History Quest: Middle Times Study Guide

General History Quest Middle Times Information
Unit 1. Islamic Innovation

Here’s a TEDEd video about Islamic Art https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pg1NpMmPv48

Unit 2. Fall of the Byzantine Empire

Here’s a quick retelling of the rise and fall of the Byzantine Empire: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Okph9wt8I0A

This TEDEd video summarizes the life of Anna Komnene: https://ed.ted.com/lessons/the-princess-who-rewrote-history-leonora-neville

Unit 3. Western Europe

Here are a couple of guys having a fun time showing us how to build a house, wattle and daub style: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VIJlFBAAjvE

Unit 4. Tang and Song China

This TEDEd video teaches about the origins of gunpowder and also covers some of the science behind how it works: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mqHVRgCkCDE

Here’s a personality quiz that helps you figure out which famous Chinese emperor you are most like: http://pbs.lm-prod.media.ingest.s3.amazonaws.com/General%20Audience%202017/Story%20of%20China/soc-interactives-for-pbs-learning-media/which-emperor.html

Here’s an article with a photo tour of a modern-day fireworks factory in Liu Yang: https://www.cnn.com/travel/article/liuyang-china-fireworks-born/index.html

Watch the Mythbusters explain how the Mentos and diet soda reaction from this week’s project works: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LjbJELjLgZg

Unit 5. Norse

Here’s a TEDEd version of a Norse myth- “How Thor Got His Hammer”:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qytj-DbXMKQ

Learn about Viking runes with this TEDEd video: https://ed.ted.com/lessons/spells-threats-and-dragons-the-secret-messages-of-viking-runestones-jesse-byock

Watch modern-day workers build a Viking longship. It’s hard work! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eQ3u0jjWCkc

Here’s another resource from TEDEd on Viking ships: https://ed.ted.com/lessons/what-was-so-special-about-viking-ships-jan-bill

Unit 6. British Isles

This video shows what everyday life in Norman villages was like: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k6i4eetM_No

How the Normans Changed History TEDEd – Here’s a brief overview of the influence of the Normans: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Owf5Uq4oFps

Here’s a sample of Beowulf in Old English. Take a look and see if you can understand the words. The word “under” seems to appear a couple of times…that might be about all we can understand! https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=8&v=_K13GJkGvDw&feature=emb_title

Unit 7. Crusades

Here’s a quick tour of a medieval siege tower: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qXsYJD3BJlQ


Unit 8. Magna Carta

Ever wondered where the legend of King Arthur comes from? Check out this video: https://ed.ted.com/lessons/is-there-any-truth-to-the-king-arthur-legends-alan-lupack

Here’s some background information on Robin Hood, along with extra photos and illustrations: https://kids.kiddle.co/Robin_Hood

Here’s some more information on the Magna Carta, including a photo of a real manuscript of the document: https://kids.britannica.com/kids/article/Magna-Carta/353409



Unit 9. Ancestral Puebloans and Cahokia

Want to learn more about Cahokia’s Woodhenge? Check out this link: https://wgvu.pbslearningmedia.org/resource/solar-calendar-native-america/solar-calendar-native-america/

There’s a wealth of information at the website for Cahokia Mounds: https://cahokiamounds.org

Crow Canyon Archaeological Center’s website for kids. This site has great information about Puebloan culture, from thousands of years BCE up until modern times: https://www.crowcanyon.org/EducationProducts/pueblo_history_kids/introduction.asp

Mesa Verde Artifact Gallery- Check out some of the many Ancestral Puebloan artifacts found in Mesa Verde at this National Park Service website: https://www.nps.gov/meve/learn/education/artifact_gallery.htm

Unit 10. Mongols

Check out this “History vs. Ghengis Khan” video on TEDEd:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Eq-Wk3YqeH4

Here’s a nice overview of the Mongol Empire: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wUVvTqvjUaM

Check out another TEDEd- “A Day in the Life of a Mongolian Queen”: https://ed.ted.com/lessons/a-day-in-the-life-of-a-mongolian-queen-anne-f-broadbridge

Unit 11. Japan

Read more about samurai at this website: https://kids.kiddle.co/Samurai

Here’s a very brief overview of the history of samurai: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2opogq3QsNY


Unit 12. Khmer Empire

TED Talk about Khmer Classical Dance- In this video, artist Prumsodun Ok will teach you a lot more about the dancing featured in the History Hop, and you can even learn a few of the main hand gestures the temple dancers performed.  Please note that shortly after the 5-minute mark in the video, the focus shifts to how Cambodian traditional dance was almost wiped out by the Khmer Rouge: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oEIYHTlbeLA

Here’s a YouTube video showing dancers from the Royal Cambodian Ballet performing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Erbp1Isk96M

Unit 13. Great Zimbabwe and Ethiopia

Here’s a tour of how the rock churches of Lalibela look in modern times. You will see that many religious pilgrims still visit the site today: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HBq_zOzhTqw

Great Zimbabwe TEDEd- this brief video gives an overview of the ancient city, and it also explains some fo the controversy surrounding the origin of the city caused by colonizers with a racist agenda: https://ed.ted.com/lessons/who-built-great-zimbabwe-and-why-breeanna-elliott


Unit 14. Medieval Plague

Here’s a TEDEd video about the Black Death. Since it is illustrated in a TEDEd cartoon style, it is not particularly gory or graphic. However, we recommend watching it before your kids (It’s under 5 minutes long) as there are some details that could cause anxiety about the possibility of future outbreaks: https://ed.ted.com/lessons/the-past-present-and-future-of-the-bubonic-plague-sharon-n-dewitte

Here’s one version of the Prologue to The Canterbury Tales read aloud in Middle English. See if you can understand any of it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GihrWuysnrc

After you have listened to the sample of Middle English, go back and listen to a bit of Beowulf in Old English again. Which one was harder to understand? https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=8&v=_K13GJkGvDw&feature=emb_title

Animated version of “The Knight’s Tale” from The Canterbury Tales: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=deRyhTuny3w

Tells how builders used squirrel cages to help build cathedrals. Check out this link to see a real medieval squirrel cage in action: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OnfD3gIJ0as

Unit 15. Hundred Years' War

This website might be helpful in designing your own coat of arms. It lists all the meanings of the various colors and symbols: https://www.heraldryandcrests.com/pages/heraldic-symbolism-a-z

Here’s a quick overview of Joan of Arc that would be appropriate for younger or more sensitive students. It does not include the fact that she was killed: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wmPsBqovrVU

Here’s a little more information on the Hundred Years War, including a short quiz to test your knowledge: https://www.ducksters.com/history/middle_ages/hundred_years_war.php

Check out Laurence Olivier perform a monologue as King Henry V in the 1944 move version of Shakespeare’s play: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x26GN6rQbZI&list=PLzL29jMnv3Hf9ZL4HZf1gU3qrF4Mm1h5k&index=11

Unit 16. Polynesia

This TEDEd does a great job of explaining Polynesian way finding: https://ed.ted.com/lessons/how-did-polynesian-wayfinders-navigate-the-pacific-ocean-alan-tamayose-and-shantell-de-silva

Learn more about Hokulea’s modern-day journey around the world: http://www.hokulea.com/worldwide-voyage/

Learn about the history of surfing with this TEDEd video: https://ed.ted.com/lessons/the-complicated-history-of-surfing-scott-laderman

Unit 17. Mali Empire

Here’s a TEDEd overview of the life of Mansa Musa: https://ed.ted.com/lessons/mansa-musa-one-of-the-wealthiest-people-who-ever-lived-jessica-smith

Here’s a brief video about Timbuktu from UNESCO: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j4V-QAzKQ3A

Unit 18. Two Indian Empires

Here’s a YouTube video with the history of the game “Snakes and Ladders,” which originated in India: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PzLYKY1nPsY

Razia Sultan is the subject of a bio-pic from the 1980s and also a more recent TV series.  Here’s the big, famous song from the movie. The TV series is sometimes available on various streaming services and it does included English subtitles: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NQu0OgUUZEU

Unit 20. Explorers

Google Earth Voyager/PBS- Use this site to start your own “guided tour” using Google Earth. Scroll down to “Explorers: Early Connectors” and click “Connect With” to launch Google Earth’s interactive section on Marco Polo, Ibn Battuta, and Zheng He. Highly recommend! https://www.google.com/earth/education/explore-earth/

This TEDEd recounts Magellan’s efforts to circumnavigate the globe: https://ed.ted.com/lessons/how-magellan-circumnavigated-the-globe-ewandro-magalhaes

Here is PBS’s take on the same Magellan story. If you watch both videos in a row, you’ll have a great opportunity to discuss how two sources tell the same story in slightly different ways: https://wgvu.pbslearningmedia.org/resource/pbs-world-explorers-ferdinand-magellan/pbs-world-explorers-ferdinand-magellan/

Here is more information on Christopher Columbus from PBS: https://wgvu.pbslearningmedia.org/resource/58b6bd78-c924-4d32-b48d-d9590b862ff5/columbus-pbs-world-explorers/

This TEDEd puts Christopher Columbus on trial- was he a historical hero or a historical villain? Note: Parents should preview this video, as it mentions atrocities that may not be appropriate for younger viewers. Even if you don’t show this video to your child, you could watch it on your own time and use its content to have a discussion about Columbus: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GD3dgiDreGc&list=PLJicmE8fK0Ehj95_A5aaOvfzkKTrt3G3W&index=5

Here’s a brief PBS video summarizing the life and travels of Ibn Battuta: https://wgvu.pbslearningmedia.org/resource/b338a2c9-3067-4a0d-836d-b43711843956/ibn-battuta-pbs-world-explorers/

Here’s some information about the building of Zheng He’s ships: https://wgvu.pbslearningmedia.org/resource/vtl07.la.rv.text.zhengii/the-voyage-of-zheng-he-ii/

Here’s a brief overview of the life of Zheng He from the PBS World Explorers series: https://wgvu.pbslearningmedia.org/resource/e27de4d3-c939-4d55-ab55-2dc300db99ff/zheng-he/


Unit 21. Aztec Empire

This TEDEd video illustrates a famous Aztec myth: https://www.ted.com/talks/kay_almere_read_the_aztec_myth_of_the_unlikeliest_sun_god?language=en#t-237895

This video tells what life was like for kids in the Aztec Empire. Highly recommended: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wsNdYD8DODo

Here’s another good TEDEd video- “A Day in the Life of an Aztec Midwife”: https://ed.ted.com/lessons/a-day-in-the-life-of-an-aztec-midwife-kay-read

This chapter mentions the deadly disease smallpox. Here’s a TEDEd explaining how smallpox was eradicated: https://ed.ted.com/lessons/how-we-conquered-the-deadly-smallpox-virus-simona-zompi



Unit 22. Inca Empire

Here’s the link to the Guardian article about quinoa mentioned in the craft/project section of the History Quest: Middle Times Study Guide: https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2013/jan/25/quinoa-good-evil-complicated

Here’s a brief overview of the rise and fall of the Inca Empire from TEDEd: https://ed.ted.com/lessons/the-rise-and-fall-of-the-inca-empire-gordon-mcewan

Learn more about the quipu record-keeping system here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AmPyz1kCbOw



Unit 23. Renaissance

Here’s some background on Michelangelo’s David: https://ed.ted.com/lessons/the-many-meanings-of-michelangelo-s-statue-of-david-james-earle

This quick video is packed with helpful information about Brunelleschi’s dome in Florence: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_IOPlGPQPuM

Here’s a brief discussion of the meaning behind Machiavelli’s The Prince from TEDEd: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fUlGtrHCGzs

Here’s an overview of the history of the Mona Lisa: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ooz3u9y7P7I



Unit 24. Russia


Here’s a TEDEd with a great explanation of the history of Russia: https://ed.ted.com/lessons/where-did-russia-come-from-alex-gendler






Unit 25. Mughal Empire

Learn more about the Taj Mahal with this interactive website: https://www.pbs.org/thestoryofindia/gallery/photos/20.html

Here’s some additional information on the Peacock Throne, along with lovely illustrations: https://www.dailyartmagazine.com/the-peacock-throne-of-shah-jahan/

Here’s some more general information on the Mughal Empire, along with some additional photos: https://kids.kiddle.co/Mughal_Empire

Unit 26. Ottoman Empire

Ottoman Empire in the news: Check out this article on Suleiman’s tomb being found: https://www.seeker.com/tomb-of-suleiman-the-magnificent-possibly-found-1770594856.html

Here’s some additional reading on the Ottoman Empire: https://kids.kiddle.co/Ottoman_Empire#Sultan.27s_family

Unit 27. New Ideas for Europe

Here’s a great kid-friendly explanation of air resistance, i.e., why a feather and a hammer don’t hit the ground at the same time on Earth. (Related to Galileo’s experiment): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dxcx35x5L9Y

Here’s a brief overview of the life of Galileo Galilei: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3UyV6yg9hqM

Ever wondered why the Leaning Tower of Pisa leans? Has anyone ever tried to straighten it? Check out this TEDEd: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HFqf6aKdOC0

Unit 28. Elizabethan Times

What kind of leader was the infamous King Henry VIII? Check out “History vs. Henry VIII” in the “History vs.” series from TEDEd: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xdZcqAss92w&list=PLJicmE8fK0Ehj95_A5aaOvfzkKTrt3G3W&index=10

This is part of the scene from a Midsummer Night’s Dream that you watched at the Globe in your History Hop! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yGgsJd4_r4k

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