Class Syllabus

                                 Grade 7 Social Studies               

Mr. Sullivan

Course Overview

The primary goal of this course is to understand how the past impacts the present, and the future. To this end, we will always connect our topics to today.  With this knowledge, you will be equipped with the tools to be an active citizen in a culturally diverse society. This course will address the following essential questions: What does it mean to be an American? How does environment impact culture? What is perspective, and how does it shape the way we view the world around us? What motivates people to explore? Who decides who has power, and how much power should they have? What is the most effective way to mobilize, communicate and execute strategies for more liberties/power? Is war necessary, if so when?    


Classroom Expectations

RespectTreat others as you would want to be treated. Social Studies 7 will be an embracing, caring, and critically thinking environment; this means that all opinions and view-points are welcomed!  


EffortDo your best. If you are trying your hardest, and completing assignments, you will grow as a student. You will embrace setbacks, I will help to guide you through these failures, provide detailed feedback and you will learn from your mistakes.


AccountabilityYou will take ownership of your work. I will be here to guide you in the classroom, however, it is your responsibility to improve on your own, outside of the classroom, to ensure your personal growth throughout the year. This also means that you will come to class on time and prepared.  






Unit Assessments/Main Ideas/Connections to Today


Native Americans

Working as a group, you will be asked to research a specific Native American group and you will determine how environment impacts culture. Does environment still impact our culture today?  


Colonial Developments

You will be asked to discover a specific technological invention that allowed/motivated European exploration. Which of these inventions do we still use today?


American Independence

You will be asked to examine the foundational ideas behind the Declaration of Independence and draw a connection to life today in America.


Historical Development of the Constitution

You will be asked to debate with classmates: should the United States have a strong, or weak, central government? Are we still having this debate today? 


The Constitution in Practice

Working as a group, you will be assigned a specific branch of government and you will research the role and powers of your branch. How does the Bill of Rights impact you today?


Westward Expansion

You will be asked to research the ideas behind Manifest Destiny and how this ideology positively/negatively impacted different groups in America. Are there places today that we haven’t yet explored?


Reform Movements

You will take the role of an abolitionist and research the ways this movement organized and resisted slavery. Are there social groups today that are mobilizing for greater civil liberties?


A Nation Divided

You, and a classmate, will be asked to research primary sources from the Civil War and create a museum that details personal stories of those involved in the war. Are there Civil Wars occurring in our world today?



I believe that “practice makes perfect,” so you should expect homework most nights. Homework will provide an opportunity to reinforce a topic we learned in class, or allow you to have a base of understanding for the next class. I will provide a “Work of the Week” document at the beginning of each week so that you can know what to expect for the upcoming week and plan accordingly. 



Student grades will be comprised on a total points system and will include: tests/quizzes, projects, participation and homework. Please check the portal for the most up-to-date grades.


How Parents/Guardians Can Help

This will be a partnership, or a relationship, ensuring the growth of your son/daughter. As a parent please make sure you are checking the “Work of the Week” documents so you understand what is being asked of your son/daughter. Additionally, please encourage your son/daughter to attend extra help (listed below).


Extra Help

*Monday, Wednesday and Thursday mornings (7:15am)

*Wednesday afterschool

*Additional times by appointment


Contact Information

My email is:


“It is by a thorough knowledge of the whole subject that [people] are enabled to judge correctly of the past and to give a proper direction to the future.”

-James Monroe




By signing below, I acknowledge that I have read and understand the information in this document.

Student’s Name: ________________________

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