For the majority of winter, students are (appropriately) in the Dark Ages...a time of transition between the 'light' of the Roman Empire and the Renaissance. During this time a variety of topics are covered both in the Islamic Empire (past unit) and in Western Europe (current unit). Students are currently studying the Vikings and their interactions with France and England.
Ask your son or daughter which Viking king united Scandinavia - their answer will probably be very familiar to you!
Students have finally finished up their articles on both the history and legacies of the Islamic Empire as well as current events regarding the Middle East and Muslims in the US today. I was very impressed not only with their independence in their planning, but the variety of topics that students chose to cover, the creativity and professionalism in the visual presentation, and their willingness to help one another with peer feedback. A couple of student examples are below.