The mission of the Vermont Commons School Social Studies Department is to empower students to be effective citizens and change-makers in their communities and their world through the study of historical and current affairs. Engagement with the local community is paired in 6th grade with an experiential history of Vermont. 7th Grade builds a platform for future historical study through the Big History curriculum. The 8th through 10th grades take the long view of human history, spread out sufficiently to allow a deep digging into the lessons of human civilization, as well as the frequent opportunity to connect the past to today. Juniors and Seniors take joint electives in various topics in the autumn semester, ranging from U.S. elections to Contemporary Chinese History, to civil disobedience studies. In the spring of 11th grade, Juniors take an advanced seminar in US History, while the 12th graders have a Senior Seminar on a topic jointly selected with the Social Studies faculty.