Pre-AP U.S. History - Mr. Smithey

United States History is an eighth grade course designed for students to develop analytical thinking, reading, listening, and writing skills that contribute to the appreciation,diversity, and complexity of the history of the United States of America on a national and international level. United States history offers students an overview of the history of the development and continuing evolution of our country. The major emphasis is on the study of significant people, events, and issues from the earliest times to the present. Traditional historical points of reference in American history are identified as Revolution, Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, the Civil War, Reconstruction, and much more.

Description of Pre-AP Component

The Pre-AP element of our classroom is highly important. Pre-AP does not designate that a child has been tested and proven to be more intelligent than other children, although in a Pre-AP setting this can often be the case. Pre-AP implies that the child has voluntarily chosen to be placed in a course that is reflective of the future skills necessary to pass a high school AP test. In keeping with the nature of the high school AP exams, my course will place great emphasis upon reading and writing. Great emphasis is placed on students being coachable, and working through the frustration that comes with learning new skills. In my classroom we will work from bell to bell.


Learning is not a spectator sport. Take part in class discussions. Ask questions, and express your interpretations of history. Not only will this make class more interesting, but it will allow me to tailor my teaching to your needs. Students will be assigned homework and encouraged to participate in individual and cooperative assignments. Nine weeks grades will be based on....

Reading Assessment ........................... 5%

Daily .................................................... 55% (quizzes count as two daily grades)

Test ......................................................40%

Class Supplies

Class supplies:

  • - 2 to 3 inch binder (clear cover)
  • - 7 dividers
  • - Pencil bag – pencils, pens, colored pencils
  • - Spiral
  • - Loose leaf paper
  • - Tissues
  • - Hand sanitizer

Digital Classroom

This year will represent the largest change in district history in the implementation of the use of technology in the classroom. Both teachers and students will experience significant change this year. The online learning tool edmodo will represent the central place where students and teacher will connect and digital resources will be shared. Make sure your postings are appropriate; otherwise I will limit your ability to post in my classroom. Be sure and obey all classroom, school, and district digital citizenship rules.

Closing Statement

If any assignment is given which requires materials beyond those I have just listed, then I will notify you in advance. You are responsible for your own organization. Student signature indicates that you have read and understand all rules, regulations, expectations and subsequent consequences of this class and acknowledge that implementation of these policies and philosophies will be administered with or without your consent.