Course Syllabus

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  Course Summary

In this course, we will study two main concepts: Geography and culture.

Geography is the study of land and water features, and how they affect where people live and move.

Culture is the overall way of life of a group of people. It can relate to so many different categories of life, such as music, art, language, religion, food, and many others. 

  Course Teacher

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Instructor: Dr. Christopher Keefer

Education: B.S. in Education, Baylor University

                         Master of Divinity, Luther Rice Seminary

                         Doctor of Ministry, Gateway Seminary

Email Address: keeferc@castleberryisd.net

Classroom Phone Number: 817-252-2270

 

  Course Materials

Canvas 

Various websites that will be provided to you, such as www.cia.gov

  Classroom Expectations (In-Person and Virtual)

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Expectations:

1. We will treat others the way we wish to be treated ourselves.

2. Raise your hand (or signal electronically) before speaking. This isn't a game show.

3. Bring your materials ready to learn. Charge Chromebooks.

4. Get to class on time whenever possible.

5. Ask for help. I'm smart, but I cannot read minds. 

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Texas 6th Grade Social Studies TEKS (Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills), as adopted in 2019.

(1) History. The student understands that historical events influence contemporary events. The student is expected to:

(A) trace characteristics of various contemporary societies in regions that resulted from historical events or factors such as colonization, immigration, and trade; and

(B) analyze the historical background of various contemporary societies to evaluate relationships between past conflicts and current conditions.

(2) History. The student understands the influences of individuals and groups from various cultures on various historical and contemporary societies. The student is expected to:

(A) identify and describe the historical influence of individuals or groups on various contemporary societies; and

(B) describe the social, political, economic, and cultural contributions of individuals and groups from various societies, past and present.

(3) Geography. The student understands the factors that influence the locations and characteristics of locations of various contemporary societies on maps and/or globes. The student is expected to:

(A) identify and explain the geographic factors responsible for patterns of population in places and regions;

(B) explain ways in which human migration influences the character of places and regions;

(C) identify and locate major physical and human geographic features such as landforms, water bodies, and urban centers of various places and regions; and

(D) identify the location of major world countries for each of the world regions.

(4) Geography. The student understands how geographic factors influence the economic development and political relationships of societies. The student is expected to:

(A) explain the geographic factors responsible for the location of economic activities in places and regions; and

(B) identify geographic factors such as location, physical features, transportation corridors and barriers, and distribution of natural resources that influence a society's political relationships.

(5) Geography. The student understands the impact of interactions between people and the physical environment on the development and conditions of places and regions. The student is expected to:

(A) describe ways people have been impacted by physical processes such as earthquakes and climate;

(B) identify and analyze ways people have adapted to the physical environment in various places and regions; and

(C) identify and analyze ways people have modified the physical environment such as mining, irrigation, and transportation infrastructure.

(6) Economics. The student understands the factors of production in a society's economy. The student is expected to:

(A) describe ways in which the factors of production (natural resources, labor, capital, and entrepreneurs) influence the economies of various contemporary societies;

(B) identify problems that may arise when one or more of the factors of production is in relatively short supply; and

(C) explain the impact of the distribution of resources on international trade and economic interdependence among and within societies.

(7) Economics. The student understands the various ways in which people organize economic systems. The student is expected to:

(A) compare ways in which various societies organize the production and distribution of goods and services;

(B) compare and contrast free enterprise, socialist, and communist economies in various contemporary societies, including the benefits of the U.S. free enterprise system; and

(C) understand the importance of ethics in maintaining a functional free enterprise system.

(8) Economics. The student understands categories of economic activities and the data used to measure a society's economic level. The student is expected to:

(A) define and give examples of agricultural, retail, manufacturing (goods), and service industries; and

(B) describe levels of economic development of various societies using indicators such as life expectancy, gross domestic product (GDP), GDP per capita, and literacy.

(9) Government. The student understands the concepts of limited and unlimited governments. The student is expected to:

(A) describe and compare examples of limited and unlimited governments such as constitutional (limited) and totalitarian (unlimited);

(B) identify reasons for limiting the power of government; and

(C) identify and describe examples of human rights abuses by limited or unlimited governments such as the oppression of religious, ethnic, and political groups.

(10) Government. The student understands various ways in which people organize governments. The student is expected to:

(A) identify and give examples of governments with rule by one, few, or many;

(B) compare ways in which various societies such as China, Germany, India, and Russia organize government and how they function; and

(C) identify historical origins of democratic forms of government such as Ancient Greece.

(11) Citizenship. The student understands that the nature of citizenship varies among societies. The student is expected to:

(A) describe and compare roles and responsibilities of citizens in various contemporary societies, including the United States; and

(B) explain how opportunities for citizens to participate in and influence the political process vary among various contemporary societies.

(12) Citizenship. The student understands the relationship among individual rights, responsibilities, duties, and freedoms in societies with representative governments. The student is expected to:

(A) identify and explain the duty of civic participation in societies with representative governments; and

(B) explain relationships among rights, responsibilities, and duties in societies with representative governments.

(13) Culture. The student understands the similarities and differences within and among cultures in various world societies. The student is expected to:

(A) identify and describe common traits that define cultures and culture regions;

(B) define a multicultural society;

(C) analyze the experiences and contributions of diverse groups to multicultural societies; and

(D) identify and explain examples of conflict and cooperation between and among cultures.

(14) Culture. The student understands that all societies have basic institutions in common even though the characteristics of these institutions may differ. The student is expected to:

(A) identify institutions basic to all societies, including government, economic, educational, and religious institutions;

(B) compare characteristics of institutions in various contemporary societies; and

(C) analyze the efforts and activities institutions use to sustain themselves over time.

(15) Culture. The student understands relationships that exist among world cultures. The student is expected to:

(A) identify and describe means of cultural diffusion such as trade, travel, and war;

(B) identify and describe factors that influence cultural change such as improvements in communication, transportation, and economic development;

(C) analyze the impact of improved communication technology among cultures; and

(D) identify the impact of cultural diffusion on individuals and world societies.

(16) Culture. The student understands the relationship that exists between the arts and the societies in which they are produced. The student is expected to:

(A) explain the relationships that exist between societies and their architecture, art, music, and literature;

(B) describe ways in which contemporary issues influence creative expressions; and

(C) identify examples of art, music, and literature that convey universal themes such as religion, justice, and the passage of time.

(17) Culture. The student understands the relationships among religion, philosophy, and culture. The student is expected to:

(A) explain the relationship among religious ideas, philosophical ideas, and cultures; and

(B) explain the significance of religious holidays and observances such as Christmas, Easter, Ramadan, the annual hajj, Yom Kippur, Rosh Hashanah, Diwali, and Vaisakhi in various contemporary societies.

(18) Science, technology, and society. The student understands the influences of science and technology on contemporary societies. The student is expected to:

(A) identify examples of scientific discoveries, technological innovations, and scientists and inventors that have shaped the world;

(B) explain how resources, economic factors, and political decisions affect the use of technology; and

(C) make predictions about future social, political, economic, cultural, and environmental impacts that may result from future scientific discoveries and technological innovations.

(19) Social studies skills. The student applies critical-thinking skills to organize and use information acquired through established research methodologies from a variety of valid sources, including technology. The student is expected to:

(A) differentiate between, locate, and use valid primary and secondary sources such as oral, print, and visual material and artifacts to acquire information about various world cultures;

(B) analyze information by sequencing, categorizing, identifying cause-and-effect relationships, comparing, contrasting, finding the main idea, summarizing, making generalizations and predictions, and drawing inferences and conclusions;

(C) organize and interpret information from outlines, reports, databases, and visuals, including graphs, charts, timelines, and maps; and

(D) identify different points of view about an issue or current topic.

(20) Social studies skills. The student uses geographic tools to collect, analyze, and interpret data. The student is expected to:

(A) answer geographic questions, including: Where is it located? Why is it there? What is significant about its location? How is its location related to the location of other people, places, and environments? Using latitude and longitude, where is it located?;

(B) pose and answer questions about geographic distributions and patterns for various world regions and countries shown on maps, graphs, and charts;

(C) compare various world regions and countries using data from maps, graphs, and charts; and

(D) create and interpret regional sketch maps, thematic maps, graphs, and charts depicting aspects such as population, disease, and economic activities of various world regions and countries.

(21) Social studies skills. The student communicates in written, oral, and visual forms. The student is expected to:

(A) use social studies terminology correctly;

(B) incorporate main and supporting ideas in verbal and written communication based on research;

(C) express ideas orally based on research and experiences;

(D) create written and visual material such as journal entries, reports, graphic organizers, outlines, and bibliographies based on research; and

(E) use effective written communication skills, including proper citations to avoid plagiarism.

(22) Social studies skills. The student uses problem-solving and decision-making skills, working independently and with others. The student is expected to use problem-solving and decision-making processes to identify a problem, gather information, list and consider options, consider advantages and disadvantages, choose and implement a solution, and evaluate the effectiveness of the solution.

Order of Curriculum:

1st 6 weeks: Introductions, Geography overview, continents and oceans, Culture overview, foundational vocabulary

2nd 6 weeks: Europe geography and culture

3rd 6 weeks: Africa geography and culture, project

4th 6 weeks: Asia and Australia geography and culture, project

5th 6 weeks: South America geography and culture, rain forest project

6th 6 weeks: North America geography and culture