If students continue to apply these basic writing skills, they are likely to earn 3 or 4 out of the seven total points for the Document Based Question.
In this post, we will explore one of these points students will be looking to earn to help their chances at passing the APUSH exam this May: the Contextualization point.
The redesign has brought a great deal of uncertainty and confusion amongst APUSH teachers.
In many ways, we are all “rookie” teachers, as all of us have the challenge of implementing fundamental curricular and skills-based changes into our classrooms.
Placing this historical background right at the beginning sets the stage for the argument that will occur in the body of the essay, and is consistent with expectations many English teachers have in how to write an introduction paragraph.
I explain contextualization to students by using the example of Star Wars.
Putting events into context is something I always thought was important, but now that the College Board explicitly has established the skill, it has forced me to be more proactive in creating lessons and assignments that allow students to utilize this way of thinking.
[bctt tweet=”Contextualization is a critical historical thinking skill featured in the newly redesigned course.”] The place that contextualization is most directly relevant on the actual AP exam itself is the Document Based Question.
Often times, students find history difficult or boring because they don’t see connections between different historical time periods and the world they live in today.
They assume that events occur in a vacuum, and don’t realize that the historical context is critical in helping explain people’s beliefs and points of view in that period of time.