History is presented in a uniquely understandable fashion because events are explained in the context of big ideas in history, and organized using the problem-solution-effect format. Historical events are understood as responses to either economic problems or human rights problems. Human responses are categorized as attempts to solve these problems through accommodating, dominating, moving, inventing or tolerating (ADMIT) the problem. Presenting historical information in a carefully organized fashion results in greater student comprehension and retention. Several times in each chapter the key content is captured by test questions requiring an essay answer. Students are provided with scaffolding (graphic organizers and model answers) to assist them in learning the key ideas of the text and how to articulate the answers to the essay questions. In addition the text has excellent and frequent exercises for vocabulary instruction, cumulative review, and extension activities for higher order thinking.
Understanding U.S. History Volume I—Through 1914 by Douglas Carnine, Donald Crawford, Mark Harness & Keith Hollenbeck
Understanding U.S. History Volume II—Reconstruction to World Leadership by Douglas Carnine, Don Steely & Jerry Silbert
Teacher’s Manuals—Volumes I & II
Araminta Coleman's paper on the texts, How Well Understanding U.S. History Addresses The California State History-Social Science Standards-Grade 8, is available pdf here.