• 8th Grade Advanced US History

    Buffalo Academy for Visual and Performing Arts



    Teacher: Mrs. Swiech

    Room 256

    Email: jswiech@buffaloschools.org

    Phone Number: 816-4220

    **Email is the best way to reach me and I make every effort to respond within 24 hours.


    Goal:  This class is designed to give 8th grade students an opportunity to achieve high school credit for the United States History and Government Regents examination and to help prepare them for AP or college level classes in high school.  In order to receive credit and prepare for high school classes, it is recommended that students maintain an 85% average throughout the course and achieve this score on the exam in June.



    • 1 1 inch binder any color or design
    • Dividers
    • 4 packages of paper
    • 4-5 Highlighters
    • Blue or Black ink pens
    • Review book money (roughly $14). This will be due when 2019 review books are released.



    • 90% Tests, Quizzes, Essays and Writing Assignments
    • 10% Homework, Daily Quizzes, Class Participation


    Class Policies

    • Students must be on time for class (in your seat with your binder!) when the bell rings or I will issue a detention.
    • I will deduct a 10% penalty for every day an assignment is late. After I grade and hand back an assignment, the highest grade you can receive is 50% of the original grade.
    • Please use the bathroom between classes.
    • Homework and class assignments will be posted on Google Classroom and the link will be on my website by Sunday night. If you are absent for any reason, please check the classroom and email me with any questions.
    • If you are absent for a test or quiz you must arrange a time to make up this test. I am available after school. THIS INCLUDES ALL FIELD TRIPS, PERFORMANCES, ETC.  Do not ask me to go to finish work in another teacher’s class. 
    • If you are experiencing any difficulties with my class, please come and speak with me directly. Do not wait for a problem to grow. 
    • I reserve the right to adjust any policies or procedures as the situation warrants.



    • S. History is a chronological survey of American history utilizing primary and secondary sources. 
    • Topics will be covered by periods of time, with a larger test given at the conclusion of each period. The periods are:
      • Unit 1: 1607-1763 Geography of the United States, Colonial Period, and French and Indian War
      • Unit 2: 1763-1824 American Revolution, Constitutional Convention, Presidency of George Washington. Early westward expansion, including the Louisiana Purchase
      • Unit 3a: 1801-1850 increase in suffrage, the market revolution, transition from Founding Fathers to James K. Polk, emergence of political parties.
      • Unit 3b: 1848-1865 Manifest Destiny, slavery as a moral crisis, growing sectionalism, road to the Civil War, Civil War, and the philosophies of each side.
      • Unit 4: 1865-1877 Reconstruction
      • Unit 5: 1865-1920 Domestic Events: Rise of Big Business, Robber Barons vs Captains of Industry, development of Labor Unions, and the government’s response, the Progressive Movement, Progressive presidents, and urbanization.
      • Unit 6: 1920-1945 Return to Isolationism, Roaring Twenties, Great Depression, America trying to stay out of WWII, WWII, and the atomic bomb.
      • Unit 7: 1945-1991 Foreign Events Cold War, US Presidents, and major events such as Korean War, Vietnam, and the end of the Cold War
      • Unit 8: 1950s-1990s Cultural Shifts: 1950s-conformity, 1960s-turmoil and change, 1970s-trend towards Conservatism, 1980s-Reagan and the end of the Cold War, and 1990s-world after the Cold War/Terrorism. Civil Rights Movement.
      • Unit 9: 1991-Present Persian Gulf War, Tensions in the Middle East, America’s Changing role in the world, terrorism, 9/11 attacks, and the balance of civil liberties and safety.



    • A Pre-test will be given within the first weeks of school. This will provide a baseline for the United States Regents exam administered in June.
    • After each unit, a test will be given that includes relevant vocabulary and Regents-style questions.
    • Writing assessments will be given in class and timed. This will occur for each unit.
    • You are responsible to check Infinite Campus and bring any issues to my attention.


    In Conclusion:


    You are only limited by your thoughts. Never accept mediocrity. If you put your name on something make sure it is the best you can do. You only get one chance to do