The RHP History Department offers a dynamic curriculum that provides students with the tools to understand and navigate an ever changing and complex world. We collaborate with the English Department in taking a cross-curricular approach to prepare students in areas of critical thinking, reading, research and writing.
The 6th grade social studies class focuses on environmental, political, economic and social geographic trends and how they impact the way people organize themselves in ancient and current times. Seventh grade takes a case study approach and exposes students to the wide breadth of cultures, geographies and current issues of the world. In 8th grade, students are exposed to the history of the United States by analyzing historical events through the key social, political, intellectual, cultural and economic (SPICE) events and trends in American history from the Revolution to the dropping of the atomic bomb. Each year, critical writing and thinking skills are developed in preparation for the rigorous courses at the Upper School level.
In Upper School, four years are required in History and the Social Sciences. The 9th grade begins by studying World History I, a survey course from ancient Rome to the Enlightenment with an investigation of major world religions. In addition, students study the ancient civilizations of China, Africa, Latin America, and Asia. World History II in 10th grade is a study of world history from the French Revolution to the present and focuses on the major "-isms" of the 19th and 20th centuries. Advanced Placement European History can be taken in 10th grade, preparing students to take the AP exam. In 11th grade, United States History takes center stage. A.P. United States History can be taken junior year upon teacher recommendation. In 12th grade, seniors take Government and Economics. The Government class studies the origins of American government, the branches of government, political parties and current political trends. The Economics class addresses the basic concepts of macro and microeconomics. Each year, students are required to complete a research paper in increasing depth and analysis that culminates in a senior project.
History is no longer the mere memorization of names, dates, and facts, but rather the study of human interaction and human achievement. As students understand the world around them, they will have the skills and knowledge to shape the world around them.
History Department Chair