Early American History

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Credits: 1

Prerequisite: None

Recommended: 10th  (It can be used for other grade levels. This is the recommendation for the progression of the courses.)

Test Prep: CLEP  History of the US I, AP American History when combined with Modern American History

Course Description: Honors US History I (transcript course title)  This honors course takes students from the Age of Exploration through the Reconstruction Era. Students will learn about America’s early history by using online AP and college courses. The information is presented in readings and videos; students will respond with written work including paragraphs, journals and a research paper in which students will give an analysis of how the Civil War changed America. A final exam will be given.

Reading List: Student readings pull from a variety of websites with a focus on primary sources. Christopher Columbus’ journal, Bradford’s History of the Plymouth Plantation, letters between Washington and Madison, treaties, court decisions, speeches (including Washington’s inaugural and farewell speeches and Jonathan Edwards’ “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God”), Federalist Papers, the Constitution, Sage American History by Henry Sage, First Across the Continent by Noah Brooks, and either Two Years Before the Mast by Richard Henry Dana Jr. or Oregon Trail: Sketches of Prairie and Rocky-Mountain life by Francis Parkman

Thank you to Jennifer Cox for her work in constructing this course.


Native Americans and Early Explorers

Day 1(*) (Note that an asterisk * indicates that there is a worksheet on this day)

  1. If you didn’t get here through My EP Assignments, I suggest you go there and create an account.

If a link is not working, follow the steps on the FAQ page.

  1. (*)Print out your grading sheet for your first quarter or use the Excel version.
  2. Read over these questions for Days 1-8 and be on the lookout for the answers. Write the answers in complete sentences or paragraphs. Your answer should restate the question. I should know what you are answering without having to read the question.
  3. While you will have assigned reading and videos in this course, you will not get all of your information that way. You will be researching to find answers to some of the required questions.
  4. Read about Native American Cultures. There’s a link in the reading to learn more about the Anasazi that’s not working. You can read about them here.
  5. Pay attention and take notes and review them from time to time. There is a final exam at the end of the course.
  6. Answer the first questions about the different Native American tribes. Do research.

Day 2

  1. Read about Christopher Columbus‘ 1492 voyage.
  2. Look at this picture of Columbus. Based on this picture, what motivated Columbus’ expedition?
  3. Read this excerpt from a letter from the King and Queen of Spain to Columbus.
    • “For as much of you, Christopher Columbus, are going by our command, with some of our vessels and men, to discover and subdue some Islands and Continent in the ocean, and it is hoped that by God’s assistance, some of the said Islands and Continent in the ocean will be discovered and conquered by your means and conduct, therefore it is but just and reasonable, that since you expose yourself to such danger to serve us, you should be rewarded for it. And we being willing to honour and favour you for the reasons aforesaid; Our will is, That you, Christopher Columbus, after discovering and conquering the said Islands and Continent in the said ocean, or any of them, shall be our Admiral of the said Islands and Continent you shall so discover and conquer; and that you be our Admiral, Vice-Roy, and Governour in them.”
    • According to this, what was the motivation of Columbus’ expedition?
  4. Are they the same or different? Explain to someone.
  5. Answer the question on your sheet about Columbus.
  6. Read Christopher Columbus: Extracts from Journal (stop at Tuesday September 25).

Day 3

  1. Read about commerce.
  2. Read Christopher Columbus: Extracts from Journal (Sept 25- Stop at October 15).

Day 4

  1. Read about technological factors. Scroll down to find it.
  2. Read Christopher Columbus: Extracts from Journal (October 15- finish).

Day 5

  1. Read about the rise of nation-states and exchanges. Scroll down to find it.
  2. Look over this chart about the exchanges between the Old and New Worlds (Scroll down to page 4.)
  3. You should be working on your answers.

Day 6

  1. Read about Spanish Explorers.
  2. Look at this picture: Black Legend. Based on this picture, how might England have used the Black Legend to motivate and justify its colonization of North America?
  3. Read Pattern of Exploration and Annihilation” from Civilizations under Siege: The European Conquest of the Americas.
  4. Make sure you are working on your answers. (I’m not going to always be reminding you!)

Day 7

  1. Read about French Explorers. Scroll down to find it.
  2. Explore the Routes of Exploration. (from NROC) The rulers of Spain and the rulers of France had different goals for their explorations of the New World.  What was the primary objective for French expeditions? (answer: to establish strong trade relationships with Native Americans)
  3. NOTE: When I ask questions right in the assignment, you don’t have to write those down if you don’t want to. They don’t need to be paragraphs or complete sentences. They are things I want you to stop and think about. These can be things to tell someone about or to discuss.
  4. Read “Resisting the European Onslaught” from Civilizations under Siege: The European Conquest of the Americas.

Day 8

  1. Read about the Spanish Mission system.
  2. Read about this Mission.
  3. Finish your answers.
  4. 2 points for finishing on time.
  5. Read your teacher’s answers.
  6. Grade your answers up to 38 points; 2 for each answer for accuracy and completeness and up to 5 points for each of the two paragraph responses. Remember: your answers should be in complete sentences or paragraphs. Your answer should restate the question. I should know what you are answering without having to read the question.
  7. Record your score out of 40 (remember, 2 points for completing them on time, if you did complete all the answers.)
  8. Take a minute to explore through these names of people who lived during this time in history. Click on “people” on the left and then choose the date range on the right to bring up the names. Look through the names in the 1500s and the 1600s. Choose 1500-2010 from the index. There was more going on in the world than just the beginnings of America as we know it today.
  9. How do you think God’s establishing of America changed the state of Christianity in the world? (Note: My ancestors were Huguenots; they fled France under religious persecution and founded the Isle of Guernsey.)


Day 9 

  1. Read over your next set of questions. They are for Days 9-22. (It mentions taking notes while you watch the videos. The videos were on the Plymouth Colony. The videos have been replaced with readings.)
    • There’s a missing question: What is one important difference between colonial Maryland and Virginia?
  2. Read about the Jamestown Colony.
  3. Explore the picture.
  4. Read about the House of Burgesses.
  5. Answer the question about the House of Burgesses from the sheet of questions you’ve been given for this section. (Remember that you can always research to answer a question if you don’t think it is sufficiently answered in the texts.)
  6. You will not normally be told when to complete what answer. You can always go back and add more info to one of your answers if you read more about it.

Day 10 

  1. Read “Tobacco’s but an Indian Weed” and “The First Virginia Charter.”
  2. What does the poem about tobacco tell us about the controversy surrounding the introduction of tobacco to Europe?
  3. What was one of the primary reasons the king stated in the Virginia Charter for allowing the colony to be established?  (answer: to “propagate the Christian Religion“)
  4. Read “Virginia: The London Company.” Do not use the links on the page.

Day 11 

  1. Watch this History Channel video about Jamestown
  2. Read “John Smith: Starving Time in Virginia.”

New England

Day 12 

  1. Read about the Plymouth Colony. Scroll down to find it.
  2. Read chapter 8 (Book 1) Plymouth Plantation by William Bradford. (if you want to download the book, if you want to listen to it)

Day 13 

  1. Watch this History channel video about Mayflower Myths.
  2. Read chapter 9 of Plymouth Plantation.  (audio)
  3. If you like pictures to go along with your reading…this is just extra, for those interested.

Day 14 

  1. Read chapter 10 of Plymouth Plantation.  (audio)
  2. You might want to again read over your next set of questions. They are for Days 9-22. Answer them as you are able. Don’t put off until tomorrow what you can do today.

Day 15 

  1. Read the first half of chapter 1 book 2 of Plymouth Plantation. Stop at the top of page 79. (audio)

Day 16 

  1. Read this excerpt from Education Portal on where the Plymouth Colony settled and why:
    • “Despite popular belief, the Mayflower did not land at Plymouth Rock. The ship first dropped anchor at Cape Cod, which was outside the chartered land of the London Company, to whom some of the passengers were indentured (meaning they had promised to work for 7 years to pay off the cost of transporting and settling them in the colony). Their charter told them to land at the mouth of the Hudson River, which was at the northern edge of Virginia.Now, they would have to find a new location for Plymouth. But with winter upon them, the Pilgrims had to live on board the Mayflower while they scouted a permanent site. And as the winter progressed, these cramped shipmates grew increasingly discontent.Even though some people have said the Mayflower got blown off course, it’s entirely possible that the Pilgrims went farther north on purpose. Being outside of the London Company’s domain would mean they weren’t subject to the company’s authority. And of course, the indentured servants were no longer in the company’s service. Unfortunately, some of those former indentured servants became unruly and threatened to settle out on their own.”
  2. Finish chapter 1 book 2 Plymouth Plantation.  (audio)

Day 17 

  1. Read about the Massachusetts Bay Colony.
  2. Use the links to read:
  3. Why was this charter unique? (answer: It allowed for a local government body.)
  4. What social philosophy did John Winthrop advocate? (answer: social reciprocity)
  5. Don’t forget about the missing question: What is one important difference between colonial Maryland and Virginia?

Day 18 

  1. Read the second topic on the page, The Puritan Religion.
  2. Read Sage’s, “Puritans of New England.”
  3. Remember to be answering questions. You can probably answer all but the last question now. If you need to do a little research, do so.

Day 19 

  1. Finish reading the page, Dissention in the Bay Colony.
  2. Read Henry Sage’s, “New England Expands to New Colonies

Mid Atlantic and Southern Colonies

Day 20 

  1. Read about New York and New Jersey.
  2. Read the Release of New Jersey.
  3. What do you think might have been the Duke of York’s motivation in giving part of his conquered territory to Lord John Berkley and Sir George Carteret?

Day 21 

  1. Read about Pennsylvania and Delaware.
  2. Read the excerpts from Penn’s Treaty and Penn’s frame of government.
  3. How do you think Penn’s religious beliefs influence his interaction with the Native Americans?
  4. What does Penn say was government’s divine right? (answer: “cherish those that do well”)

Day 22

  1. Read about Maryland, Carolina and Georgia.
  2. Take a look at this link for the original 13 colonies.
  3. Read the excerpt from The Maryland Toleration Act of 1649.
  4. Which religion was protected in the Toleration Act? (answer: Catholicism)
  5. You should be finished your questions for this section.
  6. Read your teacher’s answers.
  7. Record your score out of 29.
    1. 2 points for the 7 short answers, 1 point for accuracy, 1 point for completeness
    2. 5 points for the three long answers, 3 point for accuracy, 2 point for completeness
  8. Take some time to explore where we are in history. Click the right arrow to scroll through events of the 1600s. It starts toward the end of the 1500s. You can just read the titles.

Colonial Life

Day 23

  1. Read over your questions for Days 23-30 . Answer them according to the directions as you are able. Don’t leave them for the last day!
  2. Read about the origins of slavery.
  3. Look at this image of a slave ship.
  4. Read this excerpt (comes second) from Virginia’s Slave Code and the annotation.
  5. Read this excerpt from The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano, showing a slave’s experience.
  6. What changes occurred to increase the demand for slaves? (answer: One answer, a sharp decline in the number of indentured servants)
  7. What were some ways the slaves were affected by Virginia’s Slave Code?

Day 24

  1. Read the section on “Diversity,” the second topic.
  2. Look at this map about colonial imports and exports.
  3. What were the major imports and exports in the New World?
  4. Read Sage’s “Colonial Life: Work, Family, Faith.” Stop at The Protestant Reformation in Germany and England.

Day 25

  1. Read the last section, “Family and Social Life“.
  2. Read the quoted passage from the Charter of Rhode Island:
    “…That our royal will and pleasure is, that no person within the said Colony, at any time hereafter, shall be any wise molested, punished, disquieted, or called in question, for any differences in opinion in matters of religion, and do not actually disturb the civil peace of our said Colony; but that all and every person and persons may, from time to time, and at all times hereafter, freely and fully have and enjoy his and their own judgments and consciences, in matters of religious concernments, throughout the tract of land hereafter mentioned, they behaving themselves peaceably and quietly, and not using this liberty to licentiousness and profaneness, nor to the civil injury or outward disturbance of others…”  (source)
  3. What did it declare everyone was free to do?  (answer: have their own religious beliefs as long as they aren’t causing problems for everyone else)
  4. Finish Sage’s “Colonial Life: Work, Family, Faith.”

Day 26

  1. Scroll down to read the second topic, “The Great Awakening.”
  2. Read “The Great Awakening.”
  3. Read about half of Jonathan Edward’s famous sermon, “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God.” He preached this sermon to thousands in Connecticut in 1741.

Day 27

  1. Finish reading from “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God.”
  2. Read about the Enlightenment.
  3. Read Sage’s “The Enlightenment in America.”
  4. In what ways did the Enlightenment affect religion? (Remember, these questions don’t have to be answered in written form. Stop and think. You could discuss this at the dinner table.)

Day 28

  1. Read about the Salem Witch Trials:
    • Overview of the Salem Witch Trials
    • National Geographic Presentation Stop at the Epilogue. You’ll read in this presentation how the girls who started it were disobeying their families and listening to a fortune teller, who we believe may either be a fake or be someone who is cooperating with a demon in tricking foolish folks into believing they are predicting the future, when only God knows the future. Here we read that this woman admitted to serving Satan. The girls, in their sin and dabbling with occultic activity, opened the door for Satan in their lives. Who knows, maybe they wanted the same “power” the fortune teller had and asked for it? I don’t know what happened, but it seems obvious from the description of them convulsing, cowering and speaking nonsense that they became demonized. That means that demons came and took over part of them. You can invite demons into your life just like we ask the Holy Spirit to come into our lives. Demons may promise excitement and power, but are liars and end up hurting you. The Holy Spirit only works for our good and is completely trustworthy and faithful. I know someone who told me that he purposefully invited demons into his life wanting magical powers. He ended up hating his life. In the Salem Witch Trials we see a church without the power to free them from the demons. That is not a true demonstration of what the Church should be. Thankfully, the man I know was freed from the demons in him and filled with the Holy Spirit instead and now teaches the Bible. Also, this isn’t to say that everyone who was part of this was dealing with demons. People got scared and acted in fear, making crazy accusations. Certainly no one should have been killed, no matter what the truth was.
  2. The following excerpt comes from Ambleside online year 9:
    • The Salem Witch Trials were a blight on our history, but the fact remains that they stand out because of the rarity of witchcraft executions in the Colonies, and their comparatively late date (although Switzerland executed a witch in 1892). In the Colonies, 40 people were executed for witchcraft, half of them in the Salem Trials, and one of the key judges later repented and expressed his deep sorrow for his role in the executions. In England, there were nearly a thousand witchcraft trials from 1552 to 1722, and roughly a quarter of those ended in executions. Scotland tried nearly 2,000 in the same period, and even Switzerland had nearly 400 witchcraft trials in this period with nearly a quarter of the accused executed. Southwestern Germany executed some 3,000 during the same time period.

Day 29

  1. Choose the Epilogue from the top menu.
  2. Then click to continue and choose to read the answers to questions. You’ll have to click one more time to get to “Read the Answers.”
  3. Write a paragraph stating your thoughts on the Salem Witch Trials.
  4. Are you finished with your questions for this section?

King Philip’s War

Day 30

  1. Read from the sites linked below.
  2. Read your teacher’s answers to your questions for Days 23-30.
  3. Record your score out of 40; 2 points for single sentence answers. 5 points for each paragraph answer. Answers much be in the correct form (or subtract 1 to 2 points). The additional points are for accuracy and completeness. Answers will not match exactly and that’s okay. (This gives you the chance to get 1 point of extra credit.)
  4. Look at the history of the 17th and 18th centuries. Click on “history” and choose the correct time frame.

Day 31

  1. Read over these instructions for your upcoming project.
  2. Read over your questions for Days 31-36. Make sure you answer in complete sentences or paragraphs, always restating the question in the answer.
  3. Read about the North American Alliance.
  4. Look at the famous cartoon, Join or Die. This is considered to be the first-ever published political cartoon. What does it show and what is Franklin trying to convey by it?

Day 32

  1. Read about the Proclamation of 1763 .
  2. Read Sage’s, “The Second Hundred Years War.”

Day 33

  1. Read about the causes and effects of the French and Indian War.
  2. Read pages 1-4 of Samuel Adams’ “The Right of the Colonies.”
  3. Read about the Stamp Act.

The American Revolution

Day 34

  1. Finish reading “The Right of the Colonies.”
  2. Read about the Sons of Liberty.
  3. Read the first third of “Common Sense” by Thomas Paine. You will be reading the whole thing. (download)

Day 35

  1. Read about The Townshend Duties, topic 2.
  2. View these accounts, from two opposing points of view, of the Boston Massacre.
  3. Continue reading  “Common Sense.”
  4. Read about the Boston Massacre.

Day 36

  1. Scroll down to read about the Boston Tea Party.
  2. Read the Eyewitness account of the Boston Tea Party.
  3. Look over this timeline of Milestone Events.
  4. Finish reading “Common Sense.”
  5. Read or listen to Patrick Henry’s, “Give Me Liberty” Speech.
  6. Read your teacher’s answers to the questions for Days 31-36.
  7. Record your score out of 20. There is potential for extra credit. You can score up to 5 points for your three paragraph answers. Lose one point if it’s not a paragraph. Lose one point if it does not restate the question. Your answers will not match your teacher’s exactly. You get the points if you followed the directions and answered the questions fully. You get two points for each sentence answer. Lose one point if it’s not in a complete sentence and doesn’t restate the question.

Day 37

  1. Read over your questions for Days 37-45.
  2. Read about the political philosophy of the American Revolution.
  3. Read about Lexington and Concord.

Day 38

  1. Read about the social philosophy.
  2. Read Abigail Adams’ letter to her husband, John Adams.

Day 39

  1. Read about The Continental Congress.
  2. Read about spies, Espionage.
  3. Read the Declaration of Independence.  (Listen to it being read.)

Day 40

  1. Read about The Great Declaration, second topic on the page.
  2. Begin reading your biography (if you have not all ready.) You will only have a presentation to watch today though day 45. There is no additional reading, but you need to be writing answers to your questions due on Day 45.
  3. Here’s a reminder of your upcoming project. Part of your score will be following the directions and completing it on time.

Day 41

  1. Read about The Second Continental Congress.

Day 42

  1. Read about the major battles of the Revolution.
  2. Explore the link “13 colonies during the war.” You don’t have to write out answers, but you can think about the answers.

Day 43

  1. Read the second section on the page, “The War Continues with French Allies.”

Day 44

  1. Read about George Washington’s Leadership.
  2. Read about the Battle of Yorktown.

Day 45

  1. Read about the Peace of Paris (1783). This is third on the page.
  2. Read over your teacher’s answers.
  3. Record your score out of 10. That leaves one point for extra credit. You get 2 points for the first question if you answered it and used a complete sentence retelling the question. You get one point for each of the others: 0.5 point for the “define,” and 0.5 point for the significance. Answers will not match exactly.

This is the end of the first quarter. You may want to hold onto your questions and answers for your portfolio. You can figure out your grade by totaling your scores and dividing by the total possible. Your goal is to get an A.

Day 46(*)

  1. (*) Print out your next grading sheet or use the Excel version.
  2. See below.

Days 46, 47, 48, 49, and 50

  1. Finish reading your biography and prepare your presentation.
  2. On Day 50 present your presentation. Stand in front of your audience. Read your slides but also add to them. Answer their questions.
  3. Grade your presentation with this rubric. Add 16 points if your presentation was completed on time and met all of the criteria given. Follow the directions and submit your work on time. Life lessons 🙂
    • rubric source – don’t need to click on this
  4. Record your score out or 40.

The Forming of the Government

Day 51

  1. Read over your questions for Days 51-58.
  2. Read about Forming a Confederation.
  3. Read this summary of the Articles of Confederation.

Day 52

  1. Read the second topic, The Social Revolution.
  2. Read the Virginia Statute of Religious Freedom and the annotation before it, which explains it.
  3. Look at these pictures.
  4. Look over the timeline.

Day 53

  1. Read about International Relations.
  2. Read, “Identifying Defects in the Confederation.”
  3. Make sure you are answering your questions as you are able. Also make sure you are using complete sentences and restating the question in your response.

Day 54

  1. Read about Land Ordinances in the Old Northwest. It’s the second topic on the page.
  2. Make sure you are always looking to be answering your questions.

Day 55

  1. Read the first third of this article on Constitutional Government.  Stop at the Legislative Branch.
  2. While some founding fathers may have not believed in divine intervention in the creation of America, many did believe that they were guided by God as their writing testifies.

Day 56

  1. Finish reading Constitutional Government.

Day 57

  1. Read about Shay’s Rebellion, topic 3.
  2. Use the links to read the letters to James Madison from Thomas Jefferson and from George Washington.
  3. What do these letters show about their desires for the country’s central government? (answer, click and drag to reveal: Jefferson-  as little government as possible, weak central government “They may conclude too hastily that nature has formed man insusceptible of any other government than that of force, a conclusion not founded in truth or experience” Washington- strong government to protect the people from mob rule and anarchy “whereas a liberal, and energetic Constitution, well guarded & closely watched, to prevent encroachments”)

Day 58

  1. Finish your questions if you haven’t already.
  2. Read Letters from a Federal Farmer“Letter I: October 8, 1787.” Scroll down to see the letter. There are many. You are reading the first.
  3. There is wisdom in the this letter even for our present day.   What wisdom can be found in this quote? “It is natural for men, who wish to hasten the adoption of a measure, to tell us, now is the crisis—now is the critical moment which must be seized, or all will be lost: and to shut the door against free enquiry, whenever conscious the thing presented has defects in it, which time and investigation will probably discover.”
  4. Write a paragraph on why this technique works on people and what you can do to prevent yourself from being tricked by it.
  5. Your answers are due today. Score them as usual for content and clarity, clearly telling the reader what question is being answered. The questions are labeled with  how many points they are worth.
  6. Record your score out of 17.

Day 59

  1. Read over your questions for Days 59-68.
  2. Read about the Philadelphia Convention.
  3. Take a look at the Delegates to the Convention.
  4. Read James Madison’s “Federalist No. 10” (Take your time on this one.  It is not very long, but you will have to take your time and sometimes reread parts of it to understand what Mr Madison is saying.)

Day 60

  1. Read about the state’s plans, topic two.
  2. Start Reading the Constitution. Stop at Article 1, Section 6

Day 61

  1. Read the third topic, compromise reigns.
  2. Read about Congress Hall.
  3. Continue Reading the Constitution. Stop at Article 1, Section 9.

Day 62

  1. Watch the video on “The Constitution Convention: The Great Compromise.”
  2. Continue Reading the Constitution.  Stop at Article 2, Section 3.

Day 63

  1. Move your mouse over this map to show who ratified the Constitution when and by what vote.
  2. Which state was the first to ratify the Constitution? Which was the last? Which did so by the widest margin? Which by the closest margin?
  3. Read the excerpts from the Fedralist and Antifederalist Papers
  4. What were their views on taxation?
  5. Which side do you think you agree with? Why?

Day 64

  1. Read the section on “The Ratification of the Constitution.”
  2. Continue Reading the Constitution. Stop at Article 7 (before the Amendments)

Day 65

  1. Read about Washington being elected president, topic two.
  2. Read George Washington facts.
  3. Read George Washington’s First Inaugural Address.

Day 66

  1. Read about the Bill of Rights.
  2. Read the Bill of Rights or you may read them from the Constitution.
  3. Make a list of the 10 amendments and what rights they guarantee you.
  4. Keep in mind all that you learned about the reasons for the Revolution.  Do you recognize specific acts that were committed by the British?  How does your list compare to this list?

Day 67

  1. Reread the Second Amendment.  Look at the exact text and define the terms with what you have learned about this time in history.  Remember the English language is a changing language so you need to think about how people at this time would have defined these terms.   What was the militia?   Do you remember the minute men?  Why was a militia necessary to the security of a free State?  Why was the right of the people to keep and bear Arms so important?  This is a hotly debated amendment and rather than give my interpretation of this amendment, I would like you to discuss your answers with your parents.
  2. Learn the Bill of Rights numbers. Can you match them?
  3. Click on secondary and play the game.

Day 68

  1. You can take a look at the timeline again.
  2. Finish your answers.
  3. Finish Reading the Constitution, Amendments 11-27.
  4. Read this simple, clear version of these amendments.
  5. You questions are due. Read your teacher’s answers.
  6. Score for content and clarity according to the points listed on the questions. Total: 32 points

Day 69

  1. Look over your questions for Days 69-79.
  2. Read the first topic on Jefferson vs. Hamilton.
  3. Look through this page on continental money.
  4. What do you notice?
  5. Read about the “Origins of a System.”
  6. Remember to always be answering questions as you are able.

Day 70

  1. Watch the video on Hamilton vs. Jefferson. You can stop at 3:15.
  2. What is Hamilton’s monetary policy idea?
  3. What does Jefferson think?
  4. Who comes across looking like a good guy? a bad guy?
  5. Watch this video on Hamilton vs. Jefferson.
  6. What does this video say about Hamilton and debt?
  7. Do they seem the same or opposite? Always remember that even though history can seem like a bunch of facts, it’s always presented from a perspective. As an example, some textbooks make all Republican presidents sound like the greatest men who ever lived; other textbook make them out to be nothing but problems for the country.
  8. Does Hamilton come across looking like a good guy or a bad guy?
  9. Hamilton wanted states to pay their debts.
  10. However, he wanted them to do that by borrowing from the federal government, making them beholden to the federal government. In turn the federal government will have to borrow money from foreign countries.
  11. Read “Jefferson and Madison Create a Party.”
  12. Whom do you choose, Jefferson or Hamilton?
  13. What do you think about a strong central government and central banking, etc.? You don’t have to write this out unless it helps you form your thoughts. This is one for a dinner table conversation.

Day 71

  1. Read about the Federalists and the Democratic Republicans.
  2. Listen to 1/4 of George Washington’s Farewell Address. Stop at around 9:30. You can read along.

Day 72

  1. Watch the video on the French Revolution.
  2. Continue to listen to another 1/4 of George Washington’s Farewell Address. Start at 9:30. Stop around 19:00. You can read along.

Day 73

  1. Read the third topic on Washington’s farewell address and learn from the timeline.
  2. Continue to listen to another 1/4 of George Washington’s Farewell Address. Start at 19:00. Stop around 29:30. You can read along.

Day 74

  1. Read about the Whiskey Rebellion.
  2. Finish listening to George Washington’s Farewell Address. Start at 29:30. You can read along.
  3. Here’s the original speech. Try reading some of it.

Westward Expansion

Day 75

  1. Read the first topic on the XYZ affair.
  2. Read the biographical info about John Adams.
  3. We will be reading, “First Across the Continent” by Noah Brooks .  Here is a second version to choose from. I’ll be using the other to link to. You can download these as pdf or onto an ereader.
  4. Read chapter 1.

Day 76

  1. Read about the alien and sedition acts, second topic.
  2. Continue First Across the Continent by Noah Brooks .  Read chapter 2.

Day 77

  1. Look at the timeline. We’re getting to 1800 now.
  2. Look at these timelines from 1780 to 1810.
  3. Continue to read First Across the Continent.  Read chapter 3.

Day 78

  1. Read about the election of 1800.
  2. Read about the bargain between Hamilton and Jefferson.
  3. What was their bargain? Why do some consider it corrupt?
  4. Continue First Across the Continent.  Read chapter 4.

Day 79

  1. Read the biography of President Jefferson.
  2. You can explore our capital.
  3. Read chapters 5 and 6 from First Across the Continent.
  4. Your answers are due today. Score them for content and clarity according to the number of points listed for each question on the page. Total: 43 points.

Day 80

  1. Read about the Louisiana Purchase.
  2. Look at the map and you can look at the info on the Louisiana Purchase
  3. Read chapter 7 from First Across the Continent.

Day 81

  1. Read topic two, Lewis and Clark.
  2. Look at a map of their trip.
  3. Read chapter 8 from First Across the Continent.

Day 82

  1. Read the third topic presentation on the Aaron Burr Conspiracy.
  2. Look at the drawing of the duel.
  3. Read chapter 9 from First Across the Continent.

Day 83

  1. Listen to Jefferson’s 3rd Message to Congress.
  2. What are his thoughts on how the Native Americans should be dealt with?
  3. Read chapters 10 and 11 from First Across the Continent.

Day 84

  1. Read about Jefferson’s Embargo.
  2. Read chapter 12 from First Across the Continent.

Days 85, 86, 87, 88, 89, and 90

  1. Finish Reading  chapters 13-26 from First Across the Continent. You have five days to read 14 chapters.
  2. This is the end of the second quarter. It’s time to save some work for your portfolio. Hang onto your written answers.
  3. Complete your report card grade for this quarter.  (total points/total possible)

Day 91

  1. (If you are looking for your third quarter grading sheet, it’s found on the second quarter sheet on Day 46.)
  2. Read over your next set of Questions for Days 91-100. Answer them as you come across the answers.
  3. Read Sage’s War of 1812.

Day 92

  1. Read the second topic on the election of Madison.
  2. Read Madison’s bio.
  3. Click on two links at the top (the blue tabs) War and Flag.  War has three additional links and and Flag has three additional links. Read the material and answer the questions at the bottom of the page that correspond with the material covered.

Day 93   

  1. Read topic 3 on The War.
  2. Go through the timeline presentation or just click on the cannons to learn more about the war.
  3. Only if you are interested and have permission and if it’s still available, you can watch this show about the ancestry of stars. His ancestors had something to do with the War of 1812 which is why I am putting it here. Remember, when you are reading about history, you are reading about real people. What would it have been like to been at Fort McHenry?

Day 94

  1. Choose one of the following books to read. In both books you will learn what it was like to travel in the 1800’s. First you will read the book and then you will be writing a journal as a character. This project is due on Day 145. You need to plan how much you need each day so that you complete this assignment. There are about 30 days where you will be reminded to read your book. I will try to have less other reading on those days. Don’t wait until the last minute to finish your book!
  2. Start reading the book you chose for the journal project.

Day 95

  1. Read topic one presentation on The Era of Good Feelings.
  2. Continue reading your book.

Day 96

  1. Read the second topic on the Missouri Compromise.
  2. Continue reading book.

Day 97

  1. Read the third topic on John Marshall.
  2. Continue reading book.

Day 98

  1. Read about the Monroe Doctrine.
  2. Read Monroe’s words.
  3. Continue reading book.

Day 99

  1. Read about the Supreme Court.
  2. Can you take a case to the Supreme Court?
  3. Continue reading your book.

Day 100

  1. Read Sage’s James Monroe and the Era of Good Feeling.
  2. You should be done your questions.
  3. Read your teacher’s answers  and score yours.
  4. Record your score.

Day 101

  1. Read over your questions for Days 101-108.
  2. Read about the Growth of America.
  3. Read about Irish Immigration. You can learn more by reading the lyrics to No Irish Need Apply(No need to apply means there’s no chance of your being chosen, so there’s no reason to complete an application.)
  4.  Read and look at the pictures about the Castle Garden.

Day 102 

  1. Read about the Growth of Industry.
  2. Read these two different views of factory life from the Lowell Offering and The Harbinger.
  3. Scroll down this page to “Lowell Changes.” It’s under the Lowell Labor System which is under the map.
    • Make three observations about what’s happening in America based on the information given.
    • Record 6 points if you use the stats given to come up with three inferences about changes taking place in America.

Day 103

  1. Read about the effects of industry, the third topic.
  2. Study the timeline from 1805 to 1830. (More Dates)
  3. Continue reading your book.

Day 104

  1. Read about the Cotton Gin.
  2. Could you explain to someone what each of the tables of data shows?
  3. Read your book.

Day 105

  1. Read about the Westward Movement.
  2. Read all about the Conestoga Wagon.
  3. Read your book.

Day 106

  1. Read about innovative transportation.
  2. Explore the map on this page, Roads, Canals and Railroads. Move your mouse over each year on the map and watch the system of roads, canals and railroads develop.
  3. Read your book.

Day 107

  1. Read about the development of transportation.
  2. Answer these questions. What do you think?
  3. Read your book.

North/South Economy

Day 108

  1. Look at this timeline of the transportation revolution.
    • Choose two to read more about. Click on the T with the arrow over on the right of the topic.
  2. Finish your questions. Do research if necessary.
  3. Read your teacher’s answers and score yours.
  4. Record your score.
  5. Read your book.

Day 109

  1. Here is your next set of questions, Days 109-130. Make sure you work on this as you go along and not wait until the end.
  2. Read topic 1, Cotton is King.
  3. Continue reading your book.

Day 110

  1. Read topic 2, Southern Culture.
  2. Read this letter from a free slave. (Literature lesson: That’s an oxymoron, free slave, an expression where the words are opposites. Other examples are alone together, bitter sweet, awfully good, civil war.)
  3. Read the interview with W. L. Boost, ex-slave, pages 138-142. Keep clicking next to get through the pages. You will finish reading the interview on Day 111.

Day 111

  1. Read topic 3, Slaves.
  2. Study the slave/free state map. Then click on start and watch the expansion.
  3. What does the painting tell us about slave culture? (move your cursor over the painting)
  4. Finish reading the interview with W. L. Boost, ex-slave, pages 143-147.

Day 112

  1. Watch the lecture on the North. Click on number 3 (below the video) to jump to that section to start. That will make the lecture 30 minutes.
  2. Continue reading your book.

Day 113

  1. Read from The African-American Mosaic about abolition.
  2. Read David Walker’s appeal.
  3. Continue reading your book.

Day 114

  1. Read topic 1, the election of 1824.
  2. Read the biography of John Quincy Adams.
  3. What does the cartoon show?
  4. What does this lesson conclude about Adams? Did he win the election by corruption or not?

Day 115

  1. Continue reading your book.
  2. Read about “the corrupt bargain.”
  3. Here’s a quote about the corrupt bargain from Education Portal’s American History course. “[Clay would] help get Adams elected president only if Adams would name Clay Secretary of State. Clay believed that the job of Secretary of State was the perfect launching pad for his future presidential ambitions. Adams agreed, and the deal was struck.”
  4. That lesson assumes the corrupt bargain happened.
  5. Read this quote from a lesson from NROC’s history course:  “Since Adams was such a moral man, it is unlikely that the accusations of corruptness were accurate. However, Jackson’s supporters took the idea and ran with it, using it to launch their campaign for Jackson as president in the 1828 election, even as Adams was taking office in 1824. The Jacksonians’ efforts to derail Adams’ presidency were the primary cause of Adams serving only one presidential term.”
  6. This time the lesson assumes the bargain didn’t happen, making an inference based on what we know of Adams. However, the other course just calls it a fact when we don’t really know what happened behind closed doors.
  7. This is an example of a differing “facts” in history texts. History isn’t always as factual as it seems. History is always viewed from a perspective. In one of the lessons Jackson is viewed as doing wrong, and in the other, Adams.
  8. Our family used to live in Macedonia. Every time a different party won the election, the schools got new textbooks. Why? That party wanted their version of history taught!

Day 116

  1. Read topic 2, the election of 1828.
  2. Read Jackson’s address.
  3. Look at the map (make sure you click on each of the boxes.) Suffrage is about the right to vote. Many states had laws that only land owners could vote because they were viewed as having a stake in the community.
  4. Read the brief biography of Jackson.
  5. Read about the election of 1828.

Day 117

  1. Read Sage’s The Age of Jackson.
  2. Continue reading your book.

Day 118

  1. Read topic 3, the New Political Party.
  2. Look at the descriptions in the second section, Second Two-Party System Democrats v. Whigs, 1836 – 1850.
  3. Study the timeline from 1825 to 1840.
  4. Continue reading your book.

Day 119

  1. Read about the Tariff of 1828.
  2. Continue reading.

Day 120

  1. Read about the Whig Party. Use the two prominent links on the page.
  2. Read Sage’s Brief History of Texas.
    • Sometimes our current situation has a huge impact on how we view history. This is not necessarily a bad thing.  We can learn from mistakes made in the past, but it can cause us to misrepresent a historic event as well.     
    • Can you think of any current issues in our world that might affect how we see this time in history? 
    • In Education Portal’s American History course, the Americans are represented as deceitful lawbreakers who were out to take land from Mexico while the Mexicans are viewed as a bit naive. The Americans are viewed as being in control. Sage’s reading represents Americans as independent pioneers who moved into Texas in a loosely governed territory where they were for the most part left to manage their own affairs. The Mexicans are viewed as trying to control the situation, by limiting the number of Americans who could immigrate into the territory and having laws in place to make them more “Mexican.”  However these rules were were not enforced or might be viewed as impossible to obey. They were to adopt the Catholic religion, but there no priests in the province. They were to give up slavery, but lifetime indentured servitude was accepted. Is there really a difference between the two? They were to pay taxes, but there were no tax collectors in the province. The current issues on our border with Mexico and illegal immigration might be having an impact on the interpretation of this event.

Day 121

  1. Read topic two, South Carolina.
  2. Read this letter from Jackson to Van Buren.
  3. Continue reading your book.

Day 122

  1. Read Clay’s Compromise, the third topic.
  2. Continue reading.

Day 123

  1. Read about Henry Clay and the Missouri Compromise.
  2. Continue reading.

Day 124

  1. Read about 19th Century Banking.
  2. Take a look at some colonial money.
  3. Continue reading.

Day 125

  1. Read topic two, The Bank.
  2. Here are some pictures that were featured on bank notes.
  3. Continue reading.

Day 126

  1. Read topic three, Jackson and Bank War.
  2. Continue reading your book.

Day 127

  1. Reading day. Read your book.


Day 128   

  1. Read about Native Americans and the New Republic.
  2. Read this page about the Trail of Tears.
  3. Read these letters which are eyewitness accounts.

Day 129

  1. Read about the Indian Removal Act.
  2. Read the excerpts of Andrew Jackson’s Message to Congress.
  3. Read through this page on the Indian Removal Act. What’s the irony in the political cartoon?

Day 130

  1. Read topic three, Jackson and Van Buren.
  2. Read Martin Van Buren’s biography.
  3. Check your answers, Days 109-130 Answers.
  4. Record your score out of 25.

Day 131

  1. Here is your next set of topics to be writing about as you read each day.
  2. Read about Humanitarian Reforms.
  3. Read about Dorothea Dix.
  4. Continue reading.

Day 132

  1. Read topic 2, Social Reforms.
  2. View this cartoon and read the explanation.
  3. Continue reading.

Day 133

  1. Read topic 3, Women’s Rights.
  2. Read Elizabeth Cady Stanton’s Sentiments (stop when you reach the picture.)
  3. She’s a famous name in women’s rights.
  4. Continue reading.

Day 134

  1. Take the tour of American abolitionists.
  2. Read the biography of James Polk.

The West

Day 135

  1. Read topic one, (Manifest Destiny) The Oregon Country.
  2. Finish reading your book.
  3. This is the end of the third quarter. It’s time to save some work for your portfolio. Hang onto your written answers.
  4. Complete your report card grade for this quarter.  (total points/total possible)

Day 136(*)

  1. (*) Print out your final grading sheet or use the Excel version.
  2. Read topic two, the Annexation of Texas.
  3. Look at and read about the cartoon.
  4. Read about Presidents William Henry Harrison and John Tyler.
  5. You will be writing a journal based on your book that showed what it was like to travel in the 1800’s. You will write as a character from the book or as someone who would have been in the same time and place.
  6. Today you will choose a character. Write the character’s name, age, starting location, where your character will be heading, occupation (if applicable), family members, economic status, and anything else you can think of that you’d like to add. You could draw a picture if you like.
  7. Every day you’ll write an entry about your journey. Date each entry and tell what happened that day. Every day must be different and something must happen every day. “Nothing happened today” doesn’t count. The link is a how-to for excellent journal writing.
  8. This is how you will be graded. You will use this rubric. (The word “essay” should be “entry.”) Each day’s entry will be worth four points. Your score will be an average of the that day’s points in the different categories on the rubric.

Day 137

  1. Read topic three, Mexican American War.
  2. Read this article on the Mexican War.
  3. Write a journal entry. See Day 136 for directions.

Day 138

  1. Read about the California Gold Rush.
  2. Study the timeline to 1850.
  3. Write a journal entry. See Day 136 for directions.

Day 139

  1. Read the biography of President Zachary Taylor.
  2. Write a journal entry. See Day 136 for directions.


Day 140

  1. Read topic one, Slave Resistance.
  2. Read the biographical story of Henry Box Brown.
  3. View the image of Henry Box Brown.
  4. Write a journal entry. See Day 136 for directions.

Day 141

  1. Read topic two, Compromise of 1850.
  2. Learn something about President Millard Fillmore.
  3. Read Sage’s The Compromise of 1850. Read “The nation in 1850”
  4. Write a journal entry. See Day 136 for directions.

Day 142

  1. Read topic three, Uncle Tom’s Cabin.
  2. Read about Harriet Beecher Stowe.
  3. Write a journal entry. See Day 136 for directions.

Day 143

  1. Read about the Ostend Manifesto.
  2. Read the biography of Franklin Pierce.
  3. Write a journal entry. See Day 136 for directions.

Day 144

  1. Read topic one, (Approaching War) Kansas-Nebraska Act.
  2. Write a journal entry. See Day 136 for directions.

Day 145

  1. Listen to David Blight’s “Anti-Slavery Movements, Part 3” (Uncle Tom’s Cabin).
  2. Last day…Write a journal entry. See Day 136 for directions.
  3. Score your journal, up to 4 points for each entry. Use this rubric. (The word “essay” should be “entry.”) For each entry average the points scored.
  4. Add four points for your first day’s character description.
  5. Record your score out of 40.

Day 146

  1. Read topic two, Dred Scott Decision.
  2. Read about the Dred Scott ruling.
  3. Read the biography of President James Buchanan.

Day 147

  1. Read topic three, Lincoln Douglas Debate.
  2. Scroll down and read the second quote.
  3. Read Sage’s The House Dividing start at The Politics of Slavery in the 1850s.

Day 148

  1. Read about John Brown’s Raid.
  2. Read about these songs:

Day 149

  1. Read about abolitionists’ strategies. Click to “continue the tour” until you get to hymns and songs. That’s the last page.
  2. Continue reading. Start at top of the page and stop at the heading “The South’s Crisis of Fear.”

Day 150

  1. People memorize the Lincoln Douglas Debates and reenact them. There are student competitions where they do this. Here’s a championship reenactment.
  2. Finish reading. Start at “The South’s Crisis of Fear”. There’s some repetition of what you read a few days ago in here, so use your skimming skills where it’s not necessary to read through it carefully again.
  3. Finish your assignment.
  4. Read your teacher’s answers and score your assignment.
  5. Record your score out of 45.

The Civil War

Day 151*

  1. You will be writing a paper on the Civil War, about how it changed America. As you go through the chapters on the Civil War and its impact, be taking notes, copying down quotes, keeping a bibliography, etc. to help you with this assignment.
  2. Read about the Election of 1860.
  3. Read about southern secession.
  4. *Print out the detective log.
  5. Investigate the front line evidence. Fill in the chart. Instead of filling in vocabulary, fill in key words that will help you remember what that document said, such as shelling, cellar, fire. You are going to be comparing and contrasting the home front with the front line.

Day 152

  1. Read the biography of Abraham Lincoln.
  2. Investigate the home front evidence. Fill in the chart. Instead of filling in vocabulary, fill in key words that will help you remember what that document said, such as shelling, cellar, fire. You are going to be comparing and contrasting the home front with the front line.

Day 153

  1. Read about the Civil War.
  2. Click on next to read about Fort Sumter.
  3. Read about the 29th Regiment.
  4. Fill in the Venn  diagram comparing and contrasting the home front and the front lines.
  5. For your paper you are going to be looking for what changed as a result of the Civil War.
  6. Your paper must include at least three quotations.
  7. You will need at least one primary source and three secondary sources. (More is better.)
  8. Here is help in identifying the type of resource and how to record it in your bibliography.
  9. Keep track of your resources as you come across them. In your notes you need to know where the information came from.
  10. All sources should be cited in-text and on the works cited page. Any information gained from an outside source, whether quoted or not, must be properly cited. (http://www.broachweb.com)
    • Margins should be set at 1” on all four sides;
    • Standard fonts should be used and set at a rating of 10-12 points (no higher);
    • The paper should be at least five pages, typed and double-spaced, and no more than ten pages.

Day 154

  1. Read about military strategy.
  2. Explore these links:
  3. Look at this sample research paper and how it gives credit to where the information came from. This is how long your paper should be as well.
  4. You need to do the same.

Day 155

  1. Read topic two, the battles.
  2. Read Alice Williamson’s Diary.
  3. Could this timeline help you?
  4. Here are some areas to consider when looking at how the Civil War changed America: government, expansion, race relations, and economic development.

Day 156

  1. Read topic three, the economy.
  2. Make sure you are taking good notes and writing down your sources.

Day 157

  1. Read topic one, Lincoln and civil liberties
  2. Read part of his First Inaugural address. (If you choose, you only need to read from the 11th paragraph “I take the official oath to-day….” To “I trust this will not be regarded as a menace, but only as the declared purpose of the Union that it will constitutionally defend and maintain itself.”)
  3. Here are some links to online primary resources.

Day 158

  1. Read topic two, Emancipation Proclamation.
  2. Read the Emancipation Proclamation.
  3. Here are links to some other resources.

Day 159

  1. Read topic three, thirteenth ammendment.
  2. Look at this wanted poster.
  3. Make sure you consider the credibility of the resource you are using.
  4. Before you begin your writing, read over this writing advice.

Day 160

  1. Read about the election of 1864.
  2. Look at the results.
  3. Listen to campaign songs.
  4. Create an outline. Your paper and outline should be structured something like this. The more you put in the easier the writing will be.


Day 161

  1. Read topic two, effects of the war on the South.
  2. Read Lincoln’s second inaugural address.
  3. A paragraph has an introduction, supporting details and a conclusion. An essay has the same but each is its own paragraph instead of sentence. A long research paper will follow a similar structure but those supporting details are now each their own mini essay within the paper.
  4. Write your thesis and three main topic sentences that support your thesis.

Day 162

  1. Read about reconstruction.
  2. Read the biography of Andrew Johnson.
  3. Take a look at the sample research paper again at how it used references and citations.
  4. Start writing. Use double space. Remember to be specific, eg. what exact law. Important: Tell why something changed and the how something changed, not just the what changed.

Day 163

  1. Read topic two, the black codes.
  2. Read some of the Mississippi code (it’s the second one on the page).
  3. Read the first several paragraphs, at least, of this speech on the Black Codes.
  4. Keep writing. This paper is due on Day 175.

Day 164   

  1. Read topic three, congressional reconstruction.
  2. Use the links.
  3. Keep writing. Use your outline.

Day 165   

  1. Read topic one, impeachment of Johnson.
  2. Keep writing. Refer back to the assignment on Day 153 and the sample research paper as necessary.

Day 166

  1. Read topic two, the reconstructed South.
  2. Your paper must be at least five pages. The cover, notes and bibliography don’t count towards this!

Day 167

  1. Read topic three, reconstruction ends.
  2. Keep writing. Remember to be specific, eg. what exact law. Important: Tell why something changed and the how something changed, not just the what changed.

Day 168

  1. Read the biography of Ulysses S Grant.
  2. Keep writing. You’ll want to be finished on Day 171.

Day 169

  1. Read the biography of Rutherford B Hayes.
  2. Keep writing.

Day 170

  1. Keep writing.

Day 171

  1. Finish writing.

Day 172

  1. You should be finished writing.
  2. Read and edit your paper.

Day 173

  1. Type up your cover page, notes and bibliography if they are not yet complete.
  2. Here is help in identifying the type of resource and how to record it in your bibliography.
  3. Here is the sample research paper.

Day 174

  1. Read and edit your paper.

Day 175

  1. Your paper is due today.
  2. Here is your grading rubric (page 1) (adapted from here by adding point values). When it talks about “major references,” that means sources that are agreed upon as true. Joe Shmoe’s blog where he gives his opinion, is not a strong resource and has not been approved by experts in the field. When it talks about style, you will see if the student follows the guidelines given to create a title page, notes and a bibliography as shown in the example and reference links.
  3. If you wrote a double spaced, normal sized font paper of at least five full pages (for the writing part), add five points to your total.
  4. Record your score out of 100.

Day 176

  1. Prepare a summary of your paper to present to an audience.
  2. You can receive up to 5 points for clarity of content. Does the audience come away feeling like they understand your thesis? You can also receive up to 5 points for clarity of speech. Did you present with confidence, projection, enunciation, poise and fluidity?

Day 177

  1. Orally present a summary of your paper.
  2. Have your audience score your presentation.
  3. You can receive up to 5 points for clarity of content. Does the audience come away feeling like they understand your thesis? You can also receive up to 5 points for clarity of speech. Did you present with confidence, projection, enunciation, poise and fluidity?
  4. Record your score out of 10.

Days 178 and 179

  1. Read through your questions and answers as well as any notes to prepare for the final exam.

Day 180*

  1. *Print out your answer sheet. (The answer sheet’s answer possibilities are A-D, but the test answers alternate between A-D and F-J. Keep this in mind when completing the answer sheet.)
  2. Take your final exam. You will do numbers 1-21.
  3. Grade your final. Add one point because you were not taught to this test.
  4. Double your points and record your score out of 40. (potential for extra credit)

If you are planning on taking the CLEP, there are study resources below.

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CLEP resources:

  • study guide
  • education portal
  • free practice exam  Practice, review what you got wrong before closing down. Take it again. Review what you got wrong…
  • The study guide site offers other suggested resources if you feel they are needed.