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List of Benchmarks for World History

Standard 26.Understands how the transoceanic interlinking of all major regions of the world between 1450 and 1600 led to global transformations
  Level II (Grade 5-6)
   1. Understands the interregional trading system that linked peoples of Africa, Asia, and Europe on the eve of the European overseas voyages
   2. Understands what contributed to increasing oceanic travel in the 15th and 16th centuries (e.g., major Spanish and Portuguese technological innovations in shipbuilding, navigation, and naval warfare; navigational inventions such as the compass, astrolabe, and quadrant; trade routes of prominent Asian and European explorers and how prevailing wind currents influenced these routes; the features of Chinese and Arab sailing vessels that made long-distance travel easier)
   3. Understands the character and impact of Portuguese maritime expansion to Africa, India, and Southeast Asia upon local populations (e.g., relations between King Affonso II of the Kongo and Portuguese, why Bartholomew de las Casas was considered the "defender of the Indians")
   4. Understands features of Spanish exploration and conquest (e.g., why the Spanish wanted to invade the Incan and Aztec Empires, and why these empires collapsed after the conflict with the Spanish; interaction between the Spanish and indigenous populations such as the Inca and the Aztec; different perspectives on Cort‚s journey into Mexico)
   5. Understands the cultural and biological exchange between the Americas and Afro-Eurasia in the late 15th and 16th centuries (e.g., the exchange of animals between the Americas and Afro-Eurasia; how the exchange of plants between the Americas and other countries affected societies and commerce; the roots of "cowboy" culture in the Americas)
   6. Knows the major accomplishments of Columbus (e.g., his voyages off the coast of Africa and to North America)
  Level III (Grade 7-8)
   1. Understands the impact of the exploratory and commercial expeditions in the 15th and 16th centuries (e.g., the motives and short-term significance of the Portuguese and Spanish military and commercial expeditions to Sub-Saharan Africa, Asia, and the Americas; technologies that advanced international, seaborne trade in the latter part of the century; the connotations of the words "conquest," "exchange," and "discovery" used to describe Columbus' travels to North America and his encounters with indigenous populations)
   2. Understands how the Ottoman, Indian, Chinese, Japanese, Vietnamese, and Siamese powers restricted European commercial, military, and political penetration in the 16th century
   3. Understands cultural interaction between various societies in the late 15th and 16th centuries (e.g., how the Church helped administer Spanish and Portuguese colonies in the Americas; reasons for the fall of the Incan Empire to Pizarro; how the Portuguese dominated seaborne trade in the Indian Ocean basin in the 16th century; the relations between pilgrims and indigenous populations in North and South America, and the role different religious sects played in these relations; how the presence of Spanish conquerors affected the daily lives of Aztec, Maya, and Inca peoples)
   4. Understands the impact of the exchange of flora, fauna, and pathogens on the Americas and the global population (e.g., the spread of disease throughout the world, and how new disease microorganisms in the Americas devastated indigenous populations; population decline in parts of the Americas within the context of global population trends and growth in Europe and East Asia in the 16th and 17th centuries, origins and routes of flora and fauna exchanged across the globe)
   5. Understands the significance and cultural impact of migrations of the Muslims and Jews after their expulsion from Spain
   6. Knows which crops in Spanish and Portuguese regions of the Americas were domestic and which were commercial, and knows what resources commercial crops demanded
  Level IV (Grade 9-12)
   1. Understands features of Portuguese overseas trade and exploration (e.g., the goals of the Portuguese trading policy as established by King Jo o II, and his reasons for refusing to finance Columbus' expedition west; the impact of maritime technologies on the quality of Portuguese sailing in the 15th century)
   2. Understands significant social, economic, political, and cultural features of European society (particularly Spain and Portugal) that stimulated exploration and conquest overseas
   3. Understands the consequences of Portuguese military conflicts and interaction with other cultures (e.g., the origins and consequences of Ottoman-Portuguese military conflicts in the Red Sea, Arabian Sea, and Ethiopia in the early 16th century; the political and economic impact of Portuguese presence on the peoples of West and East Africa in the late 15th and 16th centuries)
   4. Understands the consequences of the spread of disease globally and regionally (e.g., which diseases spread through colonization and exploration in the 16th and 17th centuries, how they were spread, and the effects of these diseases on individual societies, world trade, political expansion, and political control; fundamental plantation systems brought to the New World and how these may be connected to the spread of disease on the continents)
   5. Understands the effects that knowledge of the peoples, geography, and natural environments of the Americas had on European religious and intellectual life (e.g., through such ideas as the romanticized "noble savage," systems of human classification, natural history, and cartography)
   6. Knows the extent of Chinese naval and commercial activities in the Indian Ocean in the 15th century, and understands what these activities reveal about Chinese wealth, technology, and its use of tributes as a means of trade
   7. Understands measures that restricted Muslims and Jews in the 15th and 16th centuries (e.g., the moral and religious justifications used by the Spanish for the expulsion of Jews and Muslims from Spain, and possible consequences of the Spanish conquest of Grenada in 1492; how the organization of overseas trades in the Iberian states prohibited Mudehar Muslims, converts, and Jews from settling in the Americas)
   8. Understands how various cultures responded to European presence in the 15th and 16th centuries (e.g., how practitioners of free trade along the northern rim of the Indian Ocean responded to European penetration; relations between the church and native populations; Asian responses to European naval encroachments)
   9. Knows the dynamics of the encomienda system of colonial government and labor, and how this compares to European manorial systems
   10. Knows the routes of exchange of specific flora and fauna (e.g., corn, cassava, sugar; horses, cattle, pigs) throughout the world between the 15th and 18th centuries, and the impact of these exchanges on the world economy