFW competition, district competition and state competition. She placed 53rd overall in the nation.
Congratulations to 2009 winner: Ryan took 3rd in the local VFW competition.
Congratulations to 2008 winner: Michael took 2nd in the local VFW competition.

National History Day:

This Year's Theme (2012): Revolution, Reaction, Reform in History.