Alabama Learning Standards for Social Studies — Grade 8

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Describe military and governmental events that shaped Europe in the early Middle Ages (600-1000 A.D.). Examples: invasions, military leaders


Describing the role of the early medieval church


Describing the impact of new agricultural methods on manorialism and feudalism


Trace the development of the early Russian state and the expansion of its trade systems. Examples: rise of Kiev and Muscovy, conversion to Orthodox Christianity, movement of peoples of Central Asia, Mongol conquest, rise of czars


Describe Chinas influence on culture, politics, and economics in Japan, Korea, and Southeast Asia. Examples: culturedescribing the influence on art, architecture, language, and religion politicsdescribing changes in civil service economicsintroducing patterns of trade


Compare the African civilizations of Ghana, Mali, and Songhai to include geography, religions, slave trade, economic systems, empires, and cultures.


Tracing the spread of language, religion, and customs from one African civilization to another


Illustrating the impact of trade among Ghana, Mali, and Songhai Examples: using map symbols, interpreting distribution maps, creating a timeline


Describe key aspects of pre-Columbian cultures in the Americas including the Olmecs, Mayas, Aztecs, Incas, and North American tribes. Examples: pyramids, wars among pre-Columbian people, religious rituals, irrigation, Iroquois Confederacy


Locating on a map sites of pre-Columbian cultures Examples: Maya, Inca, Inuit, Creek, Cherokee


Describe major cultural changes in Western Europe in the High Middle Ages (1000-1300 A.D.). Examples: the Church, scholasticism, the Crusades


Describing changing roles of church and governmental leadership


Comparing political developments in France, England, and the Holy Roman Empire, including the signing of the Magna Carta


Describing the growth of trade and towns resulting in the rise of the middle class


Analyze characteristics of early civilizations in respect to technology, division of labor, government, calendar, and writings.


Comparing significant features of civilizations that developed in the Tigris-Euphrates, Nile, Indus, and Huang He River Valleys Examples: natural environment, urban development, social hierarchy, written language, ethical and religious belief systems, government and military institutions, economic systems


Identifying on a map locations of cultural hearths of early civilizations Examples: Mesopotamia, Nile River Valley


Describe the role of Alexander the Great in the Hellenistic world. Examples: serving as political and military leader, encouraging cultural interaction, allowing religious diversity


Defining boundaries of Alexander the Greats empire and its economic impact


Identifying reasons for the separation of Alexander the Greats empire into successor kingdoms


Evaluating major contributions of Hellenistic art, philosophy, science, and political thought


Trace the expansion of the Roman Republic and its transformation into an empire, including key geographic, political, and economic elements. Examples: expansionillustrating the spread of Roman influence with charts, graphs, timelines, or maps transformationnoting reforms of Augustus, listing effects of Pax Romana


Interpreting spatial distributions and patterns of the Roman Republic using geographic tools and technologies


Describe the widespread impact of the Roman Empire. Example: spread of Roman law and political theory, citizenship and slavery, architecture and engineering, religions, sculptures and paintings, literature, and the Latin language


Tracing important aspects of the diffusion of Christianity, including its relationship to Judaism, missionary impulse, organizational development, transition from persecution to acceptance in the Roman Empire, and church doctrine


Explaining the role of economics, societal changes, Christianity, political and military problems, external factors, and the size and diversity of the Roman Empire in its decline and fall


Explain how events and conditions fostered political and economic changes in the late Middle Ages and led to the origins of the Renaissance. Examples: the Crusades, Hundred Years War, Black Death, rise of the middle class, commercial prosperity


Identifying changes in the arts, architecture, literature, and science in the late Middle Ages (1300-1400 A.D.)


Explain how artifacts and other archaeological findings provide evidence of the nature and movement of prehistoric groups of people. Examples: cave paintings, Ice Man, Lucy, fossils, pottery


Identifying the founding of Rome as the basis of the calendar established by Julius Caesar and used in early Western civilization for over a thousand years


Identifying the birth of Christ as the basis of the Gregorian calendar used in the United States since its beginning and in most countries of the world today, signified by B.C. and A.D


Using vocabulary terms other than B.C. and A.D. to describe time Examples: B.C.E., C.E.


Identifying terms used to describe characteristics of early societies and family structures Examples: monogamous, polygamous, nomadic


Describe the development of a classical civilization in India and China. Examples: Indiareligions, arts and literature, philosophies, empires, caste system Chinareligions, politics, centrality of the family, Zhou and Han Dynasties, inventions, economic impact of the Silk Road and European trade, dynastic transitions


Identifying the effect of monsoons on India


Identifying landforms and climate regions of China Example: marking landforms and climate regions of China on a map


Describe early Islamic civilizations, including the development of religious, social, and political systems.


Tracing the spread of Islamic ideas through invasion and conquest throughout the Middle East, northern Africa, and western Europe


Compare the development of early world religions and philosophies and their key tenets. Examples: Judaism, Hinduism, Confucianism, Taoism, Christianity, Buddhism, Islam, Greek and Roman gods


Identifying cultural contributions of early world religions and philosophies Examples: Judaism, Hinduism, Confucianism, Taoism, Christianity, Buddhism, Islam, Greek and Roman gods, Phoenicians


Identify cultural contributions of Classical Greece, including politics, intellectual life, arts, literature, architecture, and science.


Describe the rise of the Byzantine Empire, its institutions, and its legacy, including the influence of the Emperors Constantine and Justinian and the effect of the Byzantine Empire on art, religion, architecture, and law.


Identifying factors leading to the establishment of the Eastern Orthodox Church