Anser Charter School

Junior High

The Junior High Crew completes two expeditions for the 2012-2013 School year.

The Dark Continent Expedition

 This year the Social Studies Expedition will be using the African Continent to explore the big ideas and themes of Social Studies using the following guiding questions:

 How does change happen?

  • What is at the heart of conflict?
  • Who owns the land?
  • Is diversity good?
  • Why should we care about the rest of the world?


The Big Ideas we will deeply examine are:


  • Political Dissidence                           
  • Reconciliation
  • Modernism
  • Traditionalism
  • Multiculturalism
  • Colonization
  • Imperialism
  • Ethnocentrism


  • Racism
  • Diversity
  • Economic Investment/Divestment
  • Social Injustice
  • Culture
  • Government
  • Exploration
  • Youth Movements

 We will start the year by exploring “his story” or  “her story” as a way of discovering what history is, how historians work, and who decides what gets recorded and subsequently passed on.  Next, we will be doing an overview of the African continent where students will engage in an independent research project on a specific country, create their masks and develop amazing poetry.  Afterwards we will all come together to look for patterns, similarities and differences between the countries (it’s a big continent!)  From there we will do our first in-depth investigation of South Africa, where we will be analyzing the affects of colonization, comparing and contrasting different forms of resistance, youth movements, and the idea of reconciliation verses retribution. 

 Africa has long been a volatile continent, always changing and reshaping itself.  This has never been truer than within the past few years with the Arab Spring, the conflicts in the Congo and the creation of Southern Sudan.  Our third and fourth quarters will examine these modern day conflicts, and the consequences of the changes.  The wrap up of the year will be The Change Project, where students will work cross-content areas to determine how they “will become the change they wish to see in the world.”  As always, we will continually look at connections close to home and our studies.  We are excited that this year we will be examining and working with our African refugee community.


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