Social Studies

Social Studies includes several courses at AFA including, World History, U.S. History, Economics, Political Science and Geography. The state of Minnesota requires that a high school student complete 3.5 credits of Social Studies for graduation.


At AFA students gain a variety of academic skills, such as research, writing, reading comprehension, compare and contrasting opposing viewpoints, map skills, among many others through the different courses. Social Studies lessons are interdisciplinary that involve other subjects and the goal is to promote an awareness of other cultures, societies and history of people throughout the world. Students will also gain civic skills and responsibilities of a citizen throughout the variety of courses offered.



This course is an introductory level course that covers topics in both micro and macro Economics. Students will develop skills that will help them in Economics, such as budgeting, reading charts and graphs, using data to make informed decisions and calculating interest. Students will use real world simulations to increase their awareness and experience in Economics, such as developing a product to sell for a profit. Students will also explore Economics from a government level by studying different economics systems and their impact on a country.

This Political Science course is worth 0.5 credits, split into two quarters and will focus on the American Government and its interaction with other countries.  This course will study the origins of government, the constitution, operations of government, and the voting process.  This course is designed to be challenging and a preparatory course for higher education.  Therefore, students will be asked to develop opinions and support their opinions with facts and evidence.  Students will follow current events and focus on the 2016 presidential election.  Students will also be required to volunteer within a campaign or a get out the vote drive.

History Through Film (Friday Class):
History through Film is a class that uses Hollywood films, based on a historical event or figure, as a guide to learn about the background of the event. Students will view several movies throughout the quarter and study the historical context of the movie. Students will compare and contrast the events and people depicted in the movie to the actual history. Students will write a movie review for each movie that discusses the historical accuracy of the movie, the overall entertainment value and rate the movie on a scale. Students will also explore the positives and negatives of movies that are historically inaccurate and develop an opinionated essay to support their claim.

Humanities (US History Through Literature & Writing and World History Through Literature & Writing): 
Humanities is an integrated Language Arts and Social Studies Course. Students in Humanities will study history through interacting with works of art and a wide variety of texts, including novels, primary and secondary documents, textbooks, and various types of technology. Integrating the arts, students will explore expressions of individuals and societies at various points in time. In their quest to understand culture, history, and themselves, students will gather information through reading, express themselves through writing and the arts, work collaboratively with their peers, and present their understanding as historians and artists.

Psychology (Friday Class):
Psychology is the systematic study of individual human behavior and experience. The purpose of this course is to introduce the student to the content, terminology, methodology, and application of the discipline. This is an introductory class and students will study the senses, motivation, personality, experimentation, memory, consciousness, as well as how the brain learns information. Students will learn how to interpret statistics, conduct an experiment, and participate in activities that highlight the different topics of study.

Social Studies Recovery with Mr. Dusty (Friday Class):
Social Studies Recovery will focus on independent based projects. In the class students will learn skills such as researching methods, thinking and writing like a historian, use of primary documents, public speaking, presenting and many other skills. Depending on the student’s need, we will select a credit recovery project, design the topic to fit the subject and I will guide the students through their project with small one on one instruction. Some credit project options can be done in class while others will require time and effort outside of the classroom hours.

US History & Geography: 
U.S. History is a full year mandatory course worth 1 credit. Over the year students will explore American History through multiple perspectives. The course will incorporate source materials that reflect different viewpoints including Women, Immigrants, Native Americans, African Americans, Asian Americans and others. The course begins by looking at America prior to 1492 colonization and leads up to the present day. We will focus on the development of historical thinking skills (chronological reasoning, comparing and analyzing, crafting historical arguments using historical evidence, and interpreting historical narratives). Typical course activities include map work, class debates, research into historical events of significance, and creation of artifacts or writings.

World History & Geography: 
World History is a full year course worth 1 credit that and will examine a variety of realms: Afro-Eurasia, Latin America, Early rise of complex societies, 5 major religions, geography,ect. I truly believe that examining our world in relation to diverse perspectives is crucial,especially because our world is becoming increasingly interconnected economically, politically, and socially. The hope is that each of you will obtain a solid foundation in content as well as skills in researching, note taking, analyzing primary and secondary sources, making inferences, generalizing, drawing conclusions, and presenting knowledge. Ideally, you will gain an understanding of the integration of political, economic, philosophical, social and geographical elements in world history.