M/J World Cultures
Culture is all the knowledge and values that a society shares. This includes, but is not limited to, religion, art, and architecture. M/J World Cultures focuses on the Cultures of the World from the beginnings of mankind (with an emphasis on the Early River Valley Civilizations, Egypt, Greece, and the Roman Empires). It also covers The Middle Ages and the global developments of that time, continuing into the Renaissance and Industrial Revolution in Western Europe, and Eastern Europe's history up until the beginning of Communism.
Because it was geography that contributed to and shaped a society's history and culture, some of the lessons (mapping in particular) are an overlap of M/J World Geography, but this course emphasizes a linear learning with an ongoing project of a timeline that encompasses the various cultures of the world and how they developed in relation to – or isolated from – the others.
The topic of migration and trade and their role in establishing (and sharing) cultures is explored by mapping and report-writing, as is the influence of the Renaissance and the Industrial Revolution.
The lessons in this course will help students answer the following questions:
- How do the interactions between people, the environment, and ideas form cultures, civilizations, and societies?
- Is the history of civilization a story of progress?
- In what ways have human choices shaped history?
- What brings people to conflict and cooperation?
- How do events and trends influence individuals, nations, and the world?
- What factors influence how we record or interpret history?
Upon completion of this course, students should be able to do the following:
- Explain the world in spatial terms (according to hemispheres, latitude and longitude, maps, and time zones).
- Identify the characteristics of early human communities.
- Describe how cultures differ in each of the hemispheres studied.
- Examine the immediate and long-term effects of agriculture on human history.
- Describe the early river valley civilizations in Mesopotamia, Egypt, India, and China.
- Identify the main characteristics of civilizations.
- Describe the emergence of empires.
- Describe the rise and fall of empires.
- Summarize the history and growth of the major religions.
- Describe Western civilization from its beginnings to the end of the Renaissance.
- Describe the significant religious, cultural, and scientific events in Europe during the Renaissance.
- Identify the characteristics of the Industrial Revolution.
- Examine the history, culture, and politics of Eastern European countries.
- Identify cultural and geographic differences between the South American countries studied.
- Identify patterns of trade and migration across the major eras of human history.