This course explores the experiences and values of America's diverse peoples. Students in it not only expand their knowledge of events of American history but also deepen their understanding of the meaning of those events in people's lives. Students learn how the social categories of race, gender, and class affected individual Americans' identities and opportunities; how America's natural environment shaped and was shaped by Americans' human culture; and how Americans' idea and ideals both influenced and reflected their economic, political, and social institutions. To investigate these themes, students read writings by modern historians and analyze a wide variety of historical sources from the past. American Experiences I focuses on the period from European colonization through the end of Reconstruction.