Western World History Class Forum

Class Description
Week 1
Week 2
Week 3
Week 4
Week 5
Week 6
Week 7
Week 8
Week 9
Week 10
Week 11
Week 12
Class Description

Western World History

In this survey of Western World History examine just how far back the geographic, ethnic, political, and religious tensions that have shaped the 20th century go! Group discussions and activities will provide new perspectives.




Week 1

Ancient Greece and Rome

Students discussed major events in Greek history along with the major areas of Greek culture that influence future civilizations including Greek government, art, philosophy, medicine, and science. As a group the class determined which elements of Greek culture the Romans adopted, and what was original to the Romans such as their engineering and social management strategies. Comparisons were also made between the two civilizations similarities in religion and social structure. Students then hypothesized as to why the Roman Empire was more successful and longer lasting than the Greek Empire. 


Activity

Students each chose a topic (Art, Government, or Medicine) to research and share with the class how the Romans impacted our modern interpretation of these topics. Each student was asked to find 2-3 sources (not Wikipedia) and then share with the class. Aside from the topic each student chose we also discussed their sources (why did they choose this source, what made it a reliable source, how can you tell the difference between a scholarly source and an entertainment source), analysis, and interpretations. 

Week 2

The Ruin of Rome

Students watched the documentary "Ruin" produced by History Channel. While watching the documentary students were asked to pay special attention to the internal and external forces that led to the decline and ruin of the Roman Empire. During and after the documentary the class discussed Alaric's Visigoths sack of Rome, 40 years of chaos and destruction brought about by the Huns and Attila's rise to power, and the various "barbarian hordes" that took back their homelands and made new homes in the once expansive Roman empire. Discussions wrapped up with  an examination of the Vandal king, Geiseric, and his mastermind of the final blow to the Roman empire.


Activity

As Rome was ruined, those people living within the old boarders of the Empire were no longer united under the "banner" of Rome. Some communities reverted back to their ethnic heritage such as the Saxons and Franks while others became occupied by new rulers such as in the lands controlled by the Ostrogoth King and the Vandals. The ruin of Rome meant that now Western Europe was divided into multitude of smaller kingdoms, tribes, and peoples each with a unique history, culture, and iconography. Using some of the examples provided crate a flag or banner and a shield for your new tribe that has taken root in what was once Roman territory. After creating your designs, share with the class why you chose a specific flag or banner design along with any special meaning behind the colors or symbols used.


Week 3

The Dark Ages

This week students are examining life in Europe after the ruin of Rome. The documentary Dark Ages by History Channel discussed the reasons why Europe experienced a long period of governmental unrest, cultural instability, and a lack of economic or technological advancement, after the ruin of Rome and before the Middle Ages. As students learned, the instability in Europe was in great part due to the fear and instability caused by the “Barbarian Hoards” and Vikings. To track the threats against stability in Europe students completed a timeline from 500AD to 900AD noting significant events or attacks from invaders along with moments of "light" and growth. Students also learned that a byproduct of the fear and instability of the Dark Ages was the feudal system. Because people were seeking protection within their small communities they turned to, or were forced into, service of a military leader. These military leaders often became lords control vast territory and collecting taxes or other tribute in exchange for their protection. Notable leaders of the Dark Ages were Clovis, known as the father of France, and Charlemagne the father of the Holy Roman Empire. 


Students also learned about the impact Vikings had on keeping Europe in the Dark Ages. Watching the History Channel Documentary Lost Cities: Vikings students first learned the difference between a Viking and someone of Norse decent. By clarifying this distinction students were also better able to identify the economic and social pressures on people living in Norway, Sweden, and Denmark that lead some people to "go Viking".  Students were also able to see how many of these same pressures had led to the ruin of Rome and the rise of Germanic tribes in Europe. As an exerciser, students mapped all the major Viking settlements and attacks in Europe from 770AD to 1100AD.

Week 4

The Battle for Souls and Influence 

This week students examine the Old Testament story of Abraham, Hagar, and Sarah. It is in this story that the three religions that dominate western civilization find a common ancestor. Through literary and history analysis students answer the following questions:

1. In what ways does this story exemplify the religious divisions that have plagued Europe for nearly 2,000 years? 

2. How does the geopolitical history of Europe and the Middle East during the Dark ages impact the spread of Islam and Christianity? 

3. Why did Pagan religions become replaced with Judo-Christian-Islamic religions? 

4. How does the ruin of Rome influence the spread of both Islam and Christianity?


Activity

Map the influence of Christianity and Islam in the Middle East, Mediterranean, and Europe by 1000AD.

Week 5

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Notes will be added within 48-hours after class. If not, please send an email to Admin@HomeroomEducation.com to request this Forum be updated. 

Week 6

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Notes will be added within 48-hours after class. If not, please send an email to Admin@HomeroomEducation.com to request this Forum be updated. 

Week 7

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Notes will be added within 48-hours after class. If not, please send an email to Admin@HomeroomEducation.com to request this Forum be updated. 

Week 8

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Notes will be added within 48-hours after class. If not, please send an email to Admin@HomeroomEducation.com to request this Forum be updated. 

Week 9

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Notes will be added within 48-hours after class. If not, please send an email to Admin@HomeroomEducation.com to request this Forum be updated. 

Week 10

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Notes will be added within 48-hours after class. If not, please send an email to Admin@HomeroomEducation.com to request this Forum be updated. 

Week 11

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Week 12

Check back soon!

Notes will be added within 48-hours after class. If not, please send an email to Admin@HomeroomEducation.com to request this Forum be updated.