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 Patrick Henry High School

United States History


Instructor Contact Information:

 David Christian Madson, Room #304, 612-668-2000, email through the school or district address

Course Description

This course, required for graduation (see the MN graduation standards), will provide a general overview of American history starting in the mid 1400’s and proceed to modern times. This will be a rigorous college preparatory class.  The class content will be guided by national, state, and district social studies standards.

In addition, students will be exposed to various topics surrounding American history including, but not limited to: 1) reasons for original settlement 2) who was here when the settlers arrived 3) geography of the United States 4) conflict between the settlers, the natives they encountered, the English government, and themselves 5)the Declaration of Independence, the  revolution & 1st government 6) expansion & Manifest Destiny 7) slavery 8) the Civil War and Reconstruction 9) Immigration 10) the Depression 11) WWI & WWII 12) the Cold War 13) Significant figures in American History 14) the Civil rights movement and 15) thematic review of the 50’s, 60’s, 70’s, 80’s & 90’s.

Course Objectives

Students will gain general knowledge of the above mentioned areas of study, as well as, develop or improve skills including critical thinking, analysis, historiography, research, formation of argument based on historical evidence.  

What you should bring to class (Required Texts and Other Supplies)

§  In addition to the McDougal Littell text titled “The Americans”, we will be using a wide variety or resources and textbooks for this class. Titles, texts, and readings will be introduced at the time of their use.  Note: Students will have access to a classroom set of text books and, at this time, do not need to check one out from the Media Center.

  • Students need to have a dedicated notebook for this class, writing instrument, highlighter and any other supplies a junior in high school should have.

Grading and Assignments

  • The class will offer a variety of assessments including classwork, homework, group work, projects, and other miscellaneous opportunities for credit.
  • Grading Scale:  Grades will be tabulated using a 90%, 80%, 70% scoring system as follows: 


The grading scale is as follows:

A  =  100%-90%


B  =    90%-80%

C  =   80%-70%

D  =   70%-60%

F  =   59.9% & below 




  • Late Work – All late work must be arranged in advance or a point deduction will be assessed.  
  • Extra Credit – Finish the regular work, generally, extra credit is not offered.   

Class Policies/Expectations

  • Don’t be a jerk.
  • No hate language.
  • Treat me with respect and I GUARANTEE you will be afforded the same treatment.
  • All school wide policies apply in the class room. All on time expectations, all dress standards and all electronic device standards will be enforced.
  • No passes in the first and last 10-minutes of class.
  • If you are caught cheating you will receive a zero for the assignment and if you are copying someone else’s work they will also receive a zero.


  • I can be reached on-line through the parent/student portal via our school web site. I can also be reached by phone; the number is 612-668-2000. I will return your call, in most cases, within 24-hours, unless you call on Friday, then I will return your call on the following Monday.

Academic Support

  • Tutorials – By appointment.