What was the Declaration of Independence all about?

  • Journal #1 Instructions
    In this course, you will complete a series of History Journal  entries, which you will submit twice during the term. Refer to the  Assignments and Course Schedule on Syllabus Page 2 for due dates.
    Journal #1
    In this first journal activity, you may write about any topic(s) of your choice, but it is best to use the textbook to study.
  • For this activity, topics should address content covered in Chapters 1 – 8 in the textbook.
    • It is expected that, at a minimum, you are reading the assigned textbook chapters.
    • You are encouraged to read collateral historical writings on topics covered in the textbook.
  • This activity will consist of 10 separate journal entries; you will have a total of 20 entries by the end of the course.
  • Each separate entry should:
    • contain a minimum of 120 words.
    • consist of a summary, paraphrase, and synthesis of material you are reading/studying in this course.
    • be written in your own words – do not quote the work of others verbatim.
    • discuss the subject matter that you are studying – do not simply agree/disagree.
  • Your study involves, first and foremost, learning the nation’s  past; doing so requires a review of previously published studies, so you  are encouraged to conduct research using outside resources, but be sure  to draft your journal entries in your own words.
    • Direct quotations should not be used; citations are not necessary.
    • Do not copy/paste information from any source.
    • No citations
  •    Grading Criteria for Journals
    You will make two separate journal submissions during this course. Each submission will be worth 50 points.
  • Each submission will consist of 10 separate journal entries.
  • Save the file containing your first set of 10 entries in .rtf (rich text format), and name the file Journal #1.
  • For clarity and ease, please title your entries as Entry 1, Entry 2, Entry 3, etc.
  • Each separate journal entry should be a minimum of 120 words in length.
  • Each entry should pertain to United States History prior to 1877.
  • Each entry should be written in your own words.
  • Submission of only half the required length/number of journals will earn half of the available points.
  • To gain a better understanding of journal entry expectations, please review the sample entry below:
    Entry 1
    What was the Declaration of Independence all about? It was  written by Thomas Jefferson but was probably not signed on July 4th,  1776. It was written after hostilities had broken out. Lexington,  Concord, Bunker Hill had taken place a year earlier. Why so late? The  reason might be that the colonies were not yet united in their response  to Britain. Many did not want to leave the empire only a few years  earlier they had boasted about. Also, taking on the powerful British  empire with trained troops seemed almost impossible. Several of the  condemnations in the declaration were not true, and they were addressed  to King George III rather than Parliament, which had the real power. It  is quite possible that the colonial leadership did not want to attack a  representative institution even though it was hardly representative of  the people of Britain. Still, the declaration won widespread approval  and helped to unite the colonists.
    Note: You will notice that this entry is greater than 120 words in length.
  • Keep in mind that 120 words is the minimum length.
  • There are no “right or wrong” answers, and it is not required that your instructor “agree” with your entry.
  • You will be graded on how your entry demonstrates that you have read and thought about the material.
  • You are encouraged to use the journal entries as study aids for the exams.
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