U.S. History: From the Pre-Columbian Era through Reconstruction

From: $98.00 / month for 8 months

Grades:  9th–12th

Class:  Thu 11:00 am–12:00 p.m. ET

Dates:  Aug 26, 2024–May 9, 2025

Prepaid:  $699

Instructor:  Nate Noorlander


Course Description

U.S. History Syllabus coming soon

(Seating is limited. Students need to attend live classes, keep their cameras on during classand contribute to this community of scholars. It also helps to have a sense of humor with the teacher and their fellow students 🙂)

This is a 2-semester program combining two U.S. History courses from The Nomadic Professor: To Begin the World Over Again: from the pre-Columbian Americas to the ratification of the Constitution, and The Noise of Democracy: from Washington’s Presidency to the end of Reconstruction. The course will be taught by Nomadic Professor co-founder, Nate Noorlander. 

This course was designed with two big goals in mind: (1) to help the student become a master of American history, from Christopher Columbus through Ulysses S. Grant, and (2) to help the student become a master of source material from primary historical sources to contemporary sources of all kinds—Internet articles, social media posts, political speeches, and everything between. Students will learn the complex story of the American past, alongside the ability to think of history in terms of evidence and claims, more than black-and-white categories like “true” and “false.” They’ll be engaged by a college professor—The Nomadic Professor himself—bringing them on-location historical mini-lessons from all over the globe (featuring backdrops from Ecuador to Mississippi to Belgium to India, and dozens more!), while being guided through all the fascinating stories and their implications by an experienced high school teacher.

History is the place to go for nuance, context, epistemic humility, and concentrated, deliberate efforts to get things right. This course will try to achieve that compelling and engrossing version of the subject!

Course Structure

Students will be required to come to the weekly 1-hour live class prepared with the assigned work for that week. This will include the weekly reading and on-location videos, the end-of-unit pre-recorded document-based lessons, as well as the accompanying notes and assignments. All assignments for the week should be submitted in Canvas prior to that week’s live class, in order to verify that the student is ready to meaningfully ask questions and contribute to class discussion. 

This is a 32-week course. Students should plan on approximately 1 hour of work per school day, and up to 1.5 hours a day for limited stretches of time depending on the reading and source material for a given week.

Who should enroll?

This class is designed for students following an Honors track in grades 9-12. As an Honors course it will push students to think deeply and carefully, and perhaps to engage with the material with the kind of insight that comes from being interested in a subject, rather than merely doing what’s required.

Students need to plan on attending live classes with their cameras on. Our work will be most productive when we can see each other, talk to each other, and focus for our limited time together. Students do not need to be experts in history, experts in writing, or experts in source analysis to take this course, but to get the most out of it they should want to be here.

Technology Requirements

  • High speed, broadband Internet
  • Web cam, sound card, and microphone (for live sessions)
  • Streaming video capabilities to watch recorded lectures
  • PDF editing software that will allow you to type into and save a PDF form

Evaluation and Feedback

I will be available by email as well as prearranged video call during available work hours M-F (my work hours are 10am-6pm EST, M-F). Video calls will be set for default 15-minute windows. While I will reach out where I see a need or a problem, students who are struggling should take the initiative to openly engage with me and their classmates. Students will have access to my calendar to see open slots for video-call feedback and questions. I reserve the right to combine one-on-one meetings into small-group meetings where appropriate. Usually a video call will need to be scheduled at least a day in advance.

Students will receive a rubric with comments in response to all written work. Quizzes will be electronically assessed with built-in feedback.


Parental support will significantly improve the results of most students. Parents are welcome to reach out to me directly with questions, or be present during prearranged video calls with their student(s). I can be reached at nnoorlander@aimacademy.online, and you can expect a response within 48 hours. However, please bear in mind that this is an honors-level high school course, so students should also be capable of taking their own initiative in most cases. I encourage parents who have questions that should come from their students to push the student to ask the question on their own.

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Instructor Bio

Nate Noorlander

In college, Nate Noorlander double-majored in philosophy and history education. After a stint as a project manager with a disaster repair company, he moved to Beijing, China, where he taught IGCSE and A Level history at the Cambridge International Curriculum Center of Beijing Normal University. He also spent time touring India and trekking in Nepal. Worn out by the Beijing air, Nate moved home with his family and taught English and history at Mountainville Academy and then the American International School of Utah. At AISU, he developed mini-courses in boredom and awareness (probably close to what many people call mindfulness) based on Heidegger’s ideas about technology and Nicholas Carr’s ideas about what the internet does to our brains, areas of study that he finds compelling. Contact: nnoorlander@aimacademy.online


All classes taught by Nate Noorlander