The European Union

Overview of unit:

In seventh grade World Geography Class we will investigate the European Union including the pro’s and con’s of this supranational organization.  The unit begins by establishing student’s background knowledge about the tumultuous and violent 20th century history of Europe before establishing the need for 21st century cooperation amongst nations.  The EU currently has 28 member countries who share the benefits of their cooperation in areas such as trade and political influence on the world stage.  The member countries also endure the difficulties related to their connectedness such as financial inequalities across the continent and the mobile/transient population that has been created by opening borders.

Students will work hard to understand the vocabulary terms and concepts presented in the Europe unit.  They will make use of written text, maps, videos, pictures, slideshows/power points, lectures, simulations activities, ect. as they seek to answer the essential question for the unit, which is:

 What forces work for and against supranational cooperation among nations?

Unit Assessment:

Students will be assessed throughout the unit by a variety of means including homework assignments, class discussions, quizzes, and eventually a performance task written assignment.  The unit’s culminating task will ask students to consider if Switzerland, not currently an EU member, should join the European Union or not.  During this task students will need to think critically and decipher information from a variety of resource materials as they weigh the benefits of joining the EU against the reasons that the Swiss have given for remaining independent this long.


The European Union Unit aligns with Common Core State Standards in the following areas:


CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RH.6-8.1 Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of primary and secondary resources

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RH.6-8.4 Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including vocabulary specific to domains related to history/social studies

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RH.6-8.7 Integrate visual information (e.g. in charts, graphs, photographs, or maps) with other information in print or digital text