1. Historical background
Provide historical background (and explanation) for such frequently-taught subjects as early modern Europe (what WAS the Holy Roman Empire?) and World War 1.
2. Theme-based topics
Give invaluable background to theme-based courses (lesson plan here), such as the history of medicine, crime and punishment, technology (lesson plan here), trade, migration, empires, revolutions and much more.
Provide background information studying connections between different regions and civilizations, to make those connections more meaningful for students. See Connections in East Asia Lesson Plan
4. Worldwide roots
Give topics a worldwide context. For example, here’s an example enquiry asking what were the non-European roots and global contexts which helped shape early modern Europe and sparked the rise of the West?
5. The Western Tradition
Help provide a broad survey of the “Western tradition” of world history (Ancient Middle East to Greece and Rome to Medieval Europe to the Rise of the West), and perhaps contrast this with an accessible and brief survey of another tradition – e.g. East Asia – to add contrast and comparison, without taking too much time from the main study. See this approach in our Historical Traditions Lesson Plan
6. A broad perspective
Provide a global perspective to the great phases of world history, e.g. the ancient world, the medieval world, the early modern world, the 20th century history.
7. Outside the mainstream
Take an accessible look at vast regions often outside the mainstreams of history, such as sub-Saharan Africa, Pre-Columbian America, south east Asia, the island universe of Oceania.
8. The byways of history
Allow exploration of the byways of history (i.e. most of history!). For example, what happened to the Ancient Egyptians after they were famous? or Greece? or Italy?
9. Track any country
Allow your students to track the history of any country in the world, from its origins through to the 21st century (this will be useful for those whose families come from regions which are not being
focussed on in your main study).
10. Wider context
Place episodes related to particular nations within a global context and so make more sense of them – e.g. the worldwide struggle between Britain and France for overseas empire was the context in which a) colonial America became an independent nation, b) Australia was discovered by Captain Cook, and c) the Industrial Revolution got going in the UK. None of these historical outcomes is really comprehensible if studied in isolation.
11. 20th century history
Provide accessible global background to most major historical events of the 20th century – the World Wars, the flappers, the Great Depression, the Cold War – even if these are being looked at within a national context.