Grade 7 Social Studies Curriculum

  • American History

    The course content traces the human experience in the United States from pre-Columbian times until the Civil War, with a focus on significant people, events, and locations. Grade 7 Social Studies is arranged chronologically and incorporates geography as well as economic, social, and political trends.

    Units of Study
    Social Sciences and Geography
    Native American Cultures
    Colonial America
    American Independence
    U.S. Constitution
    Federalist Era
    Jefferson Era
    Industrial Revolution
    Age of Jackson
    Westward Expansion (mid-1800s)
    Reform Movements (mid-1800s)
    Civil War

    7th Grade Social Studies Themes:

    1. Individual Development and Cultural Identity
    2. Development, Movement, and Interaction of Cultures
    3. Time, Continuity, and Change
    4. Geography, Humans, and the Environment
    5. Development and Transformation of Social Structures
    6. Power, Authority, and Governance
    7. Civic Ideals and Practices
    8. Creation, Expansion, and Interaction of Economic Systems
    9. Science, Technology, and Innovation
    10. Global Connections and Exchange


    7th Grade Social Studies Practices:

    A. Gathering, Interpreting and Using Evidence 
    1. Define and frame questions about the United States that can be answered by gathering, interpreting, and using evidence.
    2. Identify, select, and evaluate evidence about events from diverse sources (including written documents, works of art, photographs, charts and graphs, artifacts, oral traditions, and other primary and secondary sources).
    3. Analyze evidence in terms of historical context, content, authorship, point of view, purpose, and format; identify bias; explain the role of bias and audience in presenting arguments or evidence.
    4. Describe and analyze arguments of others, with support.
    5. Make inferences and draw general conclusions from evidence.
    6. Recognize an argument and identify supporting evidence related to a specific social studies topic. Examine arguments related to a specific social studies topic from multiple perspectives. Recognize that the perspective of the argument’s author shapes the selection of evidence used to support it.

     B. Chronological Reasoning 

    1. Identify how events are related chronologically to one another in time, and explain the ways in which earlier ideas and events may influence subsequent ideas and events.
    2. Employ mathematical skills to measure time by years, decades, centuries, and millennia; to calculate time from the fixed points of the calendar system (B.C.E. and C.E.); and to interpret the data presented in time lines.
    3. Identify causes and effects, using examples from current events, grade-level content, and historical events.
    4. Identify and analyze the relationship between multiple causes and multiple effects.
    5. Distinguish between long-term and immediate causes and effects of an event from current events or history.
    6. Recognize, analyze, and evaluate dynamics of historical continuity and change over periods of time.
    7. Recognize that changing the periodization affects the historical narrative.
    8. Identify patterns of continuity and change as they relate to larger historical process and themes.
    9. Identify models of historical periodization that historians use to categorize events.

     C. Comparison and Contextualization 

    1. Identify a region of colonial North America or the early United States by describing multiple characteristics common to places within it, and then identify other similar regions (inside or outside the continental United States) with similar characteristics.
    2. Identify and categorize multiple perspectives on a given historical experience.
    3. Describe, compare, and evaluate multiple historical developments within the United States in various chronological and geographical contexts.
    4. Identify how the relationship between geography, economics, and history helps to define a context for events in the study of the United States.
    5. Connect historical developments to specific circumstances of time and place and to broader regional, national, or global processes.
    6. Understand the roles that periodization and region play in developing the comparison of colonial settlements in North America. Identify general characteristics that can be employed to conduct comparative analyses of case studies in the early history of the United States.

     D. Geographic Reasoning 

    1. Use location terms and geographic representations, such as maps, photographs, satellite images, and models to describe where places in early United States history were in relation to each other, to describe connections among places, and to evaluate effectively the benefits of particular places for purposeful activities.
    2. Distinguish human activities and human-made features from “environments” (natural events or physical features—land, air, and water—that are not directly made by humans) and describe the relationship between human activities and the environment.
    3. Identify and analyze how environments affect human activities and how human activities affect physical environments in the United States.
    4. Recognize and analyze how characteristics (cultural, economic, and physical-environmental) of regions affect the history of the United States.
    5. Characterize and analyze changing interconnections between places and regions.
    6. Describe the spatial organization of place, considering the historical, social, political, and economic implication of that organization. Describe how boundaries and definition of location are historically constructed.

     E. Economic and Economic Systems 

    1. Explain how economic decisions affect the well-being of individuals, businesses, and society; evaluate alternative approaches or solutions to economic issues in terms of benefits and costs for different groups of people.
    2. Identify examples of buyers and sellers in product, labor, and financial markets.
    3. Describe the role that competition has in the determination of prices and wages; identify other factors that help to determine prices.
    4. Examine the roles of institutions, such as joint stock companies, banks, and the government in the development of the United States economy before the Civil War.
    5. Examine data on the state of employment, unemployment, inflation, total production, income, and economic growth in the economy.