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List of Benchmarks for World History

Standard 13.Understands the causes and consequences of the development of Islamic civilization between the 7th and 10th centuries
  Level II (Grade 5-6)
   1. Understands the spread of Islam in Southwest Asia and the Mediterranean region (e.g., the life of Muhammad, his devotion to God, and the basic beliefs and values he preached; how Islam spread in Southwest Asia and the Mediterranean and evidence for its influence; the importance to Islam of the Hegira [Hirjah], the Ka'abah, the Qur'an, the Sunnah, the Hajj, the daily prayer [Salat], the poor due [Zakat] and Ramadan)
   2. Understands the influence of Islamic ideas and practices on other cultures and social behavior (e.g., the origin and development of Islamic law; the influence of Islamic law and Muslim practice on family life, morals, marriage, inheritance, and slavery; the possible appeal of Islam to culturally diverse non-Muslims across Afro-Eurasia in the Abbasid era)
   3. Understands how the Byzantine state withstood attacks between the 8th and 10th centuries (e.g., military technology and the successful defense of Byzantium against Arab Muslim attacks)
   4. Understands the effect of geography on different groups and their trade practices (e.g., nomads, town-dwellers, trade practices on the Arabian peninsula; the goods traded and the origins of these goods)
   5. Understands the significance of Baghdad (e.g., the trade network and goods traded, its role as a center of commerce in the 8th to 10th centuries CE)
   6. Understands the impact of the invention of paper on various cultures (e.g., Chinese, Muslim, later European culture and its route from its source through Muslim lands to Europe)
  Level III (Grade 7-8)
   1. Understands how the Muslims spread Islamic beliefs and established their empire (e.g., how Muslim forces overthrew the Byzantines in Syria and Egypt and the Sassanids in Persia and Iraq; Arab Muslim success in founding an empire stretching from Western Europe to India and China; the diverse religious, cultural, and geographic factors that influenced the ability of the Muslim government to rule; how Islam attracted new converts)
   2. Understands significant aspects of Islamic civilization (e.g., the emergence of Islamic civilization in Iberia and its economic and cultural achievements, how family life and gender relations were prescribed in Islamic society)
   3. Understands significant aspects of Abbasid culture (e.g., sources of Abbasid wealth and the economic and political importance of various forms of slavery; why the Abbasid state became a center of Afro-Eurasian commercial exchange; how the Abbasids promoted and preserved Greek learning and contributed to science, mathematics, and medicine; the contributions of specific individuals to the Abbasid advancement of scientific knowledge)
   4. Understands how the Byzantine Empire defended itself against various invaders (e.g., variations in maritime technology and ship design in the 9th century and the role of the navy in Byzantine defense against Arab Muslim attacks; weapons, fortification, and military preparedness of the Byzantine Empire and explanations for its successful defense against Bulgar and Arab invaders)
   5. Understands the Byzantine role in preserving and transmitting ancient Greek learning
  Level IV (Grade 9-12)
   1. Understands the political, social, and religious problems confronting the Byzantine and Sassanid Persian Empires in the 7th century and the commercial role of Arabia in the Southwest Asian economy
   2. Understands challenges to Muslim civilization (e.g., the transformation of the Arab Caliphate into a Southwest Asian and Mediterranean Empire under the Umyyad Dynasty, and why the Muslim community divided into Sunni and Shi'ite factions; the significance of the Battle of Tours of 733 as interpreted by Muslim and Christian sources and changing historiographical views of the event)
   3. Understands the strengths and weaknesses of the Abbasid, Byzantine, and Sassanid Persian governments and military institutions
   4. Understands the social structure of the Abbasid Empire (e.g., the treatment and legal status of non-Muslims and their cultural and social contributions to society; the lives of prominent women and factors that facilitated and mitigated their rise to prominence; the role and status of royal bureaucrats, landowning nobles, peasants, urban artisans, and slaves; what Islamic conversion and adherence meant for social status)
   5. Understands political and economic systems of the Byzantine state (e.g., Byzantium's imperial political system compared to that of the Abbasid state; understands patterns of economic, political, and military power in the manufacturing and trading centers of Constantinople and Baghdad )
   6. Understands how the spread of Greek Orthodox Christianity affected different regions (e.g., the patterns of the spread of Greek Orthodox Christianity into the Balkans, Ukraine, and Russia between the 9th and 11th centuries; explanations for the preference of Greek over Latin Christianity in the Slavic world; the story of Vladimir of Kiev in the Russian Chronicle, and the nature of the church/state relationship in Kievan Russia)
   7. Understands significant social and cultural changes in Islamic civilization between the 7th and 10th centuries (e.g., the changing position of women in the new Islam, how Muslim mosque architecture physically reflects the relationship between people, spiritual leaders, and God in Islam; the process through which Arabic became a common language in the early Islamic centuries; what branches of. scholarship developed out of the efforts of Muslim leaders and scholars to record the Qur'an and Hadith)
   8. Understands possible motivations behind the Byzantine preservation of ancient Greek and Hellenistic scholastic works