Upper School History
At Boston Trinity Academy we study history because understanding the past helps us to navigate the present. Sailors do not get from one harbor to the next by watching the water as it passes beneath their bow. Rather, they look for lighthouses and fixed points on the horizon. Neither do good students of history navigate life by reacting on the spot to the flow of sensational news as it ricochets across the internet. They view current events and future possibilities in light of a discernible, relevant past. Our investment in learning how to think historically pays lifelong dividends, equipping us to be stronger and more enlightened citizens in a global community.
- Humanities 9: The Development of Western Civilization
- History 10: World History and Current Issues
- History 11: AP European History
- History 12: United States History - Evidence and Records
Being rooted in the tradition of liberal arts education, Boston Trinity Academy believes it is important for students to not only learn various disciplines, but to be able see the interconnectedness of the disciplines. This allows students to synthesize various streams of thought to better understand a topic and find more meaningful solutions.
To facilitate this way of thinking, Upper School students take Humanities 9 during their freshman year. This course (2½ credits) integrates English, History, and Biblical Studies and explores themes of Western Civilization from literary, historical, and biblical perspectives.
Humanities 9 addresses the question, “What does it mean to be human?” Students explore this question by studying literature, drama, historical texts, primary sources, and the biblical narrative. They learn about the origins of early Western culture by reading Homer’s The Odyssey and simultaneously examining the lives of Abraham, Jacob, and Moses. They compare and contrast the Pax Romana with the gospel of Matthew and the history of the early church. Finally, they pursue the transforming effects of Christianity on both the Roman and Germanic cultures, from which emerge a revolutionary idea of what it means to be human.
World History and Current Issues introduces students to the history, geography, and cultures of five regions of the world: Latin America, Africa, India, the Middle East, and East Asia. After an introduction to economics as a key lens through which scholars evaluate current events, the course moves chronologically through five hundred years of history helping students understand the impact of the past on particular issues in these regions today. While researching primary sources, students write analytical papers on such topics as social problems within the caste system of India, the HIV crisis in postcolonial Africa, and immigration challenges in North America. The course equips students with the intellectual curiosity and humility needed to investigate the question: Who is my neighbor?
AP European History students analyze and assess the distinctive nature of modern society as it emerged from medieval Christian Europe. By studying the experiences, arguments, and responses of those involved in the dramatic events from the Renaissance to our radically globalized contemporary world, students are challenged to develop their own perspectives and are better equipped to explore questions of historical identity for themselves. Students will be well prepared to take the College Board AP examination in May, but they may also take the course for non-AP history credit.
United States History: Evidence and Records runs like a college seminar. It focusses on three key themes including faith, liberty, and empire, and moves from the experiment of Colonial America to the complex global present. Students focus on “doing history” while writing eight research papers. They read extensively from original key documents and sharpen their analysis in the context of small-group discussions. Drawing on this collective work, they then write evidence-based essays tackling one major question relevant to each period.