AMERICAN GOVERNMENT SYLLABUS – FALL 2008 Course: American Government Instructor: Mrs. Conrad Phone: (407) 905-3000 ext. 4677 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website: http://teacher.ocps.net/iva.conrad Text: United States Government: Democracy In Action, Glencoe (2006) Course Description: In this American Government court you will study the development of our system of government from the events leading to the creation of our Constitution through the current operations of the executive, legislative and executive branches. You will study the functions of all branches and organizations of government. You will discover how our government works and how you fit into that system. Major concepts/content: American Government provides students with interdisciplinary knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary to meet responsibilities as citizens of their community, state, and nation and prepares them to understand the working of the Democratic Process with an understanding of the Federal Government. Required Materials: You are expected to bring your textbook, your interactive student notebook (120 page notebook), and pen/pencil with you to class every day. Coming unprepared for class informs me that you are not ready to participate in the activities. Interactive Notebook: The Interactive Student Notebook (“ISN”) will be an integral part of this course. Details relating to the ISN will be forthcoming. State Grading Scale Grading: Our school and district philosophy require that we grade on this scale: A = 90 – 100 B = 80 – 89 C = 70 – 79 D = 60 – 69 F = 59 or below Mastery = The student has an overall understanding of the subject matter and can apply concepts and skills of the subject matter to other areas. Proficiency = The student has a good understanding of the subject matter and can apply concepts and skills of the subject matter to areas within the subject matter Competency = The student has a basic understanding of the subject matter and the concepts and skills used. Grades can be checked at www.k12planet.com. TOPICS COVERED: Foundations of the American political system o Political Theory o Historical British Documents The United States Constitution o Declaration of Independence o Articles of Confederation o The Constitution and Federalism Political Behavior o Political Ideologies and Political Parties o Elections and Voting o Public Opinion, the Media, and Interest Groups Institutions and Public Policy o Legislative Branch – Congress o Executive Branch – the Presidency The Bureaucracy Public Policy – Domestic and Foreign o Judicial Branch – the Courts o Civil Rights and Civil Liberties Economics Includes: FCAT READING: Social studies will continue to expose students to informational text, vital to the FCAT. The new texts also come with additional FCAT preparation resources. REFERENCE/RESEARCH: The new texts emphasize DBQ skills (document-based questions) which require students to compare various primary sources to draw conclusions. This will offer more practice in the reference/research area of FCAT that is a weakness for our students. READING STRATEGIES: Resources are provided to support teachers with reading strategies. These offer step by step guides to before, during, and after reading. They emphasize graphic organizers, main idea, vocabulary building, etc. SUNSHINE STATE STANDARDS: The Global Studies texts have been correlated to the Sunshine State Standards making lesson-planning easier and more effective FCAT MATH: Social studies texts are excellent tools for analyzing data in graphs, charts, etc. assisting the math curriculum. CURRENT EVENTS: this class will support the reading and discussion of current events. Current Events can support the higher levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy – Students can analyze current events, apply their knowledge of civics, and evaluate their position on current events. NOTE: This Syllabus is subject to revision as needed throughout the school year. Revised copies will be provided when necessary.
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