6th Grade Social Studies consists of 9 Units:
Unit 1: Maps & Timelines
Unit Objectives: In this unit, students will be able to identify and describe the relative time spans, locations, and geographic features of the major ancient world civilizations of The Fertile Crescent, Egypt, India, China, Greece, and Rome
1. Why is it important to learn about civilizations that existed so long ago?\
2. Which geographical features were useful to ancient civilizations?
3. Why did early civilizations develop in specific locations?
4. What challenges did early civilizations face?
Unit 2: The Beginning of Human Society
Unit Objectives: In this unit, students will be able to describe how archaeologists use clues to learn about prehistoric people; differentiate between prehistory; explain how geography affects civilizations; describe how humans lived during the old stone age; identify the developments that led to the new stone age; summarize how the development of farming changed the way people lived; explain how early farming villages grew into cities; describe how some societies grew into civilizations; and summarize the role of trade in the development of civilizations.
1. What tools do archaeologists use to learn about the past?
2. How does geography affect people's history?
3. Why did people change from living as nomads to living in settled villages and cities?
4. How was life in the Old Stone Age different from life in the New Stone Age?
Unit 3: The Fertile Crescent
Unit Objectives: In this unit, students will be able to describe the geography of the Fertile Crescent; explain the role of geographic features in the growth of cities; explore how empires formed Mesopotamia; compare and contrast the Assyrian and Babylonian Cultures; describe the effects of trade and conquest on ancient cultures;identify key points of Hammurabi's code; connect current events in the Middle East with Mesopotamia
1. How did the geography of Mesopotamia make this a likely area for the rise of civilization?
2. Why was Hammurabi's Code a major step forward for humankind?
3. What would a society be like without laws?
4. How did the development of writing impact Mesopotamian society?
Unit 4: Mediterranean Civilizations
Unit Objectives: In this unit, students will be able to explain the Phoenicians' contributions to ancient societies; describe the history of the Israelites; identify historical leaders of the Israelites; summarize how the religious beliefs of the Israelites' shaped their history; explain the rules and laws that guided the Israelites; and describe how Jews living in different parts of the world preserved their heritage
1. How does an alphabet or writing system impact a civilization?
2. The Israelites faced many challenges. Explore how their story is similar to another group of people in history? How are they alike? How are they different?
3. How does the development of the first monotheistic religion of the Hebrews reflect itself in today's religions?
4. Do you believe the Ten Commandments are still applicable to you as an individual and to the society as a whole?
Unit 5: Ancient Egypt
Unit Objectives: In this unit, students will be able to describe the geography of ancient Egypt and Nubia; summarize how the Nile affected trade and the ways of life of ancient Egyptians and Nubians; summarize how Egyptian pharaohs unified their country; explain the power pharaohs held on political and religious leaders; describe the importance of religion and the afterlife to ancient Egyptians; determine the reasons Egyptians made mummies and constructed pyramids; explain how Egyptians used technology and organization to build pyramids; explain the everyday lives of Egyptians in classes; describe Egypt's achievements in writing, mathematics, astronomy, and medicine; describe hieroglyphics and how they were deciphered; describe the relationship between Nubia and Egypt
1. Why do you think the Ancient Egyptian civilization lasted so long?
2. Why was the Nile River such an important part of the development of the Egyptian civilization?
Unit 6: Ancient India
Unit Objectives: In this unit, students will be able to identify the major geographical features of India and how these features affected history; describe the ancient city of Mohenjo-Daro and its culture; analyze the caste system of the ancient Indians; describe the development and beliefs of Hinduism from Ancient times; identify Buddha and describe his life and teachings; summarize the main principles of Buddhism; and identify emperors Chandragupta and Asoka of the Maurya empire.
1. How do the ancient teachings of Hinduism and Buddhism and Buddhism impact today's society?
2. What are the pros and cons of living in a caste system with little chance to move up and down?
3. How does suffering bring about change in individual people and society at large?
Unit 7: Ancient China
In this Unit, students will be able to explain the importance of physical geography in the development of Chinese civilization; summarize how the structure of families may have influenced the development of Chinese society; specify the principles emphasized by Confucianism; explain the effect Shi Huangdi had on Chinese culture; summarize the reasons for the long reign of the Han dynasty; outline how the silk road benefited Chinese civilization; describe how the Han dynasty used Confucianism to strengthen its rule; and identify major achievements of the ancient Chinese in technology, medicine, and art.
Essential Questions (including, but not limited to the following):
1. From what you know about Confucius, do you think he would approve of the way people live today in the United States?
2. Throughout history, there have been many harsh rulers. Do you believe that the early rulers had to be harsh to establish order in their civilizations?
3. How is the family unit the foundation of a society?
Unit 8: Ancient Greece
Unit Objectives: In this Unit, students will be able to describe Greece's geographic setting; explain the significance of Greek myths; identify different forms of government that developed in Greek city-states; describe important Greek contributions to art, architecture, and drama; identify the significance of the Greek alphabet; outline the development of Greek religion and philosophy; describe the lives of the people in ancient Greece; compare and contrast life in Athens and Sparta; summarize the achievements of Alexander the Great; explain how Alexander's conquests spread Greek culture; and describe ancient Greece's achievements in architecture, mathematics, and science.
Essential Questions (including, but not limited to the following):
1. What evidence of Ancient Greek culture is evident in our society today?
2. How did leaders like Alexander the Great expand their empires into new territories?
3. Is it possible for a society today to have a "true" democracy?
Unit 9: Ancient Rome
In this Unit, students will be able to explain the importance of Rome's geographic setting; describe roman government during the Republic; describe achievements made during the reign of the five "good emperors;" interpret the influence of Greek culture on Rome; describe aspects of daily life of the ancient Romans; analyze the rise and expansion of Christianity in the roman empire; describe how Christianity spread to various areas of the Roman Empire; and summarize the problems that led to the decline of the Roman Empire.
Some Essential Questions:
1. What events lead to the rise of a civilization? What events lead to the fall of a civilization?
2. Who does a republic form of government serve most, the leaders or the people?
3. How do religion and government coexist? How do religion and government conflict?