M/J World Geography
Geography is the study of the earth: its surface, climate, continents, countries, peoples, industries, and products. In this study of world geography, we will look at the physical and climatic characteristics of continents and the development of the people in those regions.
M/J World Geography examines the effect of geography on the growth of human society, and also the effect of human society on the world itself. This course starts at our earliest beginnings, examining man's adaptations to his environment, to his efforts to master the elements and use them to in a strategic manner to grow and prosper in the 15th century. It also explores current societies and their dependence on the land. Students will study such topics as agricultural societies, ancient civilizations, empires, trade, and migration.
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?
Goals for this course include:
Examine the world in spatial terms (according to hemispheres, latitude and longitude, maps, and time zones).
Identify the geographic locations in which early humans lived.
Describe the importance of primary sources and recognizing bias.
Examine the immediate and long-term effects of agriculture on human history.
Identify the main characteristics of civilizations.
Describe the rise and fall of empires.
Compare and contrast traditional, command, and market economic systems.
Follow the development of Western civilization from its beginnings to the end of the Renaissance.
Compare the significant religious, cultural, and scientific events in Europe and Asia during the Renaissance.
Identify cultural and geographic differences between the South American countries studied.
Identify cultural and geographic differences between the African countries studied.
Additionally, students will gain practice in map-making, report-writing, and presentation, covering topics such as European, Asian, and South American geography, how the establishment of cultures and societies are often based on geography, the "lifespan" of an empire and what makes a civilization "classical," and the impact of the past on the present.