Global Health Equity: History of Epidemics


I teach history because I believe an understanding of past events is crucial to helping students, and ourselves, understand the world as it currently exists.

Essential Questions:

  • Which diseases have caused the most significant epidemics in world history?
  • What are the political and social conditions that have been most conducive to the spread of epidemic diseases
  • How can historians and political scientists use their knowledge of these conditions to help prevent the development of future pandemics?

Concepts and Content:

The students will know and understand…

  • the most important pandemics in world history, from ancient times to the present
  • the role of governments in stopping, or helping to spread, diseases within their borders
  • the role of doctors and organizations, including Partners in Health, in helping to prevent future pandemics


The students will be able to…

  • understand the extent of past pandemics in world history
  • analyze the effect that government policy can have on poor and marginalized individuals in societies as epidemic diseases spread through communities
  • understand the importance of good government in preventing the spread of such diseases

Learning Activities:

  • Two Carrollton students from the school’s Social Studies Honor Society (SSHS), Sydney Sariol and Tanya Eathakotti, will convene a panel on the subject, for which they will invite both local and national experts on epidemic diseases for a discussion of their history, as well as the political and social conditions that contributed to, or helped to stop, these diseases from spreading.
  • The students will be coordinating the efforts to find and invite experts, and a full list will be available once these invitations have been made.

Goals and Criteria:

Goal three: Educate to a social awareness which impels action.

  • The school educates to a critical consciousness that leads its total community to analyze and reflect on the values of society and to act for justice.
  • The school offers all its members opportunities for direct service and advocacy and instills a life-long commitment to service.
  • The school is linked in a reciprocal manner with ministries among people who are poor, marginalized and suffering from injustice.
  • In our multicultural world, the school prepares and inspires students to be active, informed, and responsible citizens locally, nationally, and globally.
  • The school teaches respect for creation and prepares students to be stewards of the earth’s resources.