Social Studies

Global citizenship demands an understanding of and respect for traditions other than your own.  The diverse and international nature of TJ’s student body brings a range of cultural perspectives to our social-studies classrooms.  Only by studying patterns of human behavior throughout time can we understand our present world and become informed, respectful, and productive citizens of an increasingly interconnected global society.

The social-studies curriculum begins with a specially designed class for seventh-graders: U.S. government and juvenile law in the first semester, world geography and economics in the second. In the eighth and ninth grades, students take a two-year survey course in world history. The eighth-grade course traces the developments of all regions of the world from the time of the earliest hominids through the fifteenth century. The ninth-grade course picks up the story in the early modern period and continues to the present. All students are required to take AP U.S. History, and the department offers two additional elective courses – AP Comparative Government and AP Macro and Microeconomics.

In all of your social-studies classes, you can expect to be actively engaged, absorbing facts from the assignment and discussing your opinions and interpretation. Frequent role-play exercises, debates, and simulations are a regular feature of these classes. You will write frequently, sharpening your ability to present your ideas, ultimately learning to write formal research papers for your AP courses.  Visiting local and regional museums and landmarks allows you to learn firsthand about the who, where, when, and why of history.