History and Geography are two of the most important social science disciplines for understanding the workings of our world. When we want to know something about an event or location, we usually ask; “What happened? Where is it?”

Our answers are generally applied to a real life situation or need to figure out how we are being affected by the event in a location thousands of miles from us. The Egyptian revolution being played out in the streets of Cairo between the military, Muslim Brotherhood, and the westernized and educated classes is a powerful example.

A strong and deep knowledge of history is necessary to better understand how events and change in the present are affecting us. We draw upon similar past trends or happenings to identify and explain parallel happenings in the present. Egypt has a very long and complex history as a cosmopolitan center of the Arab and Muslim world. Without knowledge of that past, it would be harder to sort out current circumstances for the purpose of predicting where Egypt’s Arab Spring is heading towards.

Geographical knowledge is similarly important for this discipline helps us tie together history, current events, and trends both positive and negative. One is helpless to comprehend the importance of an event if we are clueless to where it is happening. We cannot grasp the importance to us if we are historically and geographically ignorant.

Why is the Egyptian Revolution that began in 2011 important to an American? Egypt is the most militarily powerful and populous Arab nation. The country borders the Suez Canal, one of the most important shipping corridors in the world. It is the leader of the Arab world and maintains the Middle East changing peace treaty with Israel (1979). America grants Egypt $1.6 billion in military aid to help keep the peace in the region and economic ties with the rest of the world.

The country’s nearly 100 million people live almost exclusively along the Nile River Valley limiting the nation’s ability to expand food supplies for a fast growing population. Some of the American aid subsidizes wheat purchases and provides the cheap daily bread supplies that Egyptians expect and have rioted against past price increases. It is the same with cooking oil that is used in nearly every meal. American farmers sell a great deal of food to Egypt whose economy has been wrecked by the civil disturbances and drop off of tourism.

The author hopes that the History of a Day lesson will stimulate student interest to become more knowledgeable of history and geography, two key foundations in evolving in to a well informed American and citizen of the world.

GLOBAL PERSPECTIVES / QCC OBJECTIVE 2 – (BST-1, 2, 3, 4. 1O, l3, 14_QBE -54, 61: AF/AM).

2-4: Compare and contrast selected world regions according to their economies, governments, and propensity for change.

2-5: Predict major political and economic developments in the world by the year 2050.

GLOBAL PERSPECTIVES / QCC OBJECTIVE 3 - Examine the relationship of inter­dependence to independence in the world (BST-1, 2, 3, 4, 10, 13:_QBE-54;_ AF/AM

3-1: Distinguish between interdependence and independence and cite examples to support the distinctions

3-4: Make generalizations regarding the relationship of interdependence to independence in the world

3-5: Formulate a hypothesis concerning the natural consequences of the unequal distribution of the resources of the world.

PERFORMANCE OBJECTIVE #1 - The student will survey the history of the world to:

A- Recognize the effects of change upon humans and the world.

B- Identify historical trends and understand how they affect humans, nations, and the world.

C- Personally examine the influence of the past, the present, and cyclical trends to develop a sense of history and perspective.

PERFORMANCE OBJECT I VE #2 - The student will be able to:

A- Understand the influence of the past on the present.

B- Analyze and interpret the present to make reasonable predictions regarding the future.

C- Anticipate how human interaction will be affected by a variety of disasters.

PERFORMANCE OBJECTIVE #3: The student will be able to recognize how the exporting / dispersal of culture and technology hasten cultural uniformity.

The projection of American military power abroad is called “hard power”. The dispersal of U.S. democratic ideals, popular culture, way of life is called “soft power”. In your opinion, which form of power is more likely to positively shape a more peaceful and prosperous future? Why?

PERFORMANCE OBJECTIVE #4: The student will make predictions about the future from 2013 decade by decade through the year 2063:

A- By participating in a future forecasting simulation experience.

B- By developing a future timeline and submitting an individual or group report.

KEY CONCEPTS: History, events, trends, cycles, human relations, tribes, nation-states, industrialism, affluence, poverty, materialism, imperialism, revolution, air/space travel, media – print / TV, global relations, past, present, reality, perception, future, consequences.


Student Handout #7: THE HISTORY OF A DAY and corresponding Student Handout #8, FUTURE TIME LINE (group activity) are the two resources for teaching Unit 2. THE HISTORY OF A DAY lesson, a compression of all of human history into twenty-four hours, is an interactive learning experience for students to grasp the enormity and flow of history, and the affects of change upon people.

THE HISTORY OF A DAY lesson was originally conceived by the One World Trust of London, England, for its World Studies Project's curriculum, Learning For Chance in World Society. Dr. Audrey Gray, past Program Director of the Close Up Foundation, a Washington, D. C., based non-profit educational organization that brings approximately 30,000 U. S. secondary students to the nation's capitol to study how their government works from 'close up', adapted the lesson as part of the organization's core curriculum. Dr. Gray later added the FUTURE TIME LINE lesson which was designed to help students sharpen their future forecasting skills.


The purpose of the A HISTORY OF A DAY and FUTURE TIME LINE lessons are to help students to apply knowledge of the past and understanding of the present so as to be able to make reasonable predictions about the future. Students are expected to think seriously about the future, share their ideas about it, and build consensus in small groups about what the class thinks will happen in the future. Encourage students to come up with their own ideas and remind them that they can use their imagination--for after all, we are all 'experts' regarding the future.


1- Divide the class into small groups of five or six. Introduce, define, and dis­cuss all Unit 2 concepts until students apparently comprehend them.

2- Ask students to listen carefully, even close their eyes while the teacher reads each event and / or trend. This learning experience may help develop a student's sense of history, perspective, and sensitivity to cyclical occurrences.

While reading handout #7, please focus on the line: "They (European nations) went out and stole South America, North America, India, and Africa." Relate that line to the concept of IMPERIALISM. In an inquiring manner (how and why questions), teach students that the Europeans were the first to organize nation-states. This and other advances made Spaniards, Portuguese, Englishmen and Frenchmen feel superior to the people they were colonizing (ethnocentrism).

Historians have documented how and why Europeans convinced themselves that it was their mission to spread their religion and culture to presumably less developed peoples, by force of superior technology (guns, cannons,) if necessary. In modern times, TV, movies, rock n' roll music, and international airlines (soft power) may just as swiftly and powerfully hammer traditional societies with change, though through exposure to seductive new cultural influences rather than militarism, colonialism, or imperialism.


And then, on the stroke of midnight, the people had the world to themselves. For a long while, so far as we know, they were very quiet. All through the morning and all through the afternoon, they just wandered around in small caves, dressing themselves in skins. At about six o'clock in the evening they began to learn about seeds and manure and so on, and about how to herd and milk animals. By about half past seven, some of them were living in biggish cities and in the countries between.

Moses came and went at about a quarter to nine. Buddha in India, Socrates in Greece, Confucius in China, a11 came and went together, though they didn't know each other, at about ten past ten. Christ was at half past ten as also give or take a minute or so, were the Great Wall of China and Julius Caesar.

At around ha1f past e1even there began to be biggish cities in northern Europe. From about a quarter to twelve onwards, people went out from these cities, and they began stealing from the rest of the world. They stole America, both North and South; they stole India; and just after four minutes to midnight, they stole Africa too. At about two minutes to midnight, they had a big war amongst themselves, and then had another big war only fifty seconds later.

During the last minute before midnight these people from northern Europe were pushed back out of India and Africa, and also back out of many other countries, though not out of North America, where they had become very settled indeed.

Also, during this last minute these people invented nuclear weapons; they were responsible for almost doubling the world's population; they used up more oil and more metal than had been used in all previous twenty-three hours and fifty nine minutes put together. In the last second, they began to realize how their industrial and automobile exhausts were polluting the Earth and established a day to celebrate cleaning up the planet.

It was midnight again the start of a new day.

Student Handout #8


DIRECTIONS: You have 10 minutes to put some of your ideas on the Future Time Line. Try to imagine future INVENTIONS, EVENTS, TRENDS, LIFESTYLES, CONDITIONS, or DISCOVERIES. Try to imagine events which affect the entire world or the whole United States, not just you or your family. EXAMPLES: Energy resources, food supplies, climate change, space colonies established, joint global exploration of Mars and deep space; cures for AIDS, cancer, malaria and other diseases.