New York

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Skills available for New York seventh-grade social studies standards

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7.1 The physical environment and natural resources of North America influenced the development of the first human settlements and the culture of Native Americans. Native American societies varied across North America.

  • 7.1a Geography and climate influenced the migration and cultural development of Native Americans. Native Americans in North America settled into different regions and developed distinct cultures.

    • Students will examine theories of human settlement of the Americas.

    • Students will compare and contrast different Native American culture groups, with a focus on the influence geographic factors had on their development, including Sioux and Anasazi.

    • Students will examine the various Native American culture groups located within what became New York State including Haudenosaunee (Iroquois), and the influence geographic factors had on their development.

7.2 European exploration of the New World resulted in various interactions with Native Americans and in colonization. The American colonies were established for a variety of reasons and developed differently based on economic, social, and geographic factors. Colonial America had a variety of social structures under which not all people were treated equally.

7.3 Growing tensions over political power and economic issues sparked a movement for independence from Great Britain. New York played a critical role in the course and outcome of the American Revolution.

7.4 The newly independent states faced political and economic struggles under the Articles of Confederation. These challenges resulted in a Constitutional Convention, a debate over ratification, and the eventual adoption of the Bill of Rights.

  • 7.4a Throughout the American Revolution, the colonies struggled to address their differing social, political, and economic interests and to establish unity. The Articles of Confederation created a form of government that loosely united the states, but allowed states to maintain a large degree of sovereignty.

  • 7.4b The lack of a strong central government under the Articles of Confederation presented numerous challenges. A convention was held to revise the Articles, the result of which was the Constitution. The Constitution established a democratic republic with a stronger central government.

    • Students will investigate the successes and failures of the Articles of Confederation, determine why many felt a new plan of government was needed, and explain how the United States Constitution attempted to address the weaknesses of the Articles.

    • Students will examine the New York State Constitution, its main ideas and provisions, and its influence on the formation of the United States Constitution.

  • 7.4c Advocates for and against a strong central government were divided on issues of States rights, role/limits of federal power, and guarantees of individual freedoms. Compromises were needed between the states in order to ratify the Constitution.

7.5 The United States Constitution serves as the foundation of the United States government and outlines the rights of citizens. The Constitution is considered a living document that can respond to political and social changes. The New York State Constitution also has been changed over time.

7.6 Driven by political and economic motives, the United States expanded its physical boundaries to the Pacific Ocean between 1800 and 1860. This settlement displaced Native Americans as the frontier was pushed westward.

7.7 Social, political, and economic inequalities sparked various reform movements and resistance efforts. Influenced by the Second Great Awakening, New York State played a key role in major reform efforts.

  • 7.7a The Second Great Awakening, which had a strong showing in New York State, inspired reform movements.

    • Students will investigate examples of early 19th-century reform movements, such as education, prisons, temperance, and mental health care, and examine the circumstances that led to the need for reform.

  • 7.7b Enslaved African Americans resisted slavery in various ways in the 19th century. The abolitionist movement also worked to raise awareness and generate resistance to the institution of slavery.

    • Students will examine ways in which enslaved Africans organized and resisted their conditions.

    • Students will explore efforts of William Lloyd Garrison, Frederick Douglass, and Harriet Tubman to abolish slavery.

    • Students will examine the effects of Uncle Tom's Cabin on the public perception of slavery.

    • Students will investigate New York State and its role in the abolition movement, including the locations of Underground Railroad stations.

  • 7.7c Women joined the movements for abolition and temperance and organized to advocate for women's property rights, fair wages, education, and political equality.

  • 7.7d The Anti-Rent movement in New York State was an attempt by tenant farmers to the protest the landownership system.

    • Students will trace the Anti-Rent movement in New York State.

7.8 Westward expansion, the industrialization of the North, and the increase of slavery in the South contributed to the growth of sectionalism. Constitutional conflicts between advocates of states' rights and supporters of federal power increased tensions in the nation; attempts to compromise ultimately failed to keep the nation together, leading to the Civil War.