The goal of the Social Studies Program is to have students learn how to become active, responsible participants of their communities, committed to the fundamental values of principles of democracy. Students will:

  • Develop a sense of chronology and the complex thinking to identify patterns of events.

  • Develop a geographical understanding of the world and the cultures of people around the world.

  • Gain insight into what power is, how it is legitimized through governance, and what their roles and responsibilities are as members of society.

  • Learn to respect and value a diversity of cultures and to recognize a rich diversity of human expression.

  • Learn that as members of the global community, it is important to care about what happens in other places.


U.S. History I (9th Grade)

As aligned with the Massachusetts History and Social Sciences Frameworks and the Common Core Standards, this course will examine U.S. History from 1763 to World War I. As part of this course, students will investigate the origins of the Constitution and American democracy and the challenges the new nation faced postwar. Other units of study include the Civil War, westward expansion, immigration, and industrialization. The course will conclude by examining the political, social, and economic changes the U.S. experienced during the Progressive Era and U.S. entry into World War I. 


U.S. History II (10th Grade)

As aligned with the Massachusetts History and Social Studies Frameworks and the Common Core Standards, this course will chronologically examine American History following the end of World War I. The course will review the impact of the Roaring 20s, World War II, and economic growth and consumerism postwar, The course will conclude by examining U.S. involvement in global affairs and in depth look into the Civil Rights Movement.


Advanced United States History I and II (9th & 10th Grade)

The topics and events that are covered in the advanced class are the same as those that are covered in the non-advanced classes. However the review of the topics and events will be more in depth, require critical thinking, debates, and the examination of primary and secondary sources. Students can expect to work at a more rigorous pace, and are assigned content related outside reading and papers.

Citizenship and Modern Government (11th & 12th Grade)

The focus of this course will be to prepare students to participate in exercising their political responsibilities as thoughtful and informed citizens. Civics provides a basis for understanding the rights and responsibilities for being an American citizen and a framework for competent and responsible participation. Instruction will focus on the historical development of government and political systems, including; the United States Constitution; Federal, State and local government structure;and the rights and responsibilities of citizenship. Students will actively investigate local, state and national issues, read and participate in discussions, and develop informed arguments through a variety of writing assignments and projects.


Modern America and Global Affairs (11th & 12th Grade)

This course is an indepth study of American history following World War II through present day. Students examine events, policies and themes that have shaped the nation during the 20th and 21st centuries. Connections between present day events and the past are emphasized as we look to our future.


World Culture and Geography (11th Grade)

This is a survey course of today’s world organized around the five key geographic themes: location, place, region, human-environment interaction, and movement. Units include: the United States and Canada, Latin America, Europe, North Africa and Southwest Asia, Africa South of the Sahara, Southern Asia, and East Asia. The course will help students make the connection between geography and current events while understanding the world’s people, places, and environments.


Psychology (11th & 12th Grade)

The course is study of scientific psychology and the many diverse fields within psychology. It is based on scientific methodology which gets to the root of how we know what we know both about ourselves and others. Units include: the biological basis for behavior, child and adolescent development, learning, development, theories of personality, psychological disorders, and therapies.

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Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School

80 Locust Street,

Northampton, Ma 01060

Phone: 413-587-1414

Fax: 413-587-1406

Email: info@smithtec.org

Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex,gender identity, disability, religion or sexual orientation.