We will be using these Five Themes throughout the second semester to help us better understand the complex issues we will be studying.
Theme 1: The Peopling of the United States
Focus Question: How did the United States become a multiracial/multicultural society?
What is an American?
What factors contributed to ethnic and racial diversity within the United States?
How have Americans responded to the challenges of living in a diverse society?
How has cultural diversity contributed to the development of the United States economy?
Theme 2: Technology, Environment, and the Economy of the United States
Focus Question: How did the United States evolve economically?
How has the availability of natural resources impacted American economic thought?
How important have economic considerations been in the development of American political life?
What has been the relationship between a capitalist economic system and a democratic political
system in the American system?
To what extent have the emphases on equality and success been mutually achievable?
Theme 3: The United States and the World
Focus Question: How have relations with foreign nations shaped the history of the United States?
To what extent has American involvement in the world reflected domestic concerns?
What tensions have emerged due to economic and political influences in American foreign policy?
How and why have American wars resulted from desire or need?
To what degree has American foreign policy been determined by national ideals/
Theme 4: An Evolving Democracy
Focus Question: How has the government of the United States changed?
How have particular understandings of human nature affected American democratic development?
How has the tension between community and individual been addressed over time?
To what extent have the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution remained relevant?
Why and in what manner has the relationship between the individual and the government changed
To what degree has the American political system evolved toward fulfillment of the principles
embodied in the nation's founding documents?
Theme 5: Social Change
Focus Question: How did individuals or groups initiate change in American life?
Why have some groups needed to fight for their rights?
What methods have been used to achieve social change?
In what ways have the goals of different groups been related?
To what extent have individual and group demands affected American politics and traditions?