Social Studies Mission Statement:
The purpose of social studies at Fast Forward is to prepare our students to become informed and engaged citizens of a culturally diverse and globally interdependent world. Our focus as social studies educators is to ensure that social studies is meaningful, real, and authentic for all students. We are challenged to increase our students’ knowledge about the people of the world as they strive to find resolutions to both local and global problems. 

Philip Nelson

Social Studies Vision statement:

Teaching social studies powerfully and authentically begins with a deep knowledge and understanding of the subject and its unique goals. Social studies programs prepare students to identify, understand, and work to solve the challenges facing our diverse nation in an increasingly interdependent world. Education for citizenship should help students acquire and learn to use the skills, knowledge, and attitudes that will prepare them to be competent and responsible citizens throughout their lives. Competent and responsible citizens are informed and thoughtful, participate in their communities, are involved politically, and exhibit moral and civic virtues. Powerful social studies teaching combines elements of all the disciplines as it provides opportunities for students to conduct inquiry, develop and display data, synthesize findings, and make judgments.Social studies teaching and learning requires effective use of technology, communication, and reading/writing skills that add important dimensions to students’ learning.

Required Social Studies Courses


Geography is described as the study of the “why of the where.” Geography for Life will explore how to use geography as a tool to better understand the world in which we live. Students will learn to evaluate and question the why and where of spatial perceptions that are read, seen, and heard.

United States History A

United States History for grade 8 covers events and issues from the Age of Exploration through Reconstruction and the western movement, emphasizing the 18th and 19th centuries. Topics covered will include, but are not limited to: exploration, colonization, Revolutionary War, constitutional issues, nation building, Civil War, Reconstruction, and western movement.

United States History B

Understanding United States history is essential for the continuation of our democratic society. This course will help students make connections between their world and the rich heritage of United States history. The course is designed as a survey of American history with an emphasis on post-Reconstruction American (1876- Present)

United States Government

The goal of this course is to foster informed, responsible participation in public life. Knowing how to be a good citizen is essential to the preservation and improvement of United States democracy. Upon completion of this course the student will understand the major ideas, protections, privileges, structures, and economic systems that affect the life of a citizen in the United States political system.

Ancient World Civilizations

In this course, we will study the emergence of the major civilizations of the ancient world, beginning with the Paleolithic Era (about 2.5 million years ago) and finishing with the end of the Middle Ages in fifteenth century A.D. We will pay special attention to how societies evolved across this expanse of time—from fragmented and primitive agricultural communities to more advanced and consolidated civilizations.

Modern World Civilizations

This is a course is designed to provide a foundation for understanding the development of the modern world in both Western and non-Western societies. Emphasis will be placed on the rapid changes which swept the globe in the period under study, with special attention paid to the rise of the United States as a world power, the impact of industrialization and urban growth, the rise of European nationalism and imperialism and their effects on non-Western societies, and the massive transformation of the world caused by the sweeping events and ideas of the 20th century. The links between the past and present will be core components of this course in order to explain current conditions.

Financial Literacy

he General Financial Literacy Core is designed for junior and senior students and represents those standards of learning that are essential to the development of basic financial literacy. Students will be enabled to implement those basic decision-making skills to become more aware as consumers, savers, investors, borrowers, money managers, citizens, and members of a global workforce.

Elective Social Studies Courses

ACT Prep

ACT Prep is a Social Studies class designed to get all juniors ready to take the state sponsored ACT test. It focuses on the four core areas that are tested: English, math, reading and science. Students are expected to put in a high level of preparation and studying in order to be ready for the ACT. This class will teach both the skills and the routines, as both are needed to be successful on the ACT. This class also offers a chance to spend time on Utah State campus to help make the ins and outs of college more accessible.

Life Skills

Life Skills is a Social Studies class aimed at preparing students emotionally, developmentally, and socially for the rigors of decision-making and consequences in high school and beyond. Personal development, including goal setting, accountability for actions, and increased awareness of what is needed for success will be heavily emphasized. Sean R. Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens will be utilized as a resource for helping students learn needed organizational, motivational, and real world skills in order to be more fully ready to participate in a changing world.


Psychology is an academic and applied discipline that involves the scientific study of the mental functions and behaviors.