GT American Studies makes and teaches history

GT+American+Studies+teachers+Emily+Griffin+%28L%29+and+Swapna+Gardner+%28R%29+instruct+their+students+in+the+library.+The+class+is+the+first+of+it%27s+kind+on+campus+with+GT+students+getting+the+ability+to+continue+in+the+program+as+juniors.
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GT American Studies makes and teaches history

GT American Studies teachers Emily Griffin (L) and Swapna Gardner (R) instruct their students in the library. The class is the first of it's kind on campus with GT students getting the ability to continue in the program as juniors.

GT American Studies teachers Emily Griffin (L) and Swapna Gardner (R) instruct their students in the library. The class is the first of it's kind on campus with GT students getting the ability to continue in the program as juniors.

Provided by Urja Joshi

GT American Studies teachers Emily Griffin (L) and Swapna Gardner (R) instruct their students in the library. The class is the first of it's kind on campus with GT students getting the ability to continue in the program as juniors.

Provided by Urja Joshi

Provided by Urja Joshi

GT American Studies teachers Emily Griffin (L) and Swapna Gardner (R) instruct their students in the library. The class is the first of it's kind on campus with GT students getting the ability to continue in the program as juniors.

Lucas Barr, Editor-in-chief

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GT American Studies is making it’s district debut on campus this school year. The new course mixes AP United States History and AP English Language and Composition in a double blocked class that covers “the development of the United States through the integration” of many studies and “the philosophical foundation of American thought.”

“I’m looking forward to cultivating the students interest and things they haven’t learned about before, things that we skim over in history that are more cultural, so art and literature, and even current events,” teacher Emily Griffin said. “Seeing the kids every day, it’ll be infinitely an adjustment because we have to be more prepared on our end, because we have lessons every day rather than every other day. But it’s really fun and create some more like family environment within the class.”

English teacher Swapna Gardner is teaching AP Language in the context of history, and is teaching the course along with Griffin.

“We’re doing like the backbone of the course is U.S. history, so we’re going chronological order, but we’re also studying the rhetoric that happens at the time as well as people talking back to the past as well,” Gardner said. “One of our big questions for the year is what the American experience is, and what it was when we started the nation, and how it has changed or evolved over the course of time.”

For both teachers, it’s the first time they’ve taught a course with combined subjects. 

“A lot of people who do teach those say that of the social studies and English combinations, this is the best one just because they fall in line pretty well,” Gardner said. “With AP Lang, we might structure it differently just based on the skill that you need. With humanities we’ll do it like historically what was going on, so you’ll get a different idea of what the rhetorical situation is.”

Junior Urja Joshi is excited for the chance to continue the Gifted and Talented Program after completing GT AP Humanities last year.

“I think in this class, especially because it’s the first year of the program, we will have a little bit of input and like what the class does, and they’ll continue to implement the humanities idea of Skills Based Grading,” Joshi said. “I feel like it will be a little less stressful, because in one class, you only have like homework for that one classroom instead of having homework for AP Lang and history. With this class, the curriculums have AP Language and AP US History align really well.”