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Monday, December 23, 2013

Happy Holidays and Class Reminders!!!

I would first like to wish everyone happy holidays and I hope that you have a great break!!! We were all clearly in need of a little time off and I'm hopefully that everyone enjoys this time!!!

When we return we will be gearing up for our laptops, getting ready for STAAR (May), SATs (late April), and will start up our work in Chapter 13 (demobilization following WW1). We have a lot to accomplish before STAAR hits, so please keep in mind that we will hit the ground running and this semester will move quickly!!!

So how do you get ready? Make sure that you have your notes from 1st semester (they will be helpful when studying for STAAR), a binder or folder, pens and pencils, a highlighter, and your laptop. We will continue to do most everything we have done and will use the laptops (when they arrive) to enhance the great things that we are doing!!!

**If you have any trouble in coming up with the $ for the laptop - please let me know ASAP because I am happy to help those in need. These laptops are not perfect, this situation is not perfect, but they can help us ALL make mine, and many other, classes even greater!!! We will have access to things like never before! So please make sure you're good to go and just let me know if any assistance is needed!**

This semester there will be after school movies for extra credit. If you'd like to come watch a movie (that'll be covering something we are learning about) and write a paragraph about why it helped visualize the material - you can earn extra credit on the assignment of your choosing.

There will be more posted here in the coming days. The blog, and Edmodo, will both be heavily used this semester (in and out of class), so please check as often as you can! Have a great couple of weeks, rest up, have some fun, and get ready to learn a whole lot during our 2nd, and final, semester together!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Getting Ready for Finals Week! December 16-20, 2013

What an interesting 1st semester this has been! There has been a ton of good, some less than good, and a lot of learning and amazing work done in between! Now it is time for the last big thing of the semester: FINALS! So here are some helpful reminders as we embark on our last real day of the semester (Monday):

  • Make sure you are reading over your Final Review Study Guide
  • Make sure you go over the pages listed below (under the Written Finals post) to see some of the pictures, maps, and charts that you'll be encountering
  • The online textbook link is to the right and the username is mslawrence and the password is ushistory
  • Make sure that you ask any questions that you may have tomorrow
  • Make sure that all work is turned in that has been due
  • Make sure that you get as much rest as possible so that you feel good going into your exams
Your teachers wish you the best of luck this week and we hope you do great on your Finals!!! The progress that has been made this semester has been a joy to watch! Do great work, make yourselves proud, and have a great Winter Break! We will see you again January 7, 2014 (next year haha)! Be sure to periodically check the blog for updates about next semester! Have fun!

Monday, December 9, 2013

It's That Time: Written Final


DIRECTIONS: Write a 5 paragraph essay, along with an outline (to organize your thoughts) about something that we have learned about in Chapters 5-12. Either describe something/someone or make an argument about something that occurred (i.e. the Spanish-American War was avoidable, Businesses are/aren't destroying America, etc). Below is exactly what you need to do - please follow the directions but make this your own - full points are awarded to those who go the extra mile and show how creative you really are (i.e. not picking a topic you know a bunch of others are doing, using real world examples, and connecting the past to the present). Do great work and do not settle for mediocrity!!! Do not forget the other work that's due (Study Guide and Ch. 12 stuff - if you haven't turned it in already)!!!

Topic and Outline:
  • Select a topic from Chapters 5-12 (it can be anything from those chapters)
  • Write on a piece of paper and turn in (to make sure its bueno and for a easy 100)
  • Once your topic is OK'd, write an outline (can be any type of outline but you can follow the example right below this). The outline is for a daily grade.
Outline EX:
Intro: (3 bullet points)
Body 1: (3 bullet points)
Body 2: (3 bullet points)
Body 3: (3 bullet points)
Conclusion: (3 bullet points)

Write a 5 paragraph essay about your topic, using your outline to help (that's the point of writing one - organize your thoughts). We will tell you the due date tomorrow in class (and this post will be updated). If you would like to type and submit by email, that is more than OK (and preferred for Mintz's students). Do not over think this, just please get it done, and do great work!!! I cannot wait to read!

Important Page #s From the Book to Help You for the Final!!!

This will be explained more in class (and this post will be updated as well) but there is a picture on each of the following page #s (physical and online books) that will give you a big hint at some questions that you'll be encountering next week! This might be your only chance to see these pics/charts/maps in color. Go check them out!!!

Pages: 163, 169, 178, 196, 211, 227, 237, 247, 253, 260, 275, 281, 282, 291, 293, 330, 339, 359, 369, 373, 379, 380, and 383.

Friday, December 6, 2013

If you want the Fall Final Study Guide Stuff to Fill In...

... email me at and I'll email it to you. Its too long to post on the blog. Have a great weekend and see you next week (our final full week of the 1st semester)!

P.S. Its also posted on Edmodo.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Ch. 11 Study Guide (Test Tuesday Dec 3, 2013)

What to Know for the Test: Imperialism (definition and Graphic Org), The Bayonet Constitution and American business interests, Annex (def), Spheres of Influence, Open Door Policy, Boxer Rebellion, Foreign Policy: Henry Cabot Lodge - Alfred Thayer Mahan - and John Hay, Protectorate (def), Roosevelt Corollary (to the Monroe Doctrine), Dollar Diplomacy and Latin America, Upper House (def), Teller Amendment - Philippine Gov Act - Jones Act: US laws in foreign countries, USS Maine and the Spanish-American War, John Pershing and Pancho Villa, Rough Riders and Teddy Roosvelt, US Interventions in... Graphic Org, Governing Graphic Org, Outcomes of the Mexican Rev. Graphic Org (all of this makes this test seem longer than it is - so you do not freak out)

Building Social Studies Skills Ch. Review Questions to Know for the Test: Pg. 155 #1; Pg. 189 #s 1 and 3; Pg. 241 #1, Pg. 351 #s 1 and 3


  • Make sure Ch. 11 Packets are turned in
  • Make sure you check your GradeSpeed (I am entering a ton of grades and I want to make sure that ALL is bueno)
  • We start Ch. 12 this week
  • Final Study Guides will be distributed shortly (get Ch. 12 done 1st!!!)
  • Make sure you let your teacher know if you're having any issues!!!
  • Please make sure you are doing great work and having a little fun!
  • Make sure ALL your classes are good to go (Finals are just around the corner)

Upcoming for the Rest of the Fall Semester

1. Please make sure that you review your Ch. 11 notes. There will be a test on Tuesday (a study guide will be posted shortly).

2. For the Final (which will be covering Chapters 5-12), the best thing that you can do right now is review your notes starting in Ch. 5. Your textbook (physical or online) will come into play shortly (many of the charts, maps, and pics from chapters 5-12 will be on the test). I am working on the study guide and you will receive it sometime next week.

3. Please let me know if you have any questions or need to turn in any work. I am missing quite a few Ch. 11 Packets (I am also currently working on grades). If you owe me any work, or are in need of any assistance, please let your teacher know ASAP!!! Don't let your grade fall apart for any reason.

4. I hope that everyone is in the midst of a great Thanksgiving break!!! We are all in need!

5. See y'all on Monday (be ready to work)!

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Ch. 10 Study Guide (Test Nov. 19, 2013)

Stuff to Know for the Test: Wisconsin Idea, Theodore Roosevelt, 19th Amendment, Upton Sinclair and The Jungle, Gifford Pinchot, Taft/Roosevelt and the Split in the Republican Party, The Progressive (Bull Moose) Party, The Environment (Graphic Org), The Progressive Party (Graphic Org), A Split (Graphic Org), POTUS Wilson and Big Business (Graphic Org), Greater Voting Rights (Graphic Org - Know how to match the term with its definition)

Building Social Studies Skills Questions from the Book for the Test (Go Over These!!!): Pg. 125 #s 1 and 3; Pg. 155 #3; Pg. 323 #s 1 and 3

OTHER ASSORTEDNESS FOR THE UPCOMING WEEK: We will be working on Ch. 11, Class Debates (see below for directions), Tuesday is test day, Wednesday is a half-day, and this is the last full week of classes before Thanksgiving break!!! Please work hard, be prepared, and let's have a lot of (educational) fun!!!

Friday, November 8, 2013

Ch. 9 Study Guide (Nov. 12, 2013)

The following topics are on the test: Muckrakers, Reform(ers), Freedom of Contract, Lochner v. NY, Mueller v. Oregon, Triangle Shirtwaist Fire, Billy Sunday, NAACP, Temperance Movement, Louis D. Brandeis, Socialism, Open Shop, Closed Shop, Ida Tarbell, Lincoln Steffens, Moral Problems Graphic Org, Rulings on Labor Laws Graphic Org, Government Corruption

Ch. Review Pg. #'s from Textbook (physical and online): Read the Building Social Studies Skills #s 1 AND 3 on pages 93, 125, 155

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Don't Forget: Monday Nov. 4, 2013

Please don't forget we will be signing up for our laptops all day on Monday (make sure that you know YOUR GradeSpeed login). We will be working on debates when this is over, so please be prepared.

P.S. Rockets Update: 3-0!!!

P.P.S. I'll be tired tomorrow - going to see the Texans (hopefully crush the...) Colts tonight @Reliant!!! Its my friend Edward's wedding present (from me - I hope he enjoys) and it'll be a great night! Look for me on TV (haha). Please cut your teacher some slack tomorrow (as he ALWAYS does for you).

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Class Debates!!!

We are going to have small groups debating issues of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era. The groups will debate key issues of the 2 eras, as well as if these issues are having any impact today (2013). You will also, in association with Durning and I, grade the debates, and award winners. This is a chance for everyone to shine (especially those who love to talk way too much)! Here's how to accomplish:

Roles: (For each side) - Groups of 5-7

  • 2 Speakers (Require for each group size)
  • 1-2 Writers/Graders
  • 1-2 Researchers/Graders
  • 1 Notetaker/Debate Prep Person (Required for each group size)
  • The Speakers need to be good talkers; The Researchers need to be able to do research; The Writers need to be good writers; and the Notetaker/Debate Preper needs to be a good listener and suggester of ideas
  1. Break into the above group
  2. Figure out the role of each group member (write down on a piece of paper with the date, period, and turn in to Durning and Mintz (separate daily grade for each group member)
  3. Find the 1st Digital History reading (the Gilded Age) and get the new one (Progressive Era); Highlight and read each
  4. Pick a pro topic AND a con topic (write on a piece of paper with everyone's name, the date, and the period) and give to Durning and Mintz and we will match you with your opposition
  5. Using your textbooks (physical and online), as well as the internet, conduct some research (researchers) and give it to the writers; Writers write up the research into arguments for the Speakers and prep the Speakers; Speakers will be the ones actually debating; The Notetaker will be taking notes during the debate looking to help the Speakers by listening for mistakes from the others side and making sure the Speakers pounce, as well as the person who's responsible for making sure the Speakers are good to go; 1 Writer and 1 Researcher will be grading for each side during the debate; Grades are combined with those from Durning and Mintz (each set worth 50 points for a total possible score of 100)
  6. *At least 3 points need to be debated on each side. While making these up, come see Durning and Mintz to help make sure these are good (look for the most important bits of information - the stuff that will truly prove your side is correct - no tangential information/points)
  7. Project over and fun hopefully had!!!
Grading Rubric: (For up to 50 points - Durning and Mintz will decide the other 50 for a total possible score of a 100 as a Test grade)
(Up To) 20 Points: Argument (The stronger the argument, the stronger the points given)
(Up To) 10 Points: Ability to Argue Back and Forth (More points to the group who proves not only themselves right, but their opposition wrong)
(Up To) 5 Points: Clarity of Points Made (More points for those who have clearly done every step correctly (It'll be obvious - TRUST)
(Up To) 5 Points: Every member Participating (It'll be obvious - TRUST)

Dates and Things to Keep in Mind: The due date will updated shortly (you will have at least a week to accomplish all the set up and the actual debate)
  • You will be given class time but we will also be finishing Ch. 9 and starting Ch. 10; No goofing off; You will be given more than enough time and if you don't accomplish everything, your group's grade is at risk
  • We will also be signing up for our upcoming laptops on Monday - this Thursday, Friday, and ALL of next week will be VERY BUSY - if you are absent: check the blogs for updates AND email Durning or Mintz for the work - you must stay on top of stuff for the next 7 school days - NO EXCUSES/PROCRASTINATION!!!
  • Each highlighted page is due for a grade as well
  • On EVERYONE'S highlighted pages attach a piece of paper that says the places you did research (does not have to be full on biblio - just title and author AND/OR title and web address)
Good Things to Read (For Fun):
#gorockets #1-0 #championshiporbust #bestintheworld 

Class Debates Project, No Test Next Week, Laptop Signup

More on these to follow but here's what you need to know now:

  • Instead of the Ch. 9 Test being next week, it will now be Tuesday Nov. 12, 2013
  • We will now be doing class debates (subjects to come shortly) - we will start setting this up, as well as completing Ch. 9 tomorrow and Friday
  • On Monday (Nov. 4, 2013) we will be signing up for the laptops: (read this next part carefully because there will be consequences for this not getting done) All you need to know is your GradeSpeed login!!! You will write this down for us on Friday (so that we can make this happen on the quick - the pages will then be destroyed for confidentiality purposes). You all will be the 1st in the school to do this and we will once again be pioneering the way for everyone else (as always). Be prepared for this!!!
  • Grades for the Ch. 8 Test, and the rest of the projects will be up shortly - make sure your GradeSpeed looks good (the 6-weeks is nearing the end)
  • Check my blog more - it helps!!!
  • Have a good one!

Friday, October 25, 2013

Ch. 8 Study Guide (Test: Tuesday Oct. 29, 2013)

For the following 2 items, please be able to write about what they are, why they were important back then, and why they are important today or worth remembering today: (I'll give you a index card on Monday for these 2) - click the links for more info (do not just use MY WORDS!!!)
1. Graft, Kickbacks, and Politicians: Graft and kickbacks were notable forms of political corruption during the Gilded Age. Politicians took bribes, stole $, intimidated voters, and generally worked against the will of the people. When politicians become corrupt, not only is our country hurt, but it causes many people to distrust the government, and in turn, they don't vote. This was important during the Gilded Age because the will of the people was often not heard and lead to massive distrust to this day (2013).
2. The Gilded AgeMark Twain called the late 19th century the "Gilded Age." By this, he meant that the period was glittering on the surface but corrupt underneath. While many people earned immense fortunes, more were employed, women saw many gains, the US became industrial and started its ascent to being a super power, many workers worked in poor conditions, for little pay and long hours, women suffered at the hands of abusive men, children were forced into the labor force, wealth disparity hit new highs (the rich got richer and the poor became super poor), and race relations were poor at best. This is important to understand today (2013) because many are saying that we are reliving the Gilded Age of the late 1800s with wealth disparity being even worse, women still being under paid, children's childhoods being ripped away, bad pay, less/lax business regulations, and the government being in a state of uncompromising gridlock.
Pg. #s for DBQ's: 217, the one from the board
Other Things to Study for the Test: William McKinley, William Jennings Bryan, Immigrants likely to be influenced by Political Machines, Cooperatives (CO-OPs), Graduated Income Tax, Gold Standard, National Grange, Gilded Age, Patronage (Spoils System), Pendleton Civil Service Act, Interstate Commerce Act, William Marcy Tweed, One (1) Term POTUS', , Why Immigrants were Important to Political Machines (Graphic Org), Farmer's Organizations (Graphic Org), and...

Of Note for the Week of Oct. 28-Nov. 1, 2013:
  • Wednesday is a half day
  • We will be working on Ch. 9 this week
  • We will be discussing future technology/websites coming to us
  • We will be using the online textbook
  • We will hopefully have a lot of fun

Sunday, October 20, 2013


You will need your textbook from time to time very soon. I'm giving you time now to find it and have it handy. You will not need it much for class but it has some things that will help you on upcoming exams. FIND YOUR TEXTBOOK ASAP!!! More on this in class. Also don't forget to get a highlighter, it's needed the rest of the semester!!! And please make sure that you're good to go not only in my class, but all of your classes!!! We are going to be doing a ton of stuff to get you ready for the stuff we do each week (notes and exams), stuff in the near future (Finals, STAAR, and SATs), and for your further down the line futures (Gov/Econ next year and any future education you might get). Be prepared, I mean it!!! We are tightening a lot up for the remainder of the year. Once again, be prepared!!!

Friday, October 18, 2013

Ch. 7 Study Guide (Test Oct. 22, 2013)

For the following 3 items, please be able to write about what they are, why they were important back then, and why they are important today or worth remembering today: (I'll give you a index card on Monday for these 3) - click the links for more info (do not just use MY WORDS!!!)
1. John Dewey and Education Reform: Dewey was a strong proponent of progressive educational reform. He believed that education should be based on the principle of learning through doing, education should focus mainly on students' interactions with the present, and that the past matters as well. This is important to understand today in a climate of (bad) education reform that focuses on increased standardized testing, decreased education spending, increased class sizes, more students living in poverty, the growing digital divide, and less focus on learning by doing (with more learning to the tests).
2. Yellow Journalism: Type of journalism that relies on sensationalism and lurid exaggeration to attract readers AND/OR lies and/or propaganda which are passed of as legitimate journalism, though they favor 1 political party or viewpoint. This was important to understand in the late 19th and early 20th centuries as the media had a huge influence on the public, and yellow journalism caused much misinformation. This is important to understand today because of the rise of social media we see more and more forms of yellow journalism (or at least journalism that isn't always fact checked).
3. Skyscrapers and Growing Populations: Skyscrapers are important because when a cities' population gets too big and there are too many buildings with too little space, cities begin to build upward instead of out. NYC, Austin, and Chicago are good examples of this. This was important to understand in the late 19th century, early 20th century, and now in 2013 as America's growing populations/cities needed to find places to put people comfortably. Disease, poverty, and other big issues come up with more and more living close together and in big cities.

Other Things to Know: Walter Camp (father of football), Abner Doubleday (disputed inventor of baseball - English origin), James Naismith (invented basketball), Scott Joplin (King of Ragtime), Vaudeville, Women's changing roles/professionalism (graphic org), Graphic Org: Positive Effects, Negative Effects, and Innovations of the Industrial Revolution, Graphic Org: Institutions that Help Immigrants, Graphic Org: New forms of Entertainment in the late 1800s, Steerage, Chinese Immigration/Exclusion, Grover Cleveland, Nativism

Of Note for the Week of October 21-25, 2013:
  • It's Spirit Week next week!
  • Make sure that you have a highlighter next week!!!
  • Be ready to work next week because besides the test, we will finish ch. 8 and start moving on ch. 9
  • Check your gradespeed, progress reports will be coming up shortly
  • Have a great weekend!
P.S. Please support Victoria Turcios for Homecoming Queen! She deserves it! We will be voting in class on Monday.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Week of Oct. 14-18, 2013

1. Don't forget to be working on the project (directions are in the post below)! The pictures (please make a collage if possible) and the mini-report are due at the beginning of each period on Tuesday Oct. 15, 2013.
2. We will be working on Ch. 8 this week. If you have any missing work (check your GradeSpeed or ask your teacher), get it done ASAP!!!
3. Wednesday is a late start day if you are not taking the PSAT.
4. The Ch. 7 Test will be on Tuesday Oct. 22, 2013 (a study guide will be up next week).

Awesome overview of the Gilded Age (please read).

6 Ways You Can Study "Less" With Better Results!

USA Today college/education news (lots of good stories all the time).

Current Events/School Issues: Please enjoy!
Great article on understanding the gov shutdown and debt limit.
A very interesting article on the writing portion of the SAT (sad but good to know).
When LA students got iPads (and everything went wrong). - 2 articles
An important article about student data and school laptops (sad but good to know).
Helping great kids get to where they need to be, even if there's issues.
Cultural synesthesia and how it affects you.
H-town's Top 100 restaurants (2013).

The school year is really moving quick now!!! Please let your teacher(s) know if you're having any issues!!! Have a good one!

Sunday, October 6, 2013

A Moment in Time Picture Project

What this is? This project is about recreating a famous moment in time from something that you have learned about in the first 7 chapters of material. The catch is that you will have to fully recreate the picture using only the members in your group. If you need a flag, someone needs to be the flag (by positioning themselves correctly). Same with any non-human thing in the photo.
How to accomplish?

  • Step 1: Think about the favorite thing that you've learned about in the 1st 7 chapters
  • Step 2: Find a group (no maximum, but at least 2 people are needed)
  • Step 3: Find a picture (from Google Images or Wikipedia) and make sure you have enough group members
  • Step 4: Find a good place to take the pic (can be done in school - there will be some class time given - or out of school) and then recreate your pic
  • Step 5: Email (; BOTH the original photo AND the remade pic along with the following mini-report in the email: Group members names; Title of your pic, why your group picked this photo to recreate (in 2-3 sentences - explain), and whether this was an enjoyable project or not (in 2-3 sentences - explain) - 7 total sentences (don't be lazy)

Are any props/costumes needed? No, but feel free to step up your game (it will only help your grade), but is not required.
Rubric: This will be a TEST level grade and will be comprised of the following areas - for 100 total points (points will be deducted for not following the directions and for not truly recreating the pic):

  • 25 Points: Did your group accurately recreate the original photo?
  • 25 Points: Did your group follow ALL directions?
  • 25 Points: Did you email me both pics?
  • 25 Points: Did you do the mini report in the email, answering ALL questions?

Due Date: Tuesday October 15, 2013).
*Note: Just make this happen. The point is to see what you and your group can do, not what I can direct you to do. Feel free to ask any questions, but keep that in mind.
P.S. The whole point of this project is for you to do something fun and put a smile on my face! :) This should be the easiest project you ever do, so do great work!!!
P.P.S. We will be doing this 1 more time next 6-weeks and then 3 times next semester.
P.P.P.S. The best pics will be featured on the blog, IG, and shown in the school.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Ch. 6 Test Study Guide

For the following 5 items, please be able to write about their importance: (I'll give you a index card on Monday for these 5) - There are 40 total questions;
**UPDATE: This will be a scantron test, so you will need a pencil, but there's writing and you will also need a pen!!!
1. Vertical Integration and Andrew Carnegie (He bought railroad companies and iron mines. If he owned the rails and the mines, all the stuff he needed to produce and ship his steel, he could reduce his costs and produce cheaper steel)
2. Horizontal Integration and John Rockefeller (Rockefeller often bought other oil companies to eliminate competition, thereby making his company, Standard Oil, the most profitable company because he could charge any price with little to no competition. This is a process known as HORIZONTAL INTEGRATION)
3. Philanthropy (Rockefeller, Carnegie, and other extremely wealthy people started giving massive amounts of their fortunes to fund libraries, colleges, art, and other things to make the US better - but their extreme wealth came at the misfortune of their workers - a potential cause of why they gave back so much)
4. Skilled vs. Unskilled Workers (Skilled labor refers to labor that requires workers who have specialized training or a learned skill-set to perform the work; Unskilled labor does not require workers to have special training or skills - the largest sector of employment is unskilled - and those jobs come ad go - as more and more jobs require education/training)
5. Rags-to-Riches Themes and Businessmen (Novels (by Horatio Alger) about impoverished boys and their rise from humble backgrounds to lives of middle-class security and comfort through hard work, determination, courage, and honesty. This was known as a "rags-to-riches" narrative, which had a formative effect on America during the Gilded Age because most businessmen saw themselves as coming from low beginnings, worked hard, and then became the richest and most powerful people on Earth - even if their beginnings weren't so humble)

Other Things to Know: Can you trust a trust?, George Westinghouse and Pullman and how they helped trains, Alexander Graham Bell, The Gospel of Wealth (Carnegie), Bessemer Process and Steel, Communism, Free Enterprise, Capitalism, Monopoly, Trusts, Corporations, Bad working conditions, Thomas Edison, Telegraph, Carnegie, Rockefeller, 2nd Industrial Revolution, Positive effects of Oil (graphic org), Growth of steel (graphic org), Worker safety decreasing, Transcontinental Railroad, Urban poverty increasing, Patents, Copyrights, Sherman Antitrust Act, AFL and Samuel Gompers, Terence V. Powderly, Horatio Alger, Great Upheaval, Haymarket Riot

Of Note for the week of October 7-11: Ch. 6 Test is on Tuesday, Finish up Ch. 7, and then start and work on Ch. 8. Report Cards come out Friday October 11 (make sure your grades are good to go, my gradebook is now closed - most people did quite well (woohoo). Please ask if any help, tutorials, or anything else is needed. Let's have another great week!

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Ch. 5 Test Study Guide

For the following 5 items, please be able to write about their importance: (I'll give you a index card on Monday for these 5)

  1. Barbed Wire and the Open Range (the closing of the Open Range)
  2. William H. Seward and the Purchase of Alaska (the discovery of oil)
  3. Dawes Act and Indians (the government trying to give land to Native Americans which resulted in the loss of 2/3's of Indian land)
  4. Comstock Lode and Silver (the discovery of silver, along with of minerals, resulted in massive migration, immigration, and mineral wealth)
  5. US Department of Agriculture (Agency responsible for developing and executing US federal government policy on farming, agriculture, forestry, and food)
Other Things to Know for the QUIZ: Sod Houses, Seward's Folly, Bonanza Farms, Railhead, The Dawes Act, Longhorns, Long Drives, Barbed Wire, Pacific Railway Act, Morrill Act, Homestead Act, Hard-Rock Mining, Hydraulic Mining, and the Patio Process

Of Note for The Week of September 30-October 4, 2013: This week we will have a Ch. 5 Test on Tuesday (Oct. 1), finish up work on Ch. 6 (Monday-Wednesday), and start Ch. 7 (Wednesday-Friday). The 6-weeks ends on Oct. 8, so make sure you are good to go for ALL of your classes. Please ask if any help, tutorials, or anything else is needed. Let's have another great week!

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Week of Sept. 23-27, 2013

This week we will be starting and working on Ch. 6 and taking our Chs. 3-4 QUIZ on Tuesday. You need paper and a pen each day. And please do not forget that Wednesday is an Early Dismissal day. The Chs 3-4 QUIZ Study Guide is the post below. Please enjoy and let's have another great week!

Chs. 3-4 Study Guide for QUIZ (Sept. 24)

Be able to write about the following:
Causes of Southern Succession:
1. Economic and social differences between the North (Industrial) and the South (Agricultural)
2. State’ Rights vs. Federal Rights: Where is the true power?
3. The fight between Slave and Non-Slave State Proponents: Should slavery be allowed in the US?
4. Growth of the Abolition Movement: Highlighted by - the publishing of Harriet Beecher Stowe's Uncle Tom's Cabin, the Dred Scott Case, John Brown's Raid, and the passage of the Fugitive Slave Act, that held individuals responsible for harboring fugitive slaves even if they were located in non-slave states
5. The Election of Lincoln: The South fearing for their institutions
Henry Clay and Compromise: Northern politician (The Great Compromiser) who developed the American System as well as negotiated numerous compromises to try to bring peace in the US over slavery and other issues.
13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments: 13th Amendment: (1865) Abolished slavery. 14th Amendment: (1868) Gave full rights of citizenship to all people born or naturalized in the US, except for American Indians. 15th Amendment: (1870) Gave African American men the right to vote. These are the Amendments that came as a result of the Civil War.
Compromise of 1877 and Rutherford B. Hayes: Agreement to settle the disputed POTUS election of 1876; (D)s agreed to accept Rutherford B. Hayes (R) as POTUS in return for the removal of federal troops from the South.
Ulysses S. Grant: (R; #18; 1869–1877) As POTUS he led the Radical (R)s in their effort to eliminate Confederate nationalism and slavery. Grant effectively destroyed the KKK in 1871. Grant was the 1st POTUS to establish Civil Service reform. His reputation was marred by his repeated defense of corrupt appointees, and the Panic of 1873. His (R) Party split in 1872 with reformers denouncing him.
Other Things to Know: Lincoln (Civil War President), Robert E. Lee, Bleeding Kansas, Conscription, Emancipation Proclamation, Thaddeus Stevens vs. Andrew Johnson, Amnesty, Dred Scott, Poll Taxes and Literacy Tests Suppress Votes, Elizabeth Blackwell and Clara Barton, Nat Turner, William Lloyd Garrison, KKK, Freedmen’s Bureau, Harriet Beecher Stowe, The Civil War was from 1861-1865, Abolitionists against slavery, the Black Codes, Secession, Habeus Corpus, Reconstruction (after the CW), John Wilkes Booth, Panic of 1873, Carpetbaggers

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Ch. 1-2: What to Know for the Quiz on Sept. 17

Be able to explain in sentences:
George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Andrew Jackson, Abe Lincoln, Dred Scott Decision
Other things of note:
Fundamental orders of Conn, Pilgrims, Middle Passage, Stamp Act, John Marshall, Louisiana Purchase, Manifest Destiny, Bill of Rights, Free Enterprise, Missouri Compromise, Popular Sovereignty, Frederick Douglass, Dorthea Dix, John Brown, John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, The Explorers, # of Congressmen and Senators, The Confederacy, 2nd Great Awakening 

Don't Forget:

  • We start Ch. 5 tomorrow
  • We discuss college stuff with Ms. Manraj on Wednesday (all you need is yourself)
  • The Ch. 3-4 Quiz is Sept. 24
  • The Ch. 5 Test is Oct. 1
  • Besides all that, we will be discussing STAAR, highlighting, and writing - be prepared
  • Read over your notes!!! It will help 

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Classes So Far...

So far the 2013-2014 school year has been quite good (at least for me)! Here are some things to keep in mind with Open House (Sept. 11) and the close of the 1st 3-weeks of school coming up:

  • Make sure that you check your GradeSpeed and make sure there are no missing assignments
  • Make sure you have your Ch. 1 Notes and the Ch. 2-4 Packets
  • Make sure you are working on the highlighting/underlining and please ask if you have any questions
  • The packets are due Thursday, which is more than enough time to complete (I've already had a few people complete it all and turned them in)
  • Don't forget that I'm always available @lunch and after school for questions, news watching, or just to talk if any issues are being had - please take advantage if needed
  • The Chs. 1-2 Quiz is Tuesday Sept. 17 and the Chs. 3-4 Quiz is Tuesday Sept 24
  • We start Ch. 5 on Monday, with a little review for the 1st quiz, and getting back to some STAAR prep
  • I've been very proud of my students so far, a little talky (except 2nd), but everyone's been pretty wonderful and I couldn't have asked for a better start to the year!
All good, make sure that you're good to go, and let's close the 1st half of this grading cycle in a great way!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Class Reminder and a Thank You

First, don't forget to go to the library tomorrow so that we can sign up for and try out Edmodo. And 2nd, thanks for a wonderful 1st week so far!!! I have immensely enjoyed meeting everyone and working with you! It looks like this is going to be a great year and I'm so glad that everyone is along for this ride! 1 more day till our excellent 3 day weekend! Woohoo!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Welcome to the 2013-2014 School Year!

To my new students: Welcome to the new school year and welcome to place that you will get lots of class, and school, news and updates. There will be a lot to discuss this year, but this blog will be used to tell you what's going on in class, when assignments are due, when tests and quizzes are, and any other general news. If you ever need me I am in room #306 and my email is (I get my email on my phone so you will be able to easily reach me). I will be adding posts shortly about what's coming up starting August 26, but until then, enjoy the rest of your summer and get ready for a great school year!
P.S. In advance, welcome to the best class offered at BHS! Best in the World, trust!
P.P.S. If you like technology, you will immensely enjoy this school year, and if you don't, it might not be as fun (sorry more on this later). 

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Last Post for the 2012-2013 School Year!

Thanks to everyone for making this a truly great year! A lot of excellent work was done, a lot of fun was had, and I hope that everyone had a great time! I'm so proud of the accomplishments of my students and hope that everyone has a great next year and summer! Have a fun 3 months off and hopefully I'll get to see people again in August (unless you work at places I go, then I'll see y'all soon - haha). Thanks again!

Saturday, June 1, 2013

1 Week To Go...

The regular portion of the 2012-2013 school year is now done! What an interesting year this has been! Next week, our final week, is dedicated to finals. Here's the schedule:
Monday: Periods 2 and 5
Tuesday: Periods 3 and 7
Wednesday: Periods 4 and 6
Thursday: Periods 1 and 8

Make sure that you review your study guides (it has EVERYTHING you need to know)! There were some people who did not turn in the study guide or do the final essay, so make sure that you check your GradeSpeed and come prepared. I know everyone is tired, but you have just 4 days left. Do great work and make me proud! Have a great weekend and let's have 1 last great week together!

P.S. Thanks to all who got their work turned in on time and helped me organize and trash some stuff on Friday! Very appreciated and I thank you all lots!!!

P.P.S. I cannot wait to see my classroom with a SMARTBOARD in it!!! :)

P.P.P.S. Email me if you need anything to help you get ready for the FINAL.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Due Dates...

After today's Ch. 27, and Final, Test, here are the other things you need to remember:
Tomorrow-Friday: Watch - Zero Dark 30, work on/finish Final Essays (due Friday); work on FINALS Study Guide (due next Friday)
Monday: Off; Memorial Day
Tuesday-Friday: Work on FINALS Study Guide (due that Friday).
Please let me know if you have any questions or need any assistance. School is almost over!

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Work for May 6-14, 2013

MONDAY: (Regular Schedule) Discuss Ch. 25 Written Exam (see post below); Ch. 26 Notes
TUESDAY: (Late Start for STAAR) Ch. 26 Notes/Discussion
WEDNESDAY: (Late Start for STAAR) Ch. 26 Notes (Turn in notes when completed) and start Ch. 27
THURSDAY: (Late Start for STAAR) Ch. 27 Notes/Discussion
FRIDAY: **Please note: I will most likely only be around for 2nd and 3rd period due to meetings and a commitment; (Regular Schedule w/ AP Exams) Ch. 27 Notes/Discussion
MONDAY: Ch. 25 Written Exam Due; Ch. 27 Notes
TUESDAY: Ch. 26 Test
I will be available at lunch and after school everyday, except Friday, if needed. Make sure that things are done in a timely matter with many having to work on AP and STAAR exams. Please let me know if there are any issues b/c we can always compromise on the turn in date (but let me know ASAP, waiting till the last second will result in me not being as caring on the compromise). Have a great weekend!!!

CH. 25 Exam

DIRECTIONS: In complete sentences, no set amount (each question requires a different amount to fully answer), FULLY answer ANY 2 of the questions below. You will do a draft/outline on an index card that I will give you on Monday.  Each question will be worth 50 points (for a 100 point total) For each question 30 of the points will be for your answer (and its completeness), 10 points for originality and using quotes from the text to prove your point, and 10 points for doing a draft on a notecard, and stapling the index card to your page (5 points for doing it and 5 points for remembering to include). ANY form of cheating/copying will result in an automatic 0 for this test. Do good work. This is to practice for the upcoming final exam essay. Do good work and make your teacher proud! This will be due on Monday May 13, 2013. +3 BONUS for those who turn in early (which is a good idea b/c the Ch. 26 exam will be on Tuesday May 14, 2013).

Ch. 26 Notes: THE REPUBLICAN REVOLUTION (1980-1992)

OVERVIEW: Public frustration with the federal gov grew in the 1970s as the Watergate Scandal broke, the energy crisis emerged, and the economy continued to weaken. Jimmy Carter (D) was elected POTUS with a promise to reform gov. Numerous obstacles, including a worsening economic situation, hampered his presidency. In this chapter you will learn how Ronald Reagan (R) was elected in 1980 and set out to reform the economy and foreign relations.
*(Don’t Write) People lost faith in Carter and blamed him for the country’s woes. This backlash would see Reagan (former actor and CA Governor) come to power in 1980. The rise against a separation of church and state would have its beginnings in this decade. Economic policies, known as AUSTERITY (i.e. deep cutting of gov programs), would have their seeds planted under Reagan. Critics will argue that reducing the size and influence of gov, lessening regulations, and cuts to social programs (all favored by Reagan) might have some short-term success (which we saw in the early 80s), but long-term many more get hurt (lead by the poor and minorities, as well as the 1987 Stock Market Crash, increased homelessness, job loss, and increasing wealth disparity).
AYATOLLAH KHOMEINI: Militant Islamic leader in Iran; Iran Hostage Crisis came under him; Overthrew previous gov.; Criticized for harsh tactics and human rights violations.
IRAN HOSTAGE CRISIS: (1979-81) 52 Americans were held hostage in the US Embassy in Tehran, Iran. This was the final downfall of Carter’s admin. The hostages were released moments after Reagan is sworn in.
RONALD REAGAN: (R #40; 1980-88); Defeated Jimmy Carter, who had fallen out of favor with the US public; Oldest elected @69; “The Great Communicator,” Increased: Military spending, focus on Latin America-(fearing that it would fall under SU control), Religion in gov decisions; Decreased: Regulations, taxes, gun control, abortion access.
SUPPLY-SIDE ECONOMICS: Theory stating that tax cuts would lead to increased economic activity and tax revenues, and therefore to a balanced budget; AKA Trickle-Down Economics. Critics argue that this results in a growing discrepancy between the haves and have-nots.
REAGANOMICS: Reagan’s economic program; Based on large tax cuts to encourage business investment.
NEW RIGHT: Various conservative voters’ groups that grew in strength during the 1980s; Reagan’s strongest supporters; Conservatives/Evangelicals will play a bigger and bigger role in politics, namely in the (R) Party.
MORAL MAJORITY: Conservative religious political org. Along w/ Reagan supported: school prayer, strong defense, free-market policies; Opposed to abortion, gun control, and busing to achieve racial balance in schools.
JERRY FALWELL: Leader of the Moral Majority; Felt that the nation was facing numerous problems b/c many had turned away from the “Christian” values that founded this nation. Inspired many others religious leaders that we see active in politics today.
STRATEGIC DEFENSE INITIATIVE: (SDI) Plan for a defense system in space to protect the US from Soviet missiles; Never actually implemented. Nicknamed “Star Wars” and was heavily criticized.
SANDINISTAS: Revolutionary political party in Nicaragua that overthrew a pro-US dictator in 1979, causing US resentment.
CONTRAS: Anti-Sandinista rebel army in Nicaragua that was supported by the Reagan admin. Comes from the Spanish term “contrarevolucionarios.”
*(Don’t Write) Many changes highlighted Reagan’s 2nd term including more women in gov, a weakening economy (including the stock market crashing in 1987), a huge political scandal, and changing relations w/ the Soviets.
GERALDINE FERRARO: NY Rep.; Walter Mondale’s (Dem. Opponent of Bush) VP pick; 1st woman to run on a major-party pres. ticket.
SANDRA DAY O’CONNOR: 1st woman to serve on the SCOTUS; Conservative but usually votes w/ the Liberals.
GRAMM-RUDMAN-HOLLINGS ACT: (1985) Law that required the gov to cut spending when the deficit grows above a certain level. Caused huge federal deficits. L
INSIDER TRADING: Use of confidential financial information by stockbrokers for personal gain; Stock Market crashed in 1987. People in the gov are exempt from these rules. L
S&L CRISIS: Economic collapse in the savings and loan AND banking industries caused by risky loans in the 1980s.
IRAN-CONTRA AFFAIR: 1980s scandal in which the Reagan admin. secretly sold weapons to Iran in exchange for the release of US hostages in Lebanon and then used the profits from the sale to fund the Contras in Nicaragua after Congress had forbidden direct gov aid.
OLIVER NORTH: Lt. Colonel who funneled the $ in the Iran-Contra Affair.
MIKHAIL GORBACHEV: Soviet leader (1985); Easing, for a few, of Cold War tensions came under him through…
GLASNOST: Soviet policy (1980s) that promoted political openness and freedom of expression; Went along w/ a dramatic easing of Cold War tensions.
PERESTROIKA: Soviet policy (1980s) that initiated political and economic reforms.
INTERMEDIATE-RANGE NUCLEAR FORCES TREATY: (INF-1987) Treaty signed by POTUS Reagan and Soviet leader Gorbachev; Eliminated all medium-range nuclear weapons from Europe.
*(Don’t Write) The late 80s were heralded by issues with space exploration, technology, sexuality, disease, wars, global warming concerns, HIV/AIDS fears, and a changing political landscape. People born in the 80s and 90s are known as Millennials. Foreign issues and politics, in the US and the Middle East, took center stage during the 80s.
CHRISTA MCAULIFFE: Social Studies teacher picked to be a civilian passenger on the Challenger.
CHALLENGER: US space shuttle that exploded, on live TV with millions watching, in 1986 after takeoff, killing all 7 crewmembers.
AIDS: (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome) Often-fatal disease that forces the body’s immune system to shut down, making it easier for a person to contract other illnesses. Came to the forefront w/ Magic Johnson
JESSE JACKSON: African American leader; Ran w/ “Rainbow Coalition” and turned out the largest turnout of African American voters in a primary (at the time).
MICHAEL DUKAKIS: (D) challenger to Bush; Viewed as weak on crime from a series of TV ads associating him with convicted killer Willie Horton (the original attack ad).
LLOYD BENTSEN: (D) TX Senator who was Dukakis’ running mate.
GEORGE H.W. BUSH: (R #41; 1988-1992); Reagan’s VP; Former CIA Director; Most famous for saying, “Read my lips, no new taxes” and then raised taxes.
DAN QUAYLE: (R); Bush’s VP and a former Senator; Could not spell potato.
COMMONWEALTH OF INDEPENDENT STATES: (CIS) An alliance formed by many of the former Soviet republics in Dec. 1991.
OPERATION DESERT STORM: (1991) UN invasion led by the US to make Iraq withdraw from Kuwait. The Persian Gulf War was the 1st war won using almost entirely high tech weapons (Tomahawk missiles, stealth fighters, and GPS). This war also marked the start of women taking more roles in war (it would be 2012 before women were allowed in combat).
NORMAN SCHWARZKOPF: Commander of US forces during Operation Desert Storm.
COLIN POWELL: Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; 1st African American Secretary of State (under George W. Bush). Extremely respected. On his testimony to the UN, the US goes to war in Iraq and Afghanistan after 9/11.
CLARENCE THOMAS: Conservative SCUTOS justice (nominated by Bush), whose brutal confirmation hearings (accused of sexual harassment by a former coworker) paved the way for the partisan politics we see today. Known for rarely saying anything during cases.
AMERICANS WITH DISABILITIES ACT: (ADA-1990) Law that prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities in employment, transportation, telephone services, and public buildings.
WAR ON DRUGS: Bush’s organized effort to end drug smuggling and illegal drug use. This effort was led by Bush’s arrest of Manuel Noriega, dictator, and drug smuggler, in Panama.
1. (Sect. 1) Why did voters choose Ronald Reagan over Jimmy Carter in the 1980 pres. election? Voters chose Reagan over Carter b/c Reagan promised solutions to problems that Carter seemed unable to solve.
2. (Sect. 1) How did the Reagan admin. fight the Cold War in the early 1980s? Reagan fought the Cold War with increased military spending and a tougher stance towards the Soviet Union.
3. (Sect. 2) Why did public confidence in the economy begin to weaken in the late 1980s? Public confidence in the economy began to weaken because of a rising deficit, 1987 stock market crash, and the S&L crisis.
4. (Sect. 2) What were the main issues in the Iran-Contra affair? The main issues in the Iran-Contra Affair were the sale of weapons to Iran, illegal funding of the Contras, and Reagan’s role in the scandal.
5. (Sect. 3) What changed in American society in the 1980s? Economic boom, new computer technology, and AIDS all changed American Society in the 1980s.
6. (Sect. 3) What led to the Persian Gulf War? Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait led to the Persian Gulf War.
1. (Economics) What effects did Reagan’s economic policies have on the country? Reagan’s economic policies increased the wealth of many Americans but also led to cuts in social programs and decreased gov regulation.
2. (Global Relations) How did Reagan’s approach to defense change the Cold War? Reagan’s hard-line stance and emphasis on buildup of nuclear weapons led to increased Cold War tensions.
3. (Science, Technology, and Society) How did computer technology change in the 1980s? Computer tech changed in the 1980s with personal computers (PCs) became widely available and virtual reality (VR) was invented.
1. (Summarizing) In what ways did participation in the democracy process in the 1980s reflect our national identity? More and more people were tired of liberal policies and the increased participation of conservative (R) voters led to the election of conservative politicians.
2. (Comparing and Contrasting) How was the Iran-Contra Affair both similar to and different from the Watergate Scandal? The Iran-Contra Affair is similar to the Watergate Scandal in that both involved the misuse of government power and money; The Iran-Contra Affair was different from the Watergate scandal in that Nixon was forced out of office b/c of Watergate, whereas Reagan was never implicated the secret payments.
3. (Evaluating) What contributions did George H. W. Bush make as POTUS? George H.W. Bush presided over the US victory in the Cold War and the Persian Gulf War and made a positive impact on the war on drugs.
4. (Analyzing Information) What role did the US play in ending the Cold War? The US slowed the arms race and participated through the INF Treaty in peace talks with Gorbachev in helping ease Cold War tensions.
5. (Making Predictions) How did the breakup of the Soviet Union present new challenges to the US? Conflicts between the former Soviet-controlled countries began to break out presented new challenges to the US.