Social Science Department
Roosevelt High School
Social Studies Department
The study of History prepares students to live thoughtfully, to work in a wide variety of
professions, and to participate as national and global citizens. Roosevelt High School
Social Science Department offers the following courses that will provide students with
the history skills (research and synthesis, critical reading, careful and clear writing and
speaking) that are vitally important for college success and/or careers in a related field
Did you know about our award winning department?
• 2 National Board Certified Teachers
- 2012 Two National History Fair Finalists
- 2012 Illinois Stock Market Game - 3rd Place
- 2012 Illinois Capitol Challenge Stock Market Game - 1st Place
• 2011 National History Fair Finalist
- 2010 Econ Illinois Outstanding Economic Educator
• 2010 National Stock Market Game – 4th in Nation
• 2009 Illinois Stock Market Game- 1st Place & Three 2nd place
• 2009 CPS Mock Trial Champion
• 2006 Illinois History Teacher of the Year
• 2009-2010 Financial Literacy Program
• Multiple Illinois History Fair finalists.
• Host of Chicago Regional History Fair
• Academic Decathlon
• Immigrant/Refugee Oral History Project
• Mikva Student Election Judge Community Service
• Junior Achievement High School Heroes
• Three Advanced Placement Courses
World Studies (Regular, Honors, ESL, Bilingual)
This course is a survey of world history from the origins of the Earth and its life sustaining qualities to human development, the rise of civilization, the interactions of people and ideas, and the competition for influence and resources. Students will be challenged to consider the role of the social scientist in understanding society from social, geographic, economic, political, and environmental perspectives in preparation for more advanced coursework.
US History (Regular, Honors, ESL, Bilingual)
1.0 credit; Prerequisite: World Studies
This course is a survey of the history of the United States, with emphasis on the time period from 1877 to the present. Students study key historical events, personalities and trends shaping our traditions and future.
Civics/Financial Literacy (Regular, Honors, ESL, Bilingual)
1.0 credit; Prerequisites: World Studies and US History
The first semester of this course (Civics) is designed to immerse students in the rationale and function of the American system of government including the origins of our government, how it operates, and the importance of active participation by all members of society. This course will help students understand how to be a valuable citizen in American society. First, students will learn how their participation in government is important to their own life and community. Students will learn about where the government came from as well as how and why it functions the way it does. It includes the required Public Law 195 exam taken during the first semester.
The second semester (Financial Literacy) takes a practical approach to teaching students how the American financial system operates. Students will learn about basic principles of economics then move on to topics such as budgeting, spending vs. income, and the connection between education and employment opportunities. In addition, students will learn about investing, financial planning, and the value of being an informed consumer to protect their financial lives. This semester includes the Illinois State Consumer Ed requirement.
Honors Law in American Society
1.0 credit; Prerequisite: Civics and consent of the instructor.
In this year long course students will build on ideas established in Civics by examining the American Legal System and participating in activities that exercise principles of American justice. Specifically, students will learn about the functions of the American court system and its connection with protecting the rights of citizens. Students will learn the process of preparing cases for trial as well as how to prepare both written and oral arguments that employs rhetorical skills, logic, and theory of debate. Participation in the Spring Mock Trial Competition is mandatory. Due to the nature of the course some
experience with public speaking is strongly recommended. This course is for senior students who are NOT graduating until the end of second semester.
This course is aimed at helping students understand themselves and others. Important topics include personality development, developmental psychology, the brain, emotions, mental health, psychology as a science, and abnormal psychology.
Mr. Kiser’s Psychology class finishes the year with a project on serial killers, as many students want to go into Psychology and/or Criminal Justice when they graduate. After spending the year studying topics such as parenting styles, identity development, and psychopathy (mental illness/disorder), students read the graphic novel My Friend Dahmer. Students analyze the novel, written by a high school friend of notorious serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer, through a Psychology lens.
AP US History
1.0 credit; Open to all interested and motivated students
This college-level AP course provides students with the analytical skills and in-depth factual knowledge necessary to deal critically with the problems and materials in US History. Students will learn to interpret historical sources, including government documents, newspaper accounts, photographs, political cartoons, charts, and maps. Students will also engage in discussion, debate, essay writing, and project- based creative assignments designed to help them develop the ability to make persuasive arguments supported by evidence. Students are expected to take the Advanced Placement US History test in the spring. NOTE: This course will fulfill a student’s US History requirement, if passed. We will run the class if enough students are interested.
AP Human Geography
1.0 credit: acceptance into course only by recommendation of history department or counselor.
The purpose of the AP Human Geography course is to introduce students to the systematic study of patterns and processes that have shaped human understanding, use, and alteration of the Earth’s surface. Students employ spatial concepts and landscape analysis to examine human social organization and its environmental consequences. They also learn about the methods and tools geographers use intheir science and practice.
The Social Science Department classes participate in the following enrichment activities, competitions
Each year the Law in American Society class competes against other Chicago schools in the citywide Mock Trial Competition. The competition gives students a chance to perform as attorneys as they advocate in real courtrooms in front of real circuit court judges showing off skills, tactics, and knowledge that they have learned in class. In the last 10 years, our teams have finished in the top 5 in the city 6 times, including 1st place team finish and several individual competition winners. Roosevelt is on a great streak, advancing to the championship round every year since 2015!