World History I: Ancient to Early Modern Times

(8 customer reviews)

From: $92.00 / month for 8 months

Grades:  9th–12th (8th with prior permission)

Class:  Tue 4:00–5:15 p.m. ET

Level: Regular (R) and Honors (H)

Dates:  Aug 26, 2024–May 9, 2025

Prepaid:  $649 (R) $699 (H) (includes texts)

Instructor:  Lisa Hawkins 

See a sample of one of Lisa’s classes

See Reviews of Instructor Lisa Hawkins


Course Description

World History I Syllabus

This live, graded world history class traces the social, economic, and political development of world civilizations and the growth of important ideas from ancient times through the Early Modern Period. Live class sessions will cover both Western and non-Western cultures, with particular attention devoted to the history of China and surrounding regions, India, the Mediterranean World, and Europe.

Outside of class time, students complete lessons focused on particular topics in Modern World History (either audio-visual or text-based, depending on learning style), deepen their understanding of world geography, learn how to interpret primary documents, and delve deeper into related topics of their choosing. Monthly quizzes based on live class sessions and weekly history lessons encourage the students to synthesize the historical content they are encountering. Students are given two chances on every monthly quiz.

Students will master much historical content. They also have plenty of opportunities to think critically about what they are learning. Our time together is built around questions that I pepper throughout our live sessions. For example:

  • When we discuss the ancient Greeks, I ask students, “What options does a society have when they don’t have enough resources to feed their people?”
  • When we’re talking about the Middle Ages, I ask, “Why would people who are living in oppressed conditions continue to go along with the status quo?”
  • When we’re talking about worldviews in medieval Europe, I ask, “Why do you think this time period was not famous for many rebellions against the status quo?”

Student contributions get woven in meaningful ways into the class material. My aim is to make the course as interactive and thought-provoking as possible. I’m also interested in all of us having a good time together while we learn history. From the feedback I’ve received over the years from parents and students, I am confident that I’ve been able to create a class environment where we have a lot of fun while exploring the past and improving critical thinking skills.

Course Structure

The course is built on a pattern of eight Units, each containing four weeks: Weeks A, B, C, and D. Certain assignment types fall dependably on particular weeks so that students and parents can rely on a regular, repeated schedule of work throughout the year.

Live class sessions are designed to engage students at different levels. Homework assignments are designed to meet the needs of the average student. However, for families who wish a more challenging, honors-level course, additional homework and testing expectations can be added to the course. Parents simply have to contact me to opt their students into the honors-level track. For the typical student, weekly workloads should average about 4 or 5 hours.

For families who are interested in a more detailed example of how our live sessions tend to operate, please click on this link to watch a 20 minute compilation of four short excerpts from a Modern European History class on World War I.

Honors Level

Students at the honors level in World History I do a significant project each semester, with detailed instructions provided for them. For the first semester, students design their own ancient civilization, addressing several topics (geography, leadership structure, religion), demonstrating their understanding of how ancient civilizations were affected by the landscape, resources, and other people groups near them. They create a presentation (preferably audio-visual) to introduce their civilization.  In the second semester, students create a “class” on ancient and medieval Japan, using my own question-driven classes as a model.  In addition, students at the honors level also read about 4 extra lessons each month. They need to take notes on those lessons. The notes should be detailed enough to act as a study aid if a test were given. They also need to generate at least one good historical research question based on the information in each lessons.  There will not be additional quizzes or exams for honors level, unless a parent opts into a midterm and final for the student to take. If a student signs up for honors level at the beginning of the year through Aim Academy, but at some point later in the year needs to drop to the regular level, that can be done with no grade penalty.

Who should enroll?

This course is designed for 9th-12th graders, although parents of mature 8th graders can contact me about the possibility of their son/daughter joining. I have had 8th graders enjoy and have success with the course in the past.

Technology Requirements

  • High speed, broadband Internet
  • Sound card and microphone (for live sessions)
  • Streaming video capabilities to watch recorded lectures

Evaluation and Feedback

The course is designed to improve critical thinking and historical reasoning skills particularly during our live class sessions. Regular homework assignments promote mastery of content.


Parents and students are encouraged to contact me through the Canvas messaging system. Generally speaking, I respond within one business day.

Required Texts


  • Instead of using a traditional textbook, this course will have students learning historical material from a variety of sources, both written and audio-visual. One of them is, a company that has compiled thousands of educational resources, created by professional educators.
  • In addition, the teacher will upload customized history readings to serve in the place of a traditional textbook, containing both secondary material (material written by historians about the topics we are studying) and primary material (documents written in the time period we are studying).
  • Students will be able to read this material directly from the course website, or if they prefer, print it out. Access to these materials is included in the course tuition.


8 reviews for World History I: Ancient to Early Modern Times

  1. Angelic H.

    I have taken Mrs. Hawkins for both 10th and 11th grade, in US History and World History II. Her lectures are interactive and she encouraged a sort of community between the students as her questions and student answers were discussion oriented. Everyone had a say, even if it was just carrot tops! She was also considerate and understanding of extensions and time conflicts when needed! She is always willing to help aid students in lectures and with resources in order to give us the greatest chance to succeed!

  2. Hannah C.

    The class is awesome! You do such a great job of keeping everything interesting and fun, and I think that your teaching style is effective and informative.

  3. G. Hocker (verified owner)

    Lisa Hawkins is the teacher I always wanted when I was in high school. We have had two girls complete two years each of history with Lisa, so we’ve all been learning as a family for several years now. Lisa loves history, so now our girls do. The assignments are challenging but doable, and the testing is fair. Some of the highlights are reading the original sources (Nietzsche, Marx, Hobbes) and trying to make sense of the big ideas of history as a family. One of my daughters did a project this year and it was perfect timing as she chose China. I will also add personally that it is fun to trade some historical observations with Lisa on the American Revolution and good reads. She’s very accessible and brings the right energy to the class.

  4. Raymond P. (verified owner)

    Mrs. Hawkins is a really good teacher. She’s the kind of teacher that you wished you had in school – the one who taught AP classes and received teacher of the year awards, but not everyone had the chance to learn from. Well, I’m grateful that both my kids have had the opportunity to learn from her. Her classes are dynamic, insightful, and fun. She loves history, and she loves teaching, and she’s great at it. My kids actually understand and can discuss world history now, and honestly, I think they are better people for having been in her classes.

  5. Julie Wolf (verified owner)

    I have had two sons that have been students in Mrs. Hawkin’s class, and they both LOVED it! She made it interesting and fun for them-you can hear the passion she has for history in her classroom instruction-she will not just ask them to read and hand in assignments. She engages the students and encourages participation. She engages her students in a creative way, too. One of my sons who already loved history grew to love it more, and the other one who wasn’t that interested loves history now. I really appreciate this as I know how dry classroom instruction and boring assignments can kill a student’s love for history. I highly recommend this class!!!!!

  6. Emily H. Sugar Land, TX (verified owner)

    After a well-respected friend raved about her student’s experience with Mrs. Hawkins, my daughters took World History with Mrs. Hawkins, and they both had a great experience. Mrs. Hawkins knows the subject inside and out, and it shows in her enthusiasm for teaching it to her students. She makes class time exciting and motivates the students to enjoy the lessons. I’m sure we’ll register my son for Mrs. Hawkins’s World History when he’s in high school.

  7. Christine Atherley

    I have two high school students that took Mrs. Hawkins Western Civ I class this past year and they loved it. My 9th grader will be taking her Western Civ II class in the Fall and my 10th grader will be moving on to her American History class. She is a wonderful teacher, a pleasure to listen to and has given both of my children a deeper love of history and learning. They worked harder for Mrs. Hawkins than they had previously in their homeschool co-op and I appreciated her level of expectations and assignments. Additionally, Mrs. Hawkins is very thorough in her explanations and responds immediately to emails. Aim Academy has been a wonderful experience and we will continue to pursue classes here because of the quality of teachers like Mrs. Hawkins.

  8. Ginny B.(Mom of former & Future Aim Academy Student)

    This was the first class my daughter took with Mrs. Hawkins, two years ago. (The original review is tied to the US History class.) Since that time she has also taken US History as well. I cannot say enough about her teaching style. Her classes have made it an enjoyable high school experience for her and an enriching one. She intensely disliked history prior to Mrs Hawkins’ classes.I am really grateful for that as I wanted her to enjoy her homeschool journey. Her love of history definitely comes out in her teaching. I have no problem keeping up with how she is doing as the grades are available for parents to view, along with the entire course requirements. She is also quite accessible and responded well to all of my inquiries. I only wish she was teaching economics/government or another type of history class so that I can sign her up for it. I also hope her college teachers are exactly like Mrs. Hawkins.

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Instructor Bio

Lisa Hawkins

I love history, I love teaching, and I love students. I put a great deal of thought and time into constructing courses that are engaging, challenging, and well-organized. I also care a great deal about humanizing the on-line experience, and you will see that priority woven into many aspects of my course. I majored in history at Swarthmore College, where I also earned my high-school teaching certification. I also did graduate work at Widener University with a focus on English and education. I am also an official grader of AP US History exams, receiving extensive training in the process and participating in College Board and ETS seminars. Contact: lhawkins[at]


All classes taught by Lisa Hawkins