What do the American values of democracy, human rights, and rational argument have in common? Our seventh graders know. These ideological pillars of American society have their roots in Western Civilization. Your child will trace the trajectory of European history—including ancient Greece, the Roman Empire, the Middle Ages, the Renaissance, the Age of Enlightenment, and the Age of Discovery—in this highly experiential seventh-grade social studies class.
Students will collaborate to recreate a scene from ancient Rome: what it looked like, how people dressed, what they ate, and how they lived. Your child will contribute to a meal typical of ancient times and share it with her peers. An essential theme of the course is how ancient civilizations impact the world we live in today. Students choose and research topics of interest, then share the results creatively to their peers. For example, presentations about the lasting legacy of the Roman Empire might cover Religion, Fashion, Food and Dining, Medicine, Language, Entertainment, or Architecture and Engineering. Your child will even see the connection between history, English literature, and the arts as he enacts a scene from Julius Caesar with coaching from an actor at the Alley Theater. Then, in a historical non sequitur, seventh-grade social studies concludes with a six-week intensive study of Texas history.