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List of Benchmarks for World History

Standard 9.Understand how major religious and large-scale empires arose in the Mediterranean Basin, China, and India from 500 BCE to 300 CE
  Level II (Grade 5-6)
   1. Understands the origins and social framework of Roman society (e.g., the geographic location of different ethnic groups on the Italian peninsula in the late 6th century BCE and their influences on early Roman society and culture, how legends of the founding of Rome describe ancient Rome and reflect the beliefs and values of its citizens, what life was like for the common people living in Rome and Pompeii)
   2. Understands shifts in the political and social framework of Roman society (e.g., political and social institutions of the Roman Republic and reasons for its transformation from Republic to Empire; how values changed from the early Republic to the last years of the Empire as reflected through the lives of such Romans as Cincinnatus, Scipio Africanus, Tiberius Gracchus, Cicero, Julius Caesar, Augustus, Nero, Marcus Aurelius, and Constantine)
   3. Understands the significance of Jesus of Nazareth (e.g., the story of the life of Jesus, the messages of Jesus' prominent parables)
   4. Understands events in the rise of Christianity (e.g., the life of Paul the Apostle and his contribution to the spread of Christian beliefs, how Christianity spread widely in the Roman Empire, how the New Testament illustrates early Christian beliefs)
   5. Understands the fundamental elements of Chinese society under the early imperial dynasties (e.g., policies and achievements of the Qin emperor Shi Huangdi, the life of Confucius and the fundamentals of Confucianism and Daoism, what life was like for ordinary people in ancient China as illustrated in Chinese folktales)
   6. Understands the commercial and cultural significance of the trans-Eurasian "silk roads" to the Roman and Chinese Empires and the peoples of Central Asia
   7. Understands the origins of Buddhism and fundamental Buddhist beliefs (e.g., the life story of Buddha and his essential teachings; how the Buddhist teachings were a response to the Brahmanic system; the contributions of the emperor Ashoka to the expansion of Buddhism in India; how Indian epic stories reflect social values, and how the Jakata tales reveal Buddhist teachings)
  Level III (Grade 7-8)
   1. Understands the significant individuals and achievements of Roman society (e.g., the major legal, artistic, architectural, technological, and literary achievements of the Roman Republic; the influence of Hellenistic cultural traditions; the accomplishments of different, famous Roman citizens [Cincinnatus, the Gracchi, Cicero, Constantine, Nero, Marcus Aurelius])
   2. Understands influences on the economic and political framework of Roman society (e.g., how Roman unity contributed to the growth of trade among lands of the Mediterranean basin; the importance of Roman commercial connections with Sub-Saharan Africa, India, and East Asia; the history of the Punic Wars and the consequences of the wars for Rome; the major phases of Roman expansion, including the Roman occupation of Britain)
   3. Understands fundamental social, political, and cultural characteristics of Chinese society under early imperial dynasties (e.g., the importance of the "Mandate of Heaven" to the success of the Zhou Dynasty and its development of imperial rule; the literary and artistic achievements of early imperial dynasties; the development and consequences of iron technology and the family division of labor system; comparisons between the Shang, Zhou, Quin, and Han Empires in areas they controlled and methods of government; the composition and stratification of Chinese society, and factors that gave individuals status; imperial attitudes and actions toward nomadic peoples along the borders of the kingdom)
   4. Understands the major religious beliefs and social framework in India during the Gangetic states and the Mauryan Empire (e.g., the major beliefs and practices of Brahmanism in India; how Buddhism spread in India, Ceylon, and Central Asia; aspects of social structure of India during the Mauryan Empire; what advice the animal stories of the Panchantantra offer to people with little power, how this advice was used by Chandragupta; how the teachings of Shvetaketu from the Chandogya Upanishad compare to the Buddhist idea of nirvana)
   5. Understands the status and role of women in Roman society
   6. Understands the influence of Christian beliefs on political, social, and cultural aspects of society (e.g., how Jesus' moral teachings utilized and expanded upon the prohibitions of the Ten Commandments in the Hebrew Torah, the locations of centers of the Christian church, the impact of Christianity upon the Roman Empire, the values and stories expressed in early Christian religious art)
  Level IV (Grade 9-12)
   1. Understands shifts in the political framework of Roman society (e.g., major phases in the empire's expansion through the 1st century CE; how imperial rule over a vast area transformed Roman society, economy, and culture; the causes and consequences of the transition from Republic to Empire under Augustus in Rome; how Rome governed its provinces from the late Republic to the Empire; how innovations in ancient military technology affected patterns of warfare and empire building)
   2. Understands the spread of Christianity and how it related to other belief systems (e.g., the extent and consequences of Christian expansion in Asia, Africa, and Europe to the 4th century; the events and circumstances, including the role of the martyr, that helped this expansion; comparisons between Jewish and Christian approaches to monotheism; the influence of other faiths upon the development of Christianity and those teachings that are distinctive to Christianity)
   3. Understands the political and cultural characteristics of the Han Dynasty (e.g., the political and ideological contributions of the Han to the development of the imperial bureaucratic state and imperial expansion, how contemporaneous art reflects the history and philosophy of China through the end of the Han Dynasty)
   4. Understands how Buddhism and Brahmanism influenced one another and Indian society (e.g., how Brahmanism responded to challenges posed by Buddhism and other reform movements; how Buddha's reforms contributed to the spread of Buddhism within and beyond India, how the Upanishad reflected Brahmanic teachings and how these compared with Buddhist teachings)
   5. Understands the growth of the Mauryan Empire in the context of rivalries among Indian states
   6. Understands the political, commercial, and cultural uses of Latin and Greek as universal languages of the Roman Empire
   7. Understands the political legacy of Roman society (e.g., influences of the Roman Constitution on the modern U.S. political system)
   8. Understands the role and status of women in the Confucian tradition
   9. Understands how art and literature reflect different aspects of Indian society (e.g., how literature such as the Ramayana can reflect the status and role of women in ancient cultures, how Indian art reflects a Persian or Greek influence)