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Unit 1: Europe During Medieval Times
1. The Legacy of the Roman Empire
Students participate in a Response Group activity to learn the reasons for the fall of the Roman Empire and how ancient Roman culture continues to affect modern life today.
2. The Development of Feudalism in Western Europe
In an Experiential Exercise, students learn about the development of feudalism in western Europe by re-creating the vassal-lord relationships that defined European feudal society.
3. The Role of the Church in Medieval Europe
In a Writing for Understanding activity, students learn about the Roman Catholic Church’s influence on life in medieval Europe.
4. Life in Medieval Towns
In a Problem Solving Groupwork activity, students learn about life in medieval Europe. They read and create dramatizations about six aspects of life in medieval European towns, such as guilds and medical treatment.
5. The Decline of Feudalism
In an Experiential Exercise, students explore how key events from the 12th through the 15th centuries contributed to the decline of feudalism in western Europe.
6. The Byzantine Empire
Students participate in a Visual Discovery activity to learn about the rise of the Byzantine Empire and how it developed a separate religious tradition from western Europe.
Unit 2: The Rise of Islam
7. The Geography of the Arabian Peninsula
In a Response Group activity, students examine four environments—the desert, oases, the coastal plain, and mountains—to discover how they affected ways of life on the Arabian Peninsula.
8. The Prophet Muhammad
In this lesson, students learn about the life of Muhammad and the rise and expansion of Muslim rule. In a Writing for Understanding activity, students create an illustrated manuscript that retells the story of Muhammad’s life in their own words.
9. The Teachings of Islam
In a Problem Solving Groupwork activity, students learn about the beliefs and practices of Islam.
10. Contributions of Muslims to World Civilizations
In a Social Studies Skill Builder, students read and learn about the contributions of Muslims to world civilization in such areas as science, geography, mathematics, philosophy, medicine, art, and literature.
11. From the Crusades to the Rise of New Muslim Empires
In a Problem Solving Groupwork activity, students learn about the causes and effects of the crusades through role playing and class discussions.
Unit 3: The Culture and Kingdoms of West Africa
12. Early Societies in West Africa
In an Experiential Exercise, students experience and explore four different types of societies—extended-family communities, villages, cities, and kingdoms.
13. Ghana: A West African Trading Empire
In this Experiential Exercise, students participate in a trading game to explore the salt trade and why it resulted in the growth of the kingdoms of Ghana and Mali.
14. The Influence of Islam on West Africa
In a Social Studies Skill Builder, students learn about the influences of Islam on West Africa.
15. The Cultural Legacy of West Africa
In a Writing for Understanding activity, students learn about West Africa’s oral, written, musical, and artistic culture and its impact today.
Unit 4: Imperial China
16. The Political Development of Imperial China
In an Experiential Exercise, students learn about the difficulties of ruling China and the systems of government used by successive dynasties from 220 to 1644 C.E.
17. China Develops a New Economy
In a Visual Discovery activity, students learn about the growth of China’s economy from the 10th to the 13th centuries.
18. Chinese Inventions and Discoveries
In a Social Studies Skill Builder, students learn about Chinese discoveries and achievements made from about 200 to 1400 C.E. and their effects on China and the West.
19. China’s Contacts with the Outside World
Students participate in a Response Group activity to learn about China’s contact with the outside world during the rule of three dynasties: the Tang, the Yuan, and the Ming.
Unit 5: Japan During Medieval Times
20. The Influence of Neighboring Cultures on Japan
In a Social Studies Skill Builder, students study the influence of India, China, and Korea on the development of Japanese culture.
21. Heian-kyo: The Heart of Japan’s Golden Age
In a Writing for Understanding activity, students learn about court life and the cultural accomplishments of Japan during the Heian period, which lasted from 794 to 1185 C.E.
22. The Rise of the Warrior Class in Japan
In an Experiential Exercise, students learn about the rise of a warrior class in Japan and the pivotal role the samurai played from the end of the 12th to the 19th centuries.
Unit 6: Civilizations of the Americas
23. The Maya
In an Experiential Exercise, students “visit” four ancient sites to learn about important aspects of Mayan life and culture.
24. The Aztecs
In a Visual Discovery activity, students learn about the rise of the Aztecs and the key stages in the development of the Aztec Empire.
25. Daily Life in Tenochtitlan
Students complete a Writing for Understanding activity to explore daily life in the Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan.
26. The Incas
In an Experiential Exercise, students learn about the Inca civilization and role-play to communicate information about aspects of Inca culture.
27. Achievements of the Maya, Aztecs, and Incas
In a Social Studies Skill Builder, students learn about important achievements of the Maya, Aztecs, and Incas.
Unit 7: Europe’s Renaissance and Reformation
28. The Renaissance Begins
In a Visual Discovery activity, students trace the changes in European life that led to the birth of the Renaissance.
29. Florence: The Cradle of the Renaissance
In a Writing for Understanding activity, students explore life in Renaissance Florence by taking a “walking tour” of the city.
30. Leading Figures of the Renaissance
Students participate in a Response Group activity to learn about ten prominent Renaissance figures and their achievements.
31. The Reformation Begins
In a Visual Discovery activity, students explore the causes and spread of the Protestant Reformation in Europe.
32. The Spread and Impact of the Reformation
In a Problem Solving Groupwork activity, students learn about three groups that broke from the Catholic Church during the Reformation and how the church tried to stop the spread of Protestantism.
Unit 8: Europe Enters the Modern Age
33. The Age of Exploration
In an Experiential Exercise, students work in teams to “explore” uncharted territory, just as European explorers did during this period. Along the way students discover some of the challenges, dangers, and rewards encountered by Europeans.
34. The Scientific Revolution
In a Visual Discovery activity, students analyze a series of images that represent the key discoveries, scientists, and inventions of the Scientific Revolution.
35. The Age of Enlightenment
In a Response Group activity, students visit a Enlightenment-era salon, or gathering, where they meet five important thinkers of the Enlightenment and learn about their ideas.