Uncle Sam and You

Complete Middle School Civics and Government Curriculum

 Curriculum PackageAre you looking for a U.S. civics and government curriculum for your middle school student that is complete and easy to use? Uncle Sam and You is a one-year course centered in God's Word that makes learning about our country exciting for homeschooling students and parents.

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Who Can Use It

Authors Ray and Charlene Notgrass designed the curriculum for students to use successfully in 5th grade, 6th grade, 7th grade, or 8th grade. It combines the flexibility and richness of a literature-based unit study approach with the simplicity of a textbook-based approach.

Daily lessons answer questions such as these: How do elections work? What does the President do all day? Who decides where stop signs go? What is Labor Day? Your student will learn about elected leaders and everyday citizens who have important roles to fill in making our country work. With the lessons planned for you, you can enjoy learning civics with your student, or your student can use the curriculum independently.

What's Included

The Uncle Sam and You Curriculum Package includes everything you need for a successful study. The course is flexible, so you can choose the assignments and activities that work best for your child.

  • Two beautiful hardbound books feature engaging lessons with hundreds of colorful photographs and historic illustrations.
  • Each unit includes Bible study, vocabulary, and creative activities.
  • Holiday lessons explore the history of community celebrations and feature hands-on project ideas.
  • A book of primary source documents reveals how people have thought about our country in the past.

We suggest eight literature titles that coordinate with the lessons and enhance your student's understanding of different aspects of civics and government. We also offer optional review activities and tests.

Watch our intro video and keep reading to learn how the curriculum works, see sample lessons, and read what parents are saying.

Quick Overview

Uncle Sam and You is a one-year course that covers civics and government--how our country works and how individual people make things happen at the national, state, and local level. The material is divided into 150 daily lessons with clear instructions on what to do each day. Many students will be able to follow the instructions on their own, and you can be involved as much or as little as you wish.

Uncle Sam and You Part 1 and Part 2 are full-color, richly illustrated hardcover books that include the lessons to read and instructions for using the other components. You do not need a separate teacher's manual. You can choose the assignments you want your child to complete. For example, you might expect an 8th grader to do all of the suggested assignments while a 5th grader might only complete a few. The choice is yours.

If you prefer a video overview, watch authors Ray and Charlene Notgrass explain how the components work together as they walk you through a sample unit from the curriculum.

What's In the Curriculum Package

The Uncle Sam and You Curriculum Package includes these four books:

    Uncle Sam and You Part 1

    Uncle Sam and You Part 1

    This book has 75 lessons for the first semester. These lessons explore America's founding documents, patriotic symbols, political campaigns and elections, U.S. presidents, Congress, international relations, and fifteen holidays from Independence Day to Inauguration Day.

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    Uncle Sam and You Part 2

    Uncle Sam and You Part 2

    This book has 75 lessons for the second semester. These lessons explore the military, state and local governments, Native American governments, first responders, the court system, economics, communication, other topics about how Americans work together, and fifteen holidays from Martin Luther King Jr. Day to Father’s Day.

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    The Citizen's Handbook

    The Citizen's Handbook

    This is a collection of primary sources related to American government, politics, and civics, such as letters, memoirs, speeches, articles, songs, and poems. The book also includes Virtue Stories about how Americans have served and sacrificed for the benefit of others.

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    Uncle Sam and You Answer Key

    Uncle Sam and You Answer Key

    Includes answers for the vocabulary assignments, the Student Workbook, and the Lesson Review.

    Look Inside


Optional Resources

We offer two optional consumable books to help measure your child's understanding of the material. You can choose to use one, both, or neither. We also offer a literature package with eight recommended titles.

    Uncle Sam and You Student Workbook

    Uncle Sam and You Student Workbook

    This book has crosswords, find-a-words, matching, drawing assignments, and other handwork activities which review and reinforce information learned in the daily lessons. It also has weekly tests.

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    Uncle Sam and You Lesson Review

    Uncle Sam and You Lesson Review

    This book has daily lesson review questions, literature review questions, and weekly tests.

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    Uncle Sam and You Literature Package

    Literature Package

    These eight biographies and historical novels are assigned in the Uncle Sam and You curriculum to give your student a richer perspective on various topics studied.


What the Lessons Are Like

Uncle Sam and You is divided into 30 units with four regular lessons plus a holiday lesson. You can complete the curriculum in one year by doing one lesson per day for 150 days during your school year. While this course is designed for middle school students, younger children can listen to the lessons and participate in suggested family activities.

Your child can read the daily lessons independently, or you can read them aloud. The lessons are filled with color and black-and-white historical photographs, illustrations, and artwork.

At the end of each regular (non-holiday) lesson is a list of about four to six activities. Students do not have to complete all of these. You know your child best, so you can choose which activities work well for the age and ability of your student.

Depending on how many activities you assign, most students will need 45-90 minutes to complete one lesson. The exact activities vary from day to day, but they include:

  • Thinking Biblically assignments
  • Creative writing assignments
  • Vocabulary assignments
  • Short research assignments to look something up or ask a family member
  • Assignments to draw a picture or take a photograph
  • Reading assignments from The Citizen's Handbook or a literature title
  • Assignments in the Student Workbook or Lesson Review

Uncle Sam and You Activities Sample

An important part of civics is celebrating holidays with family, friends, and communities. Since families who homeschool can schedule their school year in many different ways, we designed Uncle Sam and You so that you can choose when to study the various holidays. If you start the curriculum in January, you don’t want to study Thanksgiving in April! We arranged the holidays in chronological order from Independence Day to Inauguration Day in Part 1 and from Martin Luther King Jr. Day to Father’s Day in Part 2.

Each holiday lesson has a corresponding family activity. These activities include craft and art projects, themed meals, and other multi-age activities. Your student may need extra time for Uncle Sam and You on the day you do the family activity. You might enjoy using these lessons and the corresponding activities on a family night so that everyone can join in.

See Sample Lessons


Watch authors Ray and Charlene Notgrass explain how the components of Uncle Sam and You work together as they walk you through a sample unit from the curriculum.

Uncle Sam and You Literature PackageWe assign eight books--biographies and historical novels--in Uncle Sam and You. Your child does not have to read the literature to understand the lessons, but each book gives your student a richer perspective on topics in the lessons. The student is usually given two weeks to read each book, with 1-3 chapters assigned each day.

Middle-school students can read the books on their own, or you can use them as family read alouds. The first three books go along with Part 1 and the other five with Part 2.

  • Lincoln: A Photobiography by Russell Freedman (Units 5-6)
  • A Letter to Mrs. Roosevelt by C. Coco De Young (Units 10-11)
  • Brighty of the Grand Canyon by Marguerite Henry (Units 12-14)
  • Basher Five-Two by Scott O'Grady (Units 16-17)
  • Misty of Chincoteague by Marguerite Henry (Units 18-19)
  • The Long Winter by Laura Ingalls Wilder (Units 22-24)
  • The Wright Brothers: How They Invented the Airplane by Russell Freedman (Units 25-26)
  • Lost on a Mountain in Maine by Donn Fendler (Units 29-30)


Read sample lessons and see sample pages from the consumable books with these PDF files.

Table of Contents / Introduction

Part 1

Part 2

The Citizen's Handbook

Student Workbook

Lesson Review

Answer Key


Favorite School Book

"Uncle Sam and You is by far my 13-year-old son's favorite school book!" (Jill R., Alabama)

Independence and Diligence

"My 11-year-old has thoroughly enjoyed the Uncle Sam lessons, and I have enjoyed her independence and diligence in completing assignments." (Linda R., Indiana)

Renewed Interest in Learning

"My son and I are both learning so much! This is written in such a way so that all the pieces make sense, and now it has given me a renewed interest in learning about our great country. As a parent, it has helped me in being able to teach him better. Love the color pictures too!" (Maria H., Tennessee)

Bringing It to Life

"I love that you give so many options to do with each lesson and unit and that we can pick and choose what we'd like to do. I love the way the lessons are written and organized, and I love the pictures that are in each lesson bringing it to life." (Brandy M., Georgia)

Holiday Activities

"The rich materials are fascinating and by all means allow us to study history and not feel like it's dry and boring. I look forward to starting the family activities and the holiday activities." (Jessica N., Washington)

Ray and Charlene NotgrassRay and Charlene Notgrass are followers of Jesus and veteran homeschooling parents. They met at Middle Tennessee State University in the political science department. After graduating they were married in 1974. Ray went on to earn master's degrees in history and New Testament. Ray and Charlene are lifelong history lovers and began writing homeschool curriculum in 1999. They enjoy classic literature, traveling together, and spending time with their children and grandchildren.

Mary Evelyn McCurdy and Bethany Poore were homeschooled by their parents, Ray and Charlene Notgrass. Mary Evelyn enjoys traveling, sewing, and exploring the outdoors with her husband and their children. Bethany enjoys being in the kitchen, delving into history and literature, and spending time with family and friends. She is blessed to be a wife and mommy.


Uncle Sam and You Purchase Options

Are you ready to experience all that Uncle Sam and You has to offer? Order today with confidence. If you are not satisfied for any reason, we offer a full money-back guarantee.

​Use the product links below to order online or call 1-800-211-8793. If you have any questions about choosing the right options for your child, please call, text, or email us.

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