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Social Studies

For complete COURSE DESCRIPTIONS, click on Course Title below in chart and/or go to Class Registration

For complete TEXTBOOKS/SUPPLIES, click on Course on Class Registration 

For TUTOR BIOGRAPHIES, click on Tutor Name in below chart and/or go to Class Registration

For assistance in choosing the correct class, please see WEST's Class Track Guidelines

Tuition Payments are broken up with two payments for semester classes and four payments for annual classes


Middle School US History & Civics  5-8   Monseth   Full Year    $385
Middle School World History: 
Ancient Civilizations to Renaissance
5-8   Papia   Full Year    $385
Middle School World History: 
Age of Explorers to Present Day
5-8   Monseth   Full Year    $385
High School United States History 8-12


  Full Year    $390
High School World History & Geography: Renaissance to Present 8-12 G.Schmalz/
  Full Year    $390
High School American
Government / Economics
8-12   R. Fraser / C.Schmalz   Full Year    $390
World Religions  8-12    Carlson   Fall    $190
Cultural Insights: A Bible Perspective for Yesterday, Today, & Tomorrow  9-12    Hopf   Full Year    $355
Worldview 9-12    Arfsten   Full Year    $375
HUMAN-ities  9-12    Carlson   Spring    $195



Cultural Insights: A Biblical Perspective for Yesterday, Today, & Tomorrow
Equip your students for today with the knowledge and understanding of yesterday.

Students will learn how to have inviting, authentic and productive conversation about cultural and racial differences in a safe and well cared for classroom environment. Through self-discovery, cultural awareness and history, students will learn to understand more about God’s rich, diverse world and the people living in it. How we see ourselves, others and how Christ sees us all is the foundation of this course.Through small and large group discussions, speakers, videos, movies, literature and projects, students will learn that in Christ we have far more in common while being created wonderfully unique.

The heart of this class is to offer opportunity and engagement in who we are, who others are and who God says we are. Creating a safe space for students to ask questions and explore answers that seem a bit taboo and possibly uncomfortable in today’s culture will be guided with sensitivity, love and care.

Middle School US History & Civics
The study of United States History is the story of our ancestors, and how they shaped a nation. We will explore this story through the eyes of the people who lived it using living books, biographies, speakers, hands-on activities, and first-hand accounts. The goal of this class is to bring American History to life for the students. The goal of American History is not only to learn dates, timelines, and geography, but to understand how God is at the center of all history. We will study the lives of influential figures & missionaries and always circle back to God’s Word to see how this impacts our lives in the present day.

Class time will be fun and hands on! It will be a time for group projects, games, discussion, quizzes and grow in our knowledge of God.

This year-long class covers the very beginnings of our country up through World War II. The Civics component is built into the class and is not treated as a separate subject. United States Geography will also be worked into this course.

Middle School World History:  Ancient Civilizations to Renaissance
This year-long class will provide students with a better understanding of our world and the people who live in it. We will cover ancient civilizations and medieval history around the world as well as Western civilizations from the middle ages to present. This is a project-based class. We will utilize hands-on activities, music, games, living books, and interactive slide presentations with the goal of bringing world history to life for students! 

Middle School World History:  Age of Explorers to Present Day
Students will study the Age of Exploration up to the Present Day and learn all about the wars, revolutions, and cultural movements that defined these times.  We’ll be traversing the globe from England to India to Russia to Japan to America. The World’s Story 3, which presents history from a Christian perspective, will be the foundational text for this class. Students will also be reading 1-2 biographies per semester to dig deeper into the lives of key historical characters.  A study of World History is not only dates, timelines, and geography,  but more importantly is understanding how God is at the center of all history.  For this reason, we will explore the lives of influential figures of the faith as God’s Word impacted their lives and can empower us in the present day.  

Class time will be fun and hands on!  It will be a time for us to do group projects, play games, discuss historical events/people in depth, present projects (both individually and as a group), complete quizzes, and grow in our knowledge of God.

The only United States history covered in this course will be post World War II.

High School American Government / Economics

Fall Semester: Students will be introduced to the foundational principles of government, the branches of government, the concept of democracy and active, responsible citizenship. Material to be discussed includes the components of the Declaration of Independence and its history, the United States Constitution and its history, the Amendments, political parties, elections and more. If time allows, students will also explore the United Nations organization and U.S. foreign policy. Students will be engaged in a variety of projects.

Spring Semester: Economics is all around us - Where does money come from? Why does the iPhone cost so much? Should I work for someone else or start a small business? Students will be exposed to what economics is and how it applies to their lives on a daily basis. Students will demonstrate an understanding of basic micro and macro economic concepts: defining economics, free enterprise, supply and demand, market-clearing price, consumer/savers/investors, money and financial institutions in the United States and more. This is a high school level course that will offer students the opportunity to learn about the economic system in America through reading, discussion, presentations, projects - hands-on and interactive!

High School United States History
The US History course will focus on teaching about the important people and events that have shaped our nation from Christopher Columbus through 9/11. The course will focus on how the country was formed and has changed by looking at 5 broad concepts:  people, economy/business, politics/philosophy, culture/religion, and national identity. Each concept will look at its effect on past events and how it affects the world we live in today. This is a foundational history course that is meant to prepare students for success in college-level US History.

High School World History & Geography:  Renaissance to Present
This World History class will primarily cover the Renaissance through the 9/11.  As it is covering a large section of time, it will be a bird’s eye view of history taught through common themes that various peoples across the globe have struggled with throughout time.  Topics will be introduced thematically, rather than chronologically.  Some themes include: Purpose, Freedom, Resources, Rights, and Innovation.  The themes will cross time and region, while students connect the past to the present.

This course also contains a geography component which will allow you to count ½ credit of Geography along with a credit of History.

The class will also use primary sources found on the internet, videos, and speakers. Class time will be structured with lecture, presentations, group discussion, group work, and projects. Students will have outside reading and projects to complete as well.

What are the core cultural pieces to humanity? Philosophy, Music, Money, Food, Literature, Architecture, Art, Drama and more. This class studies the major components of life and the relationship we have with the world around us, including world civilizations and their achievements through the classic elements of society. We will explore how different cultures have influenced one another throughout history from ancient times to the 21st century through hands-on, engaging activities, projects, and discussions. We will study popular movements and how they shaped our modern society. By discussing different genres, themes, styles, and ideas from different time periods, we will gain a better understanding of how the past has influenced the present. Throughout this course we will marvel at the gifts and talents God has given us as humans and how He has gifted each one of us with His creativity.

This class is full of exploration and fun! Students will leave the semester with a solid knowledge base of human culture.

To complement the “hard” sciences like math, science, and personal finance, this class will help us gain a fuller understanding of how humanity has expressed itself throughout the ages and how we can evaluate scientific discoveries through God’s moral compass.

This course also serves as a history or elective credit.

This class is also an excellent precursor to PSEO Art Appreciation and World Civilizations as well as a solid course before or after 8-12th grade Worldview, World Religions and World History.

World Religions
What is religion? In this class we will answer that question and explore the major religions of the world: Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, and more. In this ever-shrinking world, it is important to understand people from other faiths while retaining our Biblical worldview. While studying each religion, students will also touch on the culture and geography of where each religion originated and is now most influential. Through engaging small and large group discussions, reading assignments, hands-on projects, videos, and interactive games, we will discover what sets Christianity apart from other religions.

After taking this class, students can chose to take the Introduction to World Religions DSST test with significant preparation.

This course is a strong paring before, during or after the Worldview class and HUMAN-ities!

What is truth? Does God exist? Why am I here? In worldview class we make space to wrestle with and discover the answers to these and the other “ultimate questions” in life. 

What you believe will shape how you perceive the world and culture around you and determine the outcome of your life, therefore, students will learn how “ideas have consequences” and explore the foundations of the Christian worldview while comparing these to the foundations of other, competing worldviews.

Students will learn the kingdom principles of identity, purpose, sharing the gospel and how to apply their Christian faith to every area of life: theology, philosophy, ethics, biology, sociology, politics, psychology and more.

Summit Ministries: “Light Bearers” curriculum will provide the core guidance through topics such as apologetics, cults, evolution, naturalism, moral relativism, relationships, and socialism.