We're going to finish up with Egypt and move right into Ancient Greece! This is usually a great unit because we get to do so many activities while learning about this culture. Greek Mythology is usually a big hit because of all of the recent literature that is popular with the students. We won't dive too deep into mythology but we will focus on all of the cultural and technological advancements that we have today as a result of these early civilizations. Lastly, if everything goes right, we'll have the opportunity to conduct the "1st Greek Olympics" as a grade.
The question of Kansas becoming a slave state or free state is our main focus as we glide through November. Many polarizing figures such as Henry Clay, Stephen Douglas, and John Brown play an important role as Kansas is getting poised to become the 34th state in the Union. Little did people know at the time, but the bloody battles that occurred during this violent time period would serve as a spark that would help ignite the Civil War. To paraphrase William Allen White, if it was happening in the United States, it happened first in Kansas.
Mountain Men and the Gold Rush! These were the early pioneers and adventurers that originally opened up the western portion of the country to taming and settlement. We'll spend some time early this month learning about the difficulties these early settlers faced how they overcame them. This will lead directly into the idea of heading west and expanding our nation to the Pacific Ocean. The largest land migration in recorded history will follow and we'll study this trek through activities and projects. Students will really get into this topic and form an emotional attachment and response to some of the actual pioneers on the Oregon Trail.