Period 1

Major Questions

  1. What are the basic characteristics of the three types of societies: hunter-gatherers (foragers), pastoralists, and civilization?
  2. What role did the environment play in the development of human society? How did the development of human society affect the environment and technological change?
  3. What are the basic features (culture, state, and social structure) of the following early civilizations: Mesopotamia, Egypt, Indus Valley, Shang China, Mesoamerica, Andean South America?
  4. What are the basic characteristics of the major classical empires (China, India, and the Mediterranean)? Focus on political developments, social and gender structures, major trading patterns, major trading patterns within and among societies, and cultural developments.
  5. Basic features and locations of the following major world belief systems: polytheisms, Hinduism, Judaism, Confucianism, Daoism, Buddhism, Christianity
  6. What were the causes for the decline of Han China, the western Roman Empire, and Gupta India?
  7. What was the impact of the movement of the following peoples: Huns and Germans?
  8. Explain the exchange of goods and ideas on the Silk Roads. How did the Silk Roads facilitate the spread of religions?

Major Comparisons and Analysis

  1. Compare major religions and philosophical systems including similarities in cementing a social hierarchy, e.g., Hinduism contrasted with Confucianism.
  2. Compare the role of women in the following belief systems: Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, and Christianity.
  3. Understand how the collapse of empire was more severe in western Europe than it was in the eastern Mediterranean or in China.
  4. Compare the caste system to other systems of social inequality devised by early and classical civilizations, including slavery.
  5. Compare the societies that include cities with pastoral and nomadic societies.
  6. Compare the development of traditions and institutions in major civilizations, e.g., Indian, Chinese, and Greek/Roman.
  7. Describe interregional trading systems, e.g., the Silk Roads.
  8. Compare the political and social structures of two early civilizations: Mesopotamia, Egypt, Indus Valley, Shang China, Mesoamerica, and Andean South America.
  9. Analyze the role of technologies in the growth of large state structures.