World Cultures Part 1 will explore the geography, history, and cultures of the world. During the course of the semester, students will learn how the earliest civilizations developed in each region of the world and how these regions evolved up until the Age of Exploration and the Industrial Revolution. In each unit, students will study the major powers for each historical era. The course will begin with a discussion of the first river valley civilizations that developed in the Middle East, South Asia, East Asia, and North Africa and will focus on pre-history up to 200 B.C. The focus will then move to the Classical Era up to 700 A.D. and will be followed by the exploration of the major empires during the Middle Ages up to 1500 A.D. Students will complete Part 1 of this course by studying the interaction between the different hemispheres up to 1800 A.D.
Unit 1: Essential Content and Skills
- Trace the emergence of modern humans to explain their progression.
- Describe city-states and how other cultures learned about them to understand cultural diffusion.
- Summarize the effect of geography on the development of Egyptian culture to discuss the significance of the Nile.
- Describe Indus Valley cities and culture to assess their achievements.
- Identify and describe the key features of the Shang and Zhou civilizations to compare each civilization.
- Summarize the extent and impact of ancient world trade to explain how trade extended the development of civilizations beyond the Fertile Crescent.
Unit 2: Essential Content and Skills
- Explain the rise and development of Mycenaean civilization to discuss its impact on Greece.
- Analyze problems facing the Republic in order to summarize events leading to the creation of the Roman Empire.
- Describe the legacy of the Greco-Roman civilization to evaluate how they became part of Western civilization.
- Compare events in India’s three regions after the fall of the Mauryan Empire to evaluate their development.
- Analyze the fall and return of the Han to discuss the influence of the dynastic cycle.
- Explain the origins and impact of agriculture in the Americas to analyze its importance to their culture.
- Identify the different geographic regions of Africa to explain how early Africans adapted to their environments.
Unit 3: Essential Content and Skills
- Describe Arabia before the rise of Islam to explain how Muhammad began to unify the Arabian Peninsula under Islam.
- Describe Justinian’s achievements and life in Constantinople to evaluate his contributions to Byzantine culture.
- Summarize the Slavic, Greek, and Viking roots of Russia to discuss Russian culture.
- Summarize the achievements of the Tang and Song empires to describe the changes in Chinese society.
- Describe kingdoms of Southeast Asia to locate the Khmer Empire, the Koryu, and Japan.
- Describe Charlemagne’s empire to analyze Europe’s formation.
- Identify the kingdoms that developed in Africa during the same period as early medieval Europe.
Unit 4: Essential Content and Skills
- Describe various cultures of North and South America before the arrival of Columbus to identify the common features of Native American cultures.
- Identify the values and ideas that were prized during the Renaissance to discuss its culture.
- Analyze historical forces and religious issues that sparked the Reformation to discuss why it occurred.
- Describe the Ottoman Empire’s origins to trace the expansion of Ottoman power.
- Explain what caused European exploration in order to discuss Europe’s impact on China and Japan.
- Identify factors that led to the development of global trade to describe the effects of new economic policies on European society.
- World History: Patterns of Interaction (textbook)
*Available as an iText course