On this page, you will find information about the Global Studies Distinction, as well as course descriptions for all classes taught here which have a global component..
The Global Distinction
The GSP Global Distinction demands a high level of commitment and involvement from accepted students in addition to other academic and extracurricular activities. The students will receive a Global Distinction on their high school diploma.
*Please note that all Distinction candidates must attend meetings and activities of the Global Citizenship Club.
EXPECTATIONS -- GSP Distinction students will:
Demonstrate proficiency and confidence in a second language (minimum of three years of foreign language including at least two consecutive years of the same language)
Attain knowledge of – and show an appreciation for – cultural differences
Examine contemporary issues from multiple perspectives
Engage in community service with open-mindedness and humility
Contribute with energy and spirit to the GSP community of learners
Share their expertise and enthusiasm with the broader Tahanto community
Actively promote global understanding and the peaceful resolution of conflicts
Achieve personal growth through reflection
Strive to realize their full potential to lead as global citizens
There is a travel requirement for all Distinction candidates. Please see the "International Opportunities" link at the top of this page, or click here. If a student is unable to travel on the trips offered by Tahanto, they may complete their own equivalent travel experience. There are minimum standards -- please talk to your GSP Advisor or refer to the handbook for more information.
Students are encouraged to apply in freshman or sophomore year. Applications will be reviewed by Department Chairs and students will be notified of their decision. Applicants who are not accepted in freshman year are welcome to reapply sophomore year.
The benefits of the GSP are not limited to club members or Distinction candidates. Our increased focus on global issues and global citizenship has transformed the general education curriculum as well. Traditional classes such as History, English, and Biology have devoted more attention to the global components of their discipline. What's more, new, innovative and exciting courses such as The Nature of Being have drawn students into a greater awareness of higher level thinking, 21st century skills, and the ties that bind us to our neighbors around the globe. Below is a list of courses with a global component, on offer for all Tahanto students... **Please refer to the Program of Studiesfor full course descriptions and prerequisites.
THE NATURE OF BEING, HONORS (5 Credits, Honors): This course will provide a wonderful opportunity for students to blend skills developed in each academic discipline offered at Tahanto. Students will explore the history of various civilizations’ attempts to define the universe and humankind’s place within it through such vehicles as religion, philosophy, artistic expression, mathematics, and science. Topics to be examined include: substance, quality, relation; pluralism and monism; appearance and reality; the identities of things and persons; universals and particulars; space and time.
MUSIC HISTORY (2.5 Credits): Music History runs second semester and will study the lives of composers around the world and their impact on the music of their own culture/country as well as globally. Materials for this course would be reliable internet websites. Also, recordings of music will be created.
CERAMICS I (5 Credits): The first part of the course will focus on hand-building techniques, surface design, and glazing. The second part will focus on use of the pottery wheel and creatively using clay to create sculptural and functional pottery. Topics of focus will include art history, art criticism/analysis, and aesthetic awareness. The study of pottery from other cultures will be emphasized.
CERAMICS II (2.5 or 5 Credits): This class is designed to engage students in more advanced ceramic techniques and projects. Students will develop and enhance skills learned in ceramics I class, as well as refine and experiment with new materials and techniques.
GLOBAL ART (2.5 Credits): A semester course emphasizing importance and meaning of art in world cultures. Students will explore styles and techniques from diverse cultures and time periods such as Latin American bark paintings, Japanese lanterns, and Moroccan textiles. Students “travel” from country to country, building an extensive global visual vocabulary.
THE 21ST CENTURY STUDENT: SOCIALLY SAVVY, GLOBALLY CONNECTED (2.5 Credits): This course blends together the information, media and technology skills students need to be successful in the 21st Century with the interpersonal skills needed to be successful in college, the workplace, and in life in general. It explores one’s character development, leadership capabilities and ethics as we learn how to work best with others, whether they are across the hall, or across the world. Students will use these newfound skills when interacting with others both online and in person. Students will develop both team and individual projects that are interdisciplinary in nature. We will explore such diverse topics as: personality testing, possible occupations, interview protocol, website creation and evaluation, copyright, photo retouching, email scams and social network safety and other current topics of critical interest.
ENGLISH IV, HONORS (5 Credits, Honors): This course is designed for motivated students who anticipate enrolling in a four-year college program. English IV at all levels, but particularly at Honors, focuses on world, ethnic and women’s literature, and provides a solid background in the world intellectual, social, political and economic trends and history and how they have shaped literature and ideas. Heavy emphasis is placed on the masters of British literature – Bronte, Eliot, Shakespeare, Milton and Wilde to name a few – but selections also include authors from around the world such as Conrad, Camus, Marquez, Hurston and others. This course is also designed to vie intensive training in compositional skills and the acquisition of a personal writing style, in preparation for college. A computer writing laboratory is a mainstay of the entire English IV program.
ENGLISH IV, CP (5 Credits, CP): This course has the same focus as Honors, but at an intermediate level. It, too, will prepare diligent students of above-average and average ability for entrance to two and four-year colleges and vocational schools. As with Honors, the emphasis is on world literature. Compositional skills are further developed.
COLLEGE-BOUND ORGANIZATION AND GLOBAL RESEARCH (2.5 Credits): This course also offers students the opportunity to access, evaluate, and write about information from untraditional and international sources, such as television, movies, streaming videos, YouTube, blogs, and online interviews, journals, and magazines. Essential writing components such as strong thesis statements and topic sentences, appropriateness and proper citation of evidence, paragraphing, the use of transitions, proper punctuation, the clear articulation of ideas, will be stressed. Students also examine contemporary literature often comparing it to different media adaptations. And of course, students will develop the ability to clearly articulate their own ideas in writing. Course materials will be mostly current, non-fiction articles and contemporary media.
WORLD LANGUAGES - French and Spanish: The Tahanto Regional Middle/High School has always recognized the need to produce a sense of global citizenship. The world language teachers see the formal study of a language as necessary for expert knowledge of the language itself and also as a means by which the student can gain an understanding of the world and its cultures. The language program has modern efficient techniques of instruction with sequential texts, visual aids, workbooks, audio and video supplements. Student assessment is an integral part of the learning process.
FOOD, CULTURE AND SOCIETY (2.5 Credits): Throughout the ages, food choices have been influenced by six primary factors: food availability, technology, socio-economic class, religion, politics, seasons and climate. This course offers students the opportunity to study and analyze the effect of culture and food and the relationship of diet to good health within each society. Students will discover, share, and develop an appreciation for diverse tastes passed from generation to generation within cultures all around the world. Students will read about cultures, and prepare various international dishes.
EARTH, ENVIRONMENT, SPACE, and SOCIETY, CP (5 Credits, CP): This multidisciplinary course is an exploration of the interactions between humans, our Earth, other living and nonliving features of our planet, and the universe at large. The course begins with a look from a scientific perspective at what is often called “Big History”, which is a study of the evolution of humanity and its Earthly environment starting all the way back with the first instant of time at the Big Bang. It then proceeds through the formation of the first stars, followed by galaxies, our solar system, planets, moons, and planetary atmospheres. By the end of the first semester, students will have gained a comprehensive understanding of the evolution of our planet as it was when life first arose. During the second semester, the arrival of life and its many varied impacts on the planet will be covered, starting with early simple prokaryotes and culminating in the highly complex and interactive biosphere we have today. Along the way, the course covers mankind’s exploration of the history of our planet, including an extensive study of the exploration of outer space by our species. The course culminates with a close look at the day to day interactions of humanity with our planet, its geological features, and its atmosphere. Climate and weather are studied in this context. The course is conducted in a seminar-based format, with many individual and group projects and significant classroom discussions of the materials learned. Classroom participation is expected and required. This course does NOT have a significant mathematics component, so students who enjoy science but have difficulties with math may find this course especially appealing.
ASTRONOMY (2.5 Credits): Runs daily, first semester only. Astronomy is the study of the universe outside of the immediate environment of the Earth and its atmosphere. From its beginnings in ancient times through the present, students will learn what and how mankind has learned about our solar system, as well as distant stars, galaxies, space and time. Students will learn the widely varied techniques of astronomical observation and space exploration, including a discussion of many space missions conducted by NASA and international space agencies. The makeup and life cycles of stars, galaxies, and planets will be examined, as will such exciting new topics as black holes, exo-planets, Dark Matter and Dark Energy. Students will engage in some classroom labs as well as multiple research projects. Optional night sky observations will be scheduled, weather permitting. This course runs daily, semester 1 as part of the Earth, Environment, Space and Society course, space permitting.
WORLD HISTORY II, CP (5 Credits, CP): This class will cover the basic content and concepts of the development of human history from c.1500 to the present. The topics and goals are similar to the Honors description. This course, however, will be supplemented with a series of frequent but shorter writing assignments.
WORLD HISTORY II, HONORS (5 Credits, Honors): World History II outlines the development of the human experience from c.1500 to present. The study of major world societies from 1500 will begin with a short review of the previous year’s study. In addition, the study will include consideration of United States individuals and events that stirred worldwide expectations of independence and the development of a constitutional government. The development of student research and analytical skills will be demonstrated by the assignment of frequent written assignments, reports, and a major thesis paper.
ADVANCED PLACEMENT EUROPEAN HISTORY (5 Credits, AP): The AP course in European history is intended for qualified students who wish to complete classes equivalent to college introductory courses in European history. The study of European history since 1450 introduces students to culture, economic, political and social developments that played a fundamental role in shaping the world. In addition to providing a basic narrative of events and movements, the goals of AP European history are to develop (a) an understanding of some of the principal themes in modern European history, (b) an ability to analyze historical evidence and historical interpretation, and (c) an ability to express historical understanding in writing. Students will be expected to take the AP Exam.
GLOBAL CONTEMPORARY ISSUES (2.5 Credits): This is a first semester course in which we will take a historical and contemporary look at issues in international politics, U.S. foreign relations, U.S. domestic policy, and the global economy. This course provides students an opportunity to familiarize themselves with the issues that frequent newspapers, television news, and other popular media and fuel the controversies that both divide our population here in the United States and around the globe. The course will be flexible in nature to accommodate significant current events, but the general direction of the class will be to study how the world developed to what it is today and where it is going next. In addition to the course content, the common core standards will be addressed throughout all units.
NONVIOLENT MOVEMENTS IN THE MODERN WORLD (2.5 Credits): This is a second semester course; the focus will be about current and historical movements to create change in the world—without war. We will learn about Gandhi, the Danish resistance, MLK, Mandela and apartheid, the Chinese Democracy movement of 1989, Arab spring, Burma and Aung San Suu Kyi, Peace activism in New England, and contemporary peace-making in war zones (Palestine and Afghanistan). Students will develop an understanding about the issues, such as corruption, dictatorships, and economic injustice, and will learn about the strategies to combat them, including protests, blockades, hunger strikes, and boycotts.
CONTEMPORARY AMERICAN ISSUES (2.5 Credits): This course will provide students with a framework and models for analyzing current issues. The critical issues facing the world may change yearly, but this course will provide the students with critical-thinking skills by defining problems, collecting data and offering solutions. The course incorporates a book updated yearly and will also make use of CNN broadcasts and news journals.
INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS (5 Credits, CP/Honors): International Relations is a course offered to all students at Tahanto Regional High School, grades 10-12. The primary goals of this elective are to first, prepare students for citizenship when it comes to understanding the role the United States plays in world affairs. Second, students successfully completing this course will be cognizant of and sensitive to the requirements of changing realities in the international community. The focus is on developing an appreciation for the fundamental concepts that govern relations among nations, and take a student world view beyond the community to develop and understanding of why nations behave the way they do. Students will gain an appreciation for the role the United States has played in world affairs, as well as the way students can exercise their rights and responsibilities as citizens as they help determine what role their nation plays in world affairs in the future. Project based work where students apply reasoning and problem solving skills to analyze important foreign policy issues will be a critical component of assessing student progress during the course. Students will also be required to use information, media and technology effectively to complete class work and group projects. Key units are built around current events in world affairs, but always include introductory units on the key concepts involved with international relations, the relationship between the Constitution and Foreign Policy, the United Nations, and the historical background of international crises and conflicts.
AP PSYCHOLOGY (5 Credits, AP): The purpose of the AP Psychology course is to introduce students to the systematic and scientific study of behavior and mental processes of human beings and animals. Students are exposed to the psychological facts, principles and phenomena associated with the major subfields within psychology. They also learn about the methods psychologists use in their science and practice.
PSYCHOLOGY, HONORS (5 Credits, Honors): This Honors course involves a deeper and more thorough explanation of the study of human thought and behavior. More time is devoted to hands on research and experiments. Topics covered are learning and memory, research and statistics, social psychology, life span issues, neuroscience and abnormal psychology. Understanding of self and how people interact with others are enhanced in group work, journal writing and role-play. Movie clips to demonstrate how the artistic world views people and their adjustment to others and to society will be used. Textbook, journal articles and popular fiction will be read.
PSYCHOLOGY (2.5 Credits): This class is an introduction to the basic concepts of psychology. Areas included will be: personality and behavioral development; intelligence; heredity/environment; frustration and conflict resolution; personality development with specific reference to the young adult; and theories of conditioning. Lectures, case studies, field trips, oral reports, research papers, debates, and audio-visual aids will be used.
ECONOMICS (5 Credits, Honors): Limited to juniors and seniors, the first part of this class is intended to provide the student with an overview of the field of economics. The historical impact of philosophers such as Smith, Malthus and Ricard will be presented. It will offer the subject matter tools of analytical economics to the problems of the changing times: inflation, growth, pricing, income and foreign trade. The second part of this class will have an emphasis on the study of the market mechanism and how it works. It is intended to illustrate to the student that the critical problems that our society faces are related to responsible conduct in the area of economics. It is the intent (subject to change) to offer Economics in non-election years starting in 2013-2014 (school years 13-14, 15-16, 17-18, etc..). In 2013-2014 and in election years American Government will be taught (school years 11-12, 12-13, 14-15, 16-17, etc.).