In eighth grade, students engage in the study of events, documents, movements, and people emphasizing 18th/19th century America with a focus on inquiry into the development of the United States as a nation. The study of U.S. history in the 18th and 19th centuries requires that students generate and research compelling questions such as:
- How do Americans define freedom and equality and how have American conceptions of freedom and equality changed over the course of U.S. history for members of various racial, ethnic, religious, and gender minority groups?
- Is America a land of political, economic, and social opportunity?
- What was the significance of Connecticut’s contribution to America’s story?
- Is the United states a “just” society and how has the concept of justice evolved over time?
- Is there an American national identity; what does it mean to be an American?
- What should be the current role of the United States in world affairs?
In what way did the abolition of slavery indicate progress, or decline, for the lives of African Americans?
Can a former slave prosper in a colony where slavery is legal?
Would there have been a thriving iron industry in Connecticut without the geological and geographical advantages of the northwest corner?
How did Sharon, Connecticut based manufacturers A.A. Hotchkiss and Sons contribute to major innovations in U.S. history?
What factors led to the 17th-century witchcraft trials in Connecticut?
How does an entire society participate in war?
What role did the Amistad incident play in the abolitionist movement in the United States?