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Big Era Six: Panorama Unit

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The Great Global Convergence
1400 - 1800 CE

Why This Unit?

This teaching unit will help students understand the processes of global convergence, that is, the linking of most of the world’s population that occurred in Big Era Six. When the era opened, Europeans had no direct access to the vital trading hubs centered in East and South Asia. Determined to gain access to the trade in spices and other tropical products, Europeans borrowed sailing technologies from Muslim, South Asian, and East Asian mariners and also invented many new maritime and navigational devices. Thus, Europeans acquired the technology and skills that enabled them to sail around Africa to the Indian Ocean and to “stumble” on the New World.

Unit Objectives

Upon completing this unit, students will be able to:

1. Analyze how and why exchanges of people, resources, trade, and ideas intensified and accelerated in the world as a whole between 1400 and 1800.

2. Describe political, economic, technological, scientific, and cultural exchanges that took place among major parts of the world between 1400 and 1800.

3. Analyze why there was a shift from an Asian-centered trading system to an Atlantic-centered system during this era.

4. Assess the effects of important cultural and scientific exchanges during this era.

5. Explain how advances in gunpowder technology enabled European states to assert greater political, military, and economic power in the world during this era.


Time and Materials

Teaching time will vary depending on how many of the lessons teachers decide to use.

Materials:

  • Butcher paper
  • Markers for large writing
  • Overhead projector
  • Power Point Overview Presentation for this teaching unit.

Table of Contents

Why this unit?

2

Unit objectives

2

Time and materials

3

Author

3

The historical context

3

Lesson 1: Luxury Trade Before the European Oceanic Voyages

5

Lesson 2: Trade Before the European Networks were Established. Case Study of Malacca

3

Lesson 3: Hunger for Spices

19

Lesson 4: Europeans in the Indian Ocean

26

Lesson 5: Columbian Exchange

31

Lesson 6: The Great Dying and Its Relationship to Slavery in the Americas

41

Lesson 7: The Military Revolution

53

Lesson 8: Scientific Revolution or Scientific Evolution? 60
This unit and the Standards in Historical Thinking 66

Resources

66

Correlations to National and State Standards

68

 

Complete Unit in PDF format


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