Extra Credit

Every term, each student may choose to submit one extra credit assignment.  All extra credit assignments will be submitted on class blog (see blog for instructions for posting).  The assignments will be reflective and often ask students to revisit work from earlier in the term.  In order to receive maximum extra credit, students should fully answer the question, demonstrate genuine reflection, and write in concision and clarity.  Each extra credit is worth up to 2 percentage points on the term grade. 

Term 1 
Assignment for 9th grade World History, 10th grade Modern World History, and 12th grade Political Science:
Choose a specific experience from this term in which you think you demonstrated a growth mindset.  In 1-2 paragraphs, reflect on that experience:

·     Describe the experience or assignment

·     Did you receive any feedback during this experience? (on an assignment, from peers, etc?)

·     How did you demonstrate a growth mindset?

·     How did the growth mindset improve your learning?

Term 2
Assignment for 12th grade Political Science:
In a 1-2 paragraph response, reflect on the following question:

How has this course shaped your understanding of and interaction with presidential politics in the U.S.?

Assignment  for 9th grade World History and 10th grade Modern World History:
Choose a writing assignment from this term in which we used formative assessment (you did several drafts of the assignment, during which time you received feedback from teachers and peers, before submitting a final product to be graded).  In 1-2 paragraphs, reflect on your growth as a result of the formative assessment:
  • How many drafts did you complete?
  • What were the sources of your feedback?
  • What were the most common types of feedback that you received?
  • How did you address that feedback in your later drafts?
  • How will you prevent similar mistakes in your future writing?
  • Give one specific example from the drafts of the assignment in which you improved on an aspect of your writing because of formative assessment.  
Term 3 Extra Credit
Assignment for 9th grade World History 
Consider any two units from the year, listed below.  In a 1-2 paragraph response, draw a connection between the two units you choose and the Collision unit on which we are currently working.  Your response should address a specific topic (connections that are political, social, religious, philosophical, economic etc.) and be supported by specific evidence from each unit.  Please post your response to the blog and label the post for 9th grade World History class. 
     Belief Systems
     Classical World
     Medieval World
     Renaissance and Reformation

Assignment for 10th grade Modern World History
Consider any two units from the year, listed below.  In a 1-2 paragraph response, draw a connection between the two units you choose and the World War II unit on which we are currently working.  Your response should address a specific topic (connections that are political, social, religious, philosophical, economic etc.) and be supported by specific evidence from each unit.  Please post your response to the blog and label the post for 10th grade Modern World History class. 

     Industrial Revolution
     Nationalist Movements
     World War I
     Interwar Totalitarianism
     World War II 

Term 4 Extra Credit

Assignment for 10th grade Modern World History 
Write one paragraph responding to the response below, using information from throughout the course.   Be sure to include an argumentative topic sentence, specific evidence, and well-constructed analysis.

What defines global dominance in the modern world?  

Assignment for 9th grade World History
Write one paragraph responding to the response below, using information from throughout the course. Be sure to include an argumentative topic sentence, specific evidence, and well-constructed analysis.

Compare Europe in the 18th and 19th centuries to any other region in the world that we have studied during any time period.  What does this comparison suggest about regional and/or global dominance? 


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  2. Extra Credit -- 10th Grade World History

    This term, one of the assignments that encouraged me to use a growth mind set was the Writing Workshop on the Industrial Revolution. This project consisted on improving our writing skills through the application of our history knowledge on the Industrial Revolution. The Workshop was a two-day assignment, which took place both in class and at home, where students came up with a thesis about the Industrial Revolution and created and essay outline in addition to a body paragraph that revolved around this thesis. Due to my placement in Group 3, which consists on independent work along with peer support and scarce teacher help, I found the project challenging and hence I had to rely on a growth mind set in order to overcome the difficulties that the workshop presented.

    The most demanding part of the project was receiving only peer editing since each student has a different way of editing and we received no teacher feedback. On one hand, Meggie and Lamia edited my paragraphs differently and therefore, I had to combine the most relevant feedback of each student in order to improve my paragraph. In addition, I am used to receiving abundant and concise teacher feedback however, in this projected I only depended on my peer’s feedback and my own feedback.

    I demonstrated a growth mind set throughout the workshop by accepting the challenge of the project and using other's criticism to improve. For instance, someone with a fixed mind set would have felt threatened by the feedback that the students provided instead of using the criticism as a tool to ameliorate the paragraph. Also, I was able to persist on the face of setbacks, such as not having enough analysis, which allowed me to see effort as the path to mastery.

    Due to my application of a growth mind set, I was able to learn more about the industrial revolution since I had to find evidence and analysis, while improving my writing skills. Throughout this project I became aware of the power the working class had on the Industrialization of different countries, such as Britain, by researching different strikes and types of revolution, like the creation of Unions. Overall, working without teacher support is challenging, yet if one has a growth mind set it is easier to learn and understand concepts to a greater extend.

  3. Extra Credit: Growth Mindset

    An experience this term in which I think I demonstrated a growth mindset was during the Industrial Revolution paragraph. I had difficulty incorporating analysis in the topic sentence and was frustrated with myself for not understanding it. However, I wanted to learn how to improve my topic sentences and kept trying. During the writing workshop I received feedback on my topic sentence. My peers told me that there was not analysis (the topic sentence was too factual), feedback that I struggled with because the topic sentence seemed similar to previous ones I had written and not been criticized on. Instead of ignoring their advice I took it constructively, and kept editing my topic sentence until I was on the right track.

    Taking criticism constructively and staying persistent through challenges are both signs of a growth mindset. I also made an effort to learn a new concept that was difficult for me instead of deciding I just could not do it, which would demonstrate a fixed mindset. The growth mindset improved my learning because it helped me realize the weakness in my topic sentences. My openness to new ideas enabled me to improve my writing, and gain a better understanding of analysis in topic sentences. I will continue using the advice I received for upcoming paragraphs throughout the year.

  4. Extra Credit- Thomas Berman
    Prior to this course, I had a very romanticized view of the U.S. political system. I viewed politicians as leaders capable of revolutionizing society and campaigns as social movements. This course has exposed some of the cruel realities to me. Campaigns are not social movements designed to revolutionize an era and rally a base. Campaigns are calculated machines, engineered to harvest the support of every constituent. This is not a new trend for campaigning. Campaigns have practice this since Ancient Rome and Cicero, all the way through JFK and Barack Obama. While campaigns may sometimes start a social movement, the movement is not the goal, but rather a method to gain more support. Overall, this class has exposed the dirt of politics, and diminished my opinion of the U.S. political system.

  5. extra credit- Tyler Jung

    I chose to edit my imperialism essay. I completed 2 drafts of my actual essay and completed two of my edited body paragraph. The sources of my feedback were Ms. Shapero and my peer editor. The most common kind of feedback I received was that many of my sentences didn’t really make sense and were slightly confusing. Some of my ideas were there but weren’t as concise as possible. I addressed the feedback in my later drafts by reading my sentences aloud and by varying my language as well. I also edited by reading the essay and cutting out any words that were not necessary. I will prevent this from happening in the future by reading my essay more thoroughly and by actively seeking help on the clarity of my sentences. I also will try to simplify my writing as I write, deciding what parts are necessary and which parts aren’t. An example of when I improved this aspect of my writing was when I edited my thesis statement. Ms. Shapero said that I was a little bit too specific when I said that imperial powers destroyed “national identity” of people. Ms. Shapero said that the word national wasn’t necessary and that it could be replaced with the word “cultural”. Formative assessment helped me because I wasn’t focused on the grade that I would receive but about the actual comments that I received, and by making multiple drafts, I was able to progressively add on to all of the aspects of my essay.

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  7. Jessie Sawyer Extra Credit-
    In the “Regional Dominance in classical civilizations” paragraph, I made two drafts. I received feedback from my peers in class. The most common types of feedback I received were to reword, explain ho, grammar, and using words that were not specific enough. In my later drafts, I reworded my sentences and fixed most of my grammar. To prevent this from happening again, I will review my work before I start writing and when I write, I will not make these mistakes and correct myself. When I wrote my final draft, I made words more specific and instead of saying waterways, I name the specific rivers. I also added analysis to explain my evidence. I used the word “their” a lot less.

  8. Mariah Leslie Extra Credit:
    In the Regional Dominance in Classical Civilizations paragraph, I wrote two drafts. I received feedback from peer edits. The most repeated feedback I saw was to analyze more, and be less repetitive in wording. In my final draft, I expanded in my analyses and used different wording in order to be less repetitive. This can be prevented by better planned analyses, and better proof reading to make sure the paragraph does not sound repetitive. I reduced my use of "another way" as well.

  9. This term, I completed an essay on Imperialism. I completed four drafts, while trying to get as many people as possible to read each of them. My first draft was created by myself, and I went back to edit it myself. This is the draft that I brought with me to the writing workshop on Imperialism, and had edited by my peers. This edited version I took home, and had my brother also edit, helping me with word choice and paragraph order, mostly. This was a rough draft, but I thought that it was polished enough to take it with me to the writing lab. Ms. Despo, the teacher on duty, helped me greatly. She helped me to broaden my thesis, and by doing so, it allowed for a new connection in my conclusion paragraph, where there was previously only a summary. I think that this helped me to end my paper on a strong note, with a concluding idea that really summed up the arguments of my body paragraphs. My fourth and final draft was edited by myself and my parents, who mostly edited it for word choice and repetition, as they do not know much about the topic, and I felt that my ideas and paragraphs had good ideas. Some of the most common types of feedback I received was repetition and word choice, but this was disappointing to receive from my peers during the writing workshop. I feel as though the students do not feel as if they have the right to change ideas in another students essay, and in an effort to make the student whose paper they are editing think that their essay is very good, students make only surface level revision that do not contribute to the essay as a whole. I find that to get edits on your ideas and the entire essay, going to the writing lab is the most effective method. In my future writing, I plan to visit the writing lab at least one time for each assignment, as this is where most of the real and significant editing takes place.

  10.         while writing the Imperialism essay this term, I found formative assessment to be very helpful. I completed 2 Drafts and recieved feedback and corrections from a couple of other students. I often recieved feedback on analyzing my quotes, and how I need to relate the information to my thesis. I adjusted my information so i could analyze it more thoughtfully and relate it to my thesis statement. if I could not adjust the information any more, I found a more thoughtful way to analyze the information. in the future i will try to pick information that connects to my thesis better and is more easily analyzed so i don't continue running into these issues.

    Will P.

  11. Clara Baselga-Garriga
    Purple Block

    Term 3 Extra Credit -Nationalism, World War I and World War II

    Nationalism is the desire for national independence originated when a nation feels the need to gain strength and global dominance. Although nationalism results in the internal unification of the people of an individual country, nationalism also causes a worldwide tension between nations. For instance, during nineteenth-century Nationalism in Germany, reformers were supported by landless peasant and working man to reduce barriers to trade. By creating a united nation to improve their economy situation, Germans were also decreasing their social class difference. However, Germans also saw nationalism as a beneficial ideology because: "a united Germany could better withstand French, Austrian, and Russian threats to take over or dominate individual German states" (The Shaping of Western Society: An Inquiring Approach) Therefore, Germany longed for a unification that would make them stronger as a nation, thus making the powers surrounding Germany seem weaker.

    The brutality and implication of World War I were the result of growing nationalism, and thus a fight between countries to be the most powerful. This tension lead to alliances between countries that shared interests and discord between those nations that were fighting for the same power. For example, Germany decided to ally with Austria-Hungary since they shared a common language, geography, and culture by signing a secret pact to help each other in case of Russian aggression and France, which was Germany's most hated enemy. In a similar manner, France's greatest enemy was Germany, and thus France decides to ally with Russia, who had Austria - Hungary as an enemy, since Germany and Austria-Hungary have made an alliance. These secret alliances caused the Serbian civil war to become a World War in which countries fought to maintain their own power and justified their actions as nationalistic ones. It was not until the world ended in 1919 that nations start to realize the destruction and chaos that the war has caused and the consequences of blinding nationalism. However, the destruction and misery of World War I did not result in the realization of the harms of radical nationalism, but instead it resulted in a poignant desire for revenge.

    Therefore, World War II was the consequences of the Allied powers seeking revenge on the Central Powers instead of arranging a fair treaty to ensure peace. France and Great Britain blamed the war on Germany and left them a debt of $33 billion. Germany found itself in complete chaos and could only rebuild their strength through nationalism. Unlike nineteenth-century nationalism, this time the German unification was purely based on revenge to the Allied Powers and a bitter yearn for Global Dominance. Once again, the selfish nationalism of nations resulted in the death of millions of individuals.

  12. Term 4 Extra Credit
    Global dominance throughout history has been defined by a country's military, economic, and political strength. A country with a strong military is able to support and enforce international interests as well as its own interests. During WWII many countries focused on building up their military to not only defend their countries but also to spread their influence to other countries. Japan and Germany focused their attention on becoming dominant world powers by increasing their military strength. While Germany and Japan lost the war, America, Russia and the allies were victorious. America and Russia were able to remain dominant powers throughout post WWII and the Cold War by having extremely powerful militaries that were able to defend their country. A country's economic stability and financial strength are also factors that determine its role in the modern world. A country with a strong economy can have influence in other countries by providing economic aid. America is able to provide Israel with weapons to defend itself and in turn America gains a strong ally. Finally a country with a free political system is less likely to experience a revolt. Countries such as Vietnam and many colonies in Africa had many revolts due to the fact that their leaders were not elected by the people. It is hard for a country to function if it's citizens do not like their leader and have no say in the government. By respecting it's citizens voice and opinions a country can secure a powerful position in the world such as America. Throughout history strong nations have used their military strength and money to conquer smaller and weaker countries. An example is France and Vietnam. Their acts of imperialism took away the colonized country's sense of nationalism, individualism, and freedom. Strict outer rule will give rise to revolt and retaliation which happened in Vietnam with France. Therefore countries must be careful with how they expand their power. Only a country that has a strong and stable military, economy, and government can become a global dominance in the modern world.
    -Alex McGinn

  13. Brian Creonte
    Purple Block
    Term 4 Extra Credit: What Defines Global Dominance in the Modern World?
    In the modern world, countries have achieved global dominance through many different ways, however, military strength is the one trait that truly defines and strengthens a country’s status as a global power. When thinking of global powers throughout history, dynasties such as the Roman Empire, the Greeks, and more recently, the United States jump to mind. These empires’ militaries were all supreme, and were undoubtedly a significant part of their power. Throughout modern history, these trends hold up. One of the countries that was unquestionably a world power was Germany. The Germans were heavily involved in the two major wars of the 20th century, and managed to nearly singlehandedly defeat the British, French, Americans and Russians. The military that Hitler and Bismark grew up for the Germans was supremely powerful, and thus the Germans gained leverage and respect from the rest of the world, specifically Europe. Another country that was unquestionably a world power during modern history was England. One of the primary reasons for the high status of England was their military, specifically, their navy. The English Navy was the largest of any country in the world, and they used it to their advantage during both of the World Wars. The military power of the English was one of the only things standing between Hitler and global dominance during the early 1940s. The only thing that was able to neutralize the German’s military power was the equally powerful army of the Allied powers. Finally, also an Allied power, the United States of America was truly a global power throughout modern world history. The Americans gained their independence from England using the strength of their military, and the entrance of the United States’ military in World War II was one of the major turning points of the conflict. The strength of the American military really helped neutralize the power of the Germans, effectively restoring world order. Throughout modern world history, military strength was the one trait that successfully defined a country as a major world power.