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Mali - National Education Standards


World History
Understands technological and cultural innovation and change from 1000 to 600 BCE

- Elementary (Grades 5-6)
Understands characteristics of pastoral nomadic societies
High School (Grades 9-12)
Understands the emergence of states south of the Sahara desert and the influence of metal technology in Sub-Saharan and West Africa


- Elementary (Grades 5-6)

Understands features of trade routes in Asia, Europe, and Africa
Understands elements of trade in different regions

- High School (Grades 9-12)

Understands how different religious movements influenced various cultures between the 11th and 13th centuries
Understands how interregional trade and communication affected Eurasia and Africa

Understands the development of agricultural societies and new states in tropical Africa and Oceania

- Middle School/Jr. High (Grades 7-8)

Understands influences on state-building in West Africa (e.g., how the natural environments of West Africa defined agricultural production, and the importance of the Niger River in promoting agriculture, commerce, and state-building; the growth of the Ghana empire; how Islam, labor specialization, regional commerce and the trans-Saharan camel trade promoted urbanization in West Africa; the governing system of the royal court in Ghana, and how the effectiveness of imperial efforts was aided by a belief in the king's divinity)

Understands the role of oral history in understanding West African history (e.g., the griot "keeper of tales" and other sources used to understand history)

- High School (Grades 9-12)

Understands economic, social, and religious influences on Ghana society (e.g., what archaeological evidence indicates about the development of Jenn-jeno and Kumbi-Saleh into important early commercial cities; the agriculture, trade, standard of living, expansionary tendencies and role of religious ideas in Ghana)

Understands major global trends from 300 to 1000 CE

- Elementary (Grades 5-6)

Understands major changes in the religious map of Eurasia and Africa between 300 and 1000 CE (e.g., the success of Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, and Islam in making converts among peoples of differing ethnic and cultural traditions)

Knows the maritime and overland trade routes linking regions of Afro-Eurasia and understands the importance of international trade for African and Eurasian societies

- Middle School/Jr. High (Grades 7-8)

Understands the factors that contributed to the weakening of empires in world history from 300 to 1000 CE (e.g., the migratory and military movements of pastoral nomadic peoples fom Central Asia and the Arabian Peninsula and the consequences of these movements for empires and agrarian civilizations of Eurasia and Africa)

Understands the growth of economic and cultural exchanges among different regions from 300 to 1000 CE (e.g., the importance of Muslim civilization in mediating long-distance commercial, cultural, intellectual, and food crop exchange across Eurasia and parts of Africa; migrations of farming peoples to new regions of Europe, Sub-Saharan Africa, China, Oceania, and Mesoamerica; connections between new settlements and the development of towns, trade, and greater cultural complexity in these regions)

Understands the growth of states, towns, and trade in Sub-Saharan Africa between the 11th and 15th centuries

- Elementary (Grades 5-6)

Understands influences on the economic development of Sub-Saharan empires (e.g., the importance of agriculture, gold production, and the trans Saharan caravan trade to the growth of the Mali and Songhay Empires; the importance of trade within the major city-states and populations of Sub-Saharan Africa)

Understands social and religious features of West Africa (e.g., what art reveals about the societies and rulers of Benin and Ile-Ife, the story of Solomon and Sheba and the role of Sheba in African history)

- Middle School/Jr. High (Grades 7-8)

Understands the development of the empires of Mali and Songhay (e.g., the importance of Islamic expansion in the political and cultural life of Mali and Songhay; the economic, social, and religious characteristics of the two empires; the observations of Ibn Battua and Leo Africanus in Mali and Songhay; the importance of the Monarch Mansa Musa in Mali)

Understands how architecture (e.g., the churches of Lalaibela and of Kalash in Ellora, India) reveals the influence of foreign states and the end of African isolation

- High School (Grades 9-12)

Understands how art and architecture reveal elements of Ile-Ife, Benin, and other African societies (e.g., the role of the ruler, political power, gender differences, foreign contact, technology)

Understands the political, social, economic, and religious development of the West African Sudan and the East African coast between the 8th and 13th centuries (e.g., how these areas were affected by outside influences, the role of commerce in their development)

Understands the influence of religion on African culture (e.g., Islamic and Christian expansion in Africa and why Islam was successful there; the differences between Coptic and Latin Christianity and how Coptics adapted African traditions to Christianity; the Zagwe Dynasty's achievements through patronage of Christian art and architecture, and characteristics of Ethiopian art and rock churches)

Understands the role of language in shaping African society

US History
Understands the characteristics of societies in the Americas, Western Europe, and Western Africa that increasingly interacted after 1450

- Elementary (Grades 5-6)

Knows the geographic characteristics of Western and Central Africa and understands the impact of geography on settlement patterns, cultural traits, and trade (e.g., in political kingdoms such as Mali, Songhai, and Benin; in urban centers such as Timbuktu and Jenne)

Compares political, social, economic, and religious systems of Africans, Europeans, and Native Americans who converged in the western hemisphere after 1492 (e.g., concepts of political authority, civic values, and the organization and practice of government; population levels, urbanization, family structure, and modes of communication; systems of labor, trade, concepts of property, and exploitation of natural resources; dominant ideas and values including religious beliefs and practices, gender roles, and attitudes toward nature)

- Middle School/Jr. High (Grades 7-8)

Understands the influence of Islam in Western Africa in the 15th and 16th centuries (e.g. interactions between Islam and local religious beliefs)


US History
Understands the characteristics of societies in the Americas, Western Europe, and Western Africa that increasingly interacted after 1450

- High School (Grades 9-12)

Understands the social, economic, and political factors that stimulated overseas exploration (e.g., the rise of centralized states, the development of urban centers, the expansion of commerce, the spirit of individualism and how it affected cross-cultural contacts with new peoples)

Understands the characteristics of Western African societies, such as Mali, Songhai, and Benin, in the 15th and 16th centuries (e.g., the economic importance of the trans-Saharan slave trade; the response of African states to early European coastal trading and raiding; general features of family organization, labor division, agriculture, manufacturing, trade)


Understands the physical and human characteristics of place

- Upper Elementary (Grades 3-5)

Knows how the characteristics of places are shaped by physical and human processes (e.g., effects of agriculture on changing land use and vegetation; effects of settlement on the building of roads; relationship of population distribution to landforms, climate, vegetation, or resources)

- Middle School/Jr. High (Grades 6-8)

Knows the causes and effects of changes in a place over time (e.g., physical changes such as forest cover, water distribution, temperature fluctuations; human changes such as urban growth, the clearing of forests, development of transportation systems)

- High School (Grades 9-12)

Knows how social, cultural, and economic processes shape the features of places (e.g., resource use, belief systems, modes of transportation and communication; major technological changes such as the agricultural and industrial revolutions; population growth and urbanization) Understands why places have specific physical and human characteristics in different parts of the world (e.g., the effects of climatic and tectonic processes, settlement and migration patterns, site and situation components)

Understands how physical systems affect human systems

- Upper Elementary (Grades 3-5)

Knows how humans adapt to variations in the physical environment (e.g., choices of clothing, housing styles, agricultural practices, recreational activities, food, daily and seasonal patterns of life)

Knows how communities benefit from the physical environment (e.g., people make their living by farming on fertile land, fishing in local water, working in mines; the community is a port located on a natural harbor, a tourist center located in a scenic or historic area, an industrial center with good access to natural resources)

Knows the ways in which human activities are constrained by the physical environment (e.g., effects of weather, climate and landforms on agriculture, recreational activities, availability of water, expansion of settlement)

Knows natural hazards that occur in the physical environment (e.g., floods, wind storms, tornadoes, earthquakes)

- Middle School/Jr. High (Grades 6-8)

Knows the ways in which human systems develop in response to conditions in the physical environment (e.g., patterns of land use, economic livelihoods, architectural styles of buildings, building materials, flows of traffic, recreation activities)

Knows how the physical environment affects life in different regions (e.g., how people in Siberia, Alaska, and other high-latitude places deal with the characteristics of tundra environments; limitations to coastline settlements as a result of tidal, storm, and erosional processes)

Understands relationships between population density and environmental quality (e.g., resource distribution, rainfall, temperature, soil fertility, landform relief, carrying capacity)

Knows the effects of natural hazards on human systems in different regions of the United States and the world (e.g., the effect of drought on populations in Ethiopia compared with populations in Australia or the southern part of the United States)

- High School (Grades 9-12)

Knows changes in the physical environment that have reduced the capacity of the environment to support human activity (e.g., the drought-plagued Sahel, the depleted rain forests of central Africa, the Great Plains Dust Bowl, the impact of the economic exploitation of Siberia's resources on a fragile sub-Arctic environment) Knows how humans overcome "limits to growth" imposed by physical systems (e.g., technology, human adaptation)

Knows conditions and locations that place limits on plant growth and therefore on the expansion of human settlement (e.g., soils with limited nutrients, high salt content, shallow depth; extremely cold, arid or humid tropical climates; mountainous and coastal environments)

Standard: 16

- Primary (Grades K-2)

Knows the role that resources play in our daily lives (resources used to generate electricity; resources used to produce automobiles, medicines, clothing, and food)

- Upper Elementary (Grades 3-5)

Knows the characteristics, location, and use of renewable resources (e.g., timber), flow resources (e.g., running water or wind), and nonrenewable resources (e.g., fossil fuels, minerals)

Knows how settlement patterns are influenced by the discovery and use of resources

Knows the relationships between economic activities and resources

Knows advantages and disadvantages of recycling and reusing different types of materials

Knows the different ways in which resources are used and valued in different regions of the world (e.g., the use of wood in the United States for construction compared to the use of wood in the Dominican Republic for fuel)

- Middle School/Jr. High (Grades 6-8)

Understands the reasons for conflicting viewpoints regarding how resources should be used

Knows strategies for wise management and use of renewable, flow, and nonrenewable resources

Understands the consequences of the use of resources in the contemporary world (e.g., the relationship between a country's standard of living and its accessibility to resources, the competition for resources demonstrated by events such as the Japanese occupation of Manchuria in the 1930s or the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in 1991)

- High School (Grades 9-12)

Understands the relationships between resources and exploration, colonization, and settlement of different regions of the world


Understands the search for community, stability, and peace in an interdependent world

- Elementary (Grades 5-6)

Understands global influences on the environment (e.g., how population growth, urbanization, industrialization, warfare, and the global market economy have contributed to environmental alterations; how effective governments and citizens' groups have been at protecting the global natural environment)

Understands efforts to improve political and social conditions around the world

Understands cultural trends of the second half of the 20th century (e.g., the influence of television, the Internet, and other forms of electronic communication on the creation and diffusion of cultural and political information worldwide; how the world's religions have responded to challenges and uncertainties in society and the world)

Middle School/Jr. High (Grades 7-8)

Understands the causes and effects of population growth and urbanization (e.g., why population growth rate is accelerating around the world, and connections between population growth and economic and social development in many countries)

Understands influences on economic development around the world (e.g., why economic disparities between industrialized and developing nations have persisted or increased, how neo-colonialism and authoritarian political leadership have affected development in African and Asian countries, the continuing growth of mass consumption of commodities and resources since World War II)

Understands the importance or meaning of the natural environment for societies around the world

Understands the motivations, moral imperatives, and goals of specific separatist movements around the globe and the potential impact on the affected populations

- High School (Grades 9-12)

Understands rates of economic development and the emergence of different economic systems around the globe (e.g., systems of economic management in communist and capitalist countries, as well as the global impact of multinational corporations; the impact of black markets, speculation, and trade in illegal products on national and global markets; patterns of inward, outward, and internal migration in the Middle East and North Africa, types of jobs involved, and the impact of the patterns upon national economies; the rapid economic development of East Asian countries in the late 20th century, and the relatively slow development of Sub-Saharan African countries)

Understands major reasons for the great disparities between industrialized and developing nations (e.g., disparities in resources, production, capital investment, labor, or trade; possible programs and measures to help equalize these disparities)

Understands the role of political ideology, religion, and ethnicity in shaping modern governments (e.g., the strengths of democratic institutions and civic culture in different countries and challenges to civil society in democratic states; how successful democratic reform movements have been in challenging authoritarian governments in Africa, Asia, and Latin America; the implications of ethnic, religious, and border conflicts on state-building in the newly independent republics of Africa; significant differences among nationalist movements in Eastern Europe that have developed in the 20th century, how resulting conflicts have been resolved, and the outcomes of these conflicts)

Understands the impact of population pressure, poverty, and environmental degradation on the breakdown of state authority in various countries in the 1980s and 1990s, and international reaction to the deterioration of these states

Understands the effectiveness of United Nations programs (e.g., improvements in health and welfare, whether UN programs have been cost-effective, whether programs fulfilled the purpose for which they were created, reasons for economic and arms embargoes sponsored by U.N. resolutions and the political and economic consequences for the sanctioned countries)

Understands global development and environmental issues

- Upper Elementary (Grades 3-5)

Knows the relationship between population growth and resource use

Knows the ways in which resources can be managed and why it is important to do so

Knows how differences in perception affect people's interpretations of the world

Knows human-induced changes that are taking place in different regions and the possible future impacts of these changes (e.g., development and conservation issues in terms of the wetland of coastal New Jersey)

- Middle School/Jr. High (Grades 6-8)

Understands how the interaction between physical and human systems affects current conditions on Earth (e.g., relationships involved in economic, political, social, and environmental changes; geographic impact of using petroleum, coal, nuclear power, and solar power as major energy sources)

Understands the possible impact that present conditions and patterns of consumption, production and population growth might have on the future spatial organization of Earth

Knows how the quality of environments in large cities can be improved (e.g., greenways, transportation corridors, pedestrian walkways, bicycle lanes)

Understands why different points of view exist regarding contemporary geographic issues (e.g., a forester and a conservationist debating the use of a national forest, a man and a woman discussing gender-based divisions of labor in a developing nation)

- High School (Grades 9-12)

Understands the concept of sustainable development and its effects in a variety of situations

Understands why policies should be designed to guide the use and management of Earth's resources and to reflect multiple points of view (e.g., the inequities of access to resources, political and economic power in developing countries, the impact of a natural disaster on a developed country vs. a developing country)

Understands contemporary issues in terms of Earth's physical and human systems (e.g., the processes of land degradation and desertification, the consequences of population growth or decline in a developed economy, the consequences of aa world temperature increase)

Knows environmental and external factors that affect individual and community health

- Primary (Grades K-2)

Knows sources and causes of pollution (e.g., air, ground, noise, water, food) in the community

- Upper Elementary (Grades 3-5)

Knows how the physical environment can impact personal health (e.g., the effects of exposure to pollutants)

Knows how individuals, communities, and states cooperate to control environmental problems and maintain a healthy environment

Knows how personal health can be influenced by society (e.g., culture) and science (e.g., technology)

- Middle School/Jr. High (Grades 6-8)

Knows cultural beliefs, socioeconomic considerations, and other environmental factors within a community that influence the health of its members (e.g., relationship of values, socioeconomic status, and cultural experiences to the selection of health-care services)

- High School (Grades 9-12)

Knows how the health of individuals can be influenced by the community (e.g., information offered through community organizations; volunteer work at hospitals, food banks, child care centers)

Knows how individuals can improve or maintain community health (e.g., becoming active in environmental and economic issues that affect health, assisting in the development of public health policies and laws, exercising voting privileges)

Understands how the environment influences the health of the community (e.g., environmental issues that affect the food supply and the nutritional quality of food)
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