What Happened in Period 1 AP World History?

As the first period of AP World History comes to a close, it’s time to reflect on the significant events that shaped the world from 8000 BCE to 600 BCE.

The Emergence of Early Humans

During this period, early humans emerged as hunter-gatherers and began to settle in villages. The Neolithic Revolution brought about a significant change as agriculture became an essential part of their lives. It was during this time that humans started domesticating animals and growing crops, which led to surplus food production.

The Rise of Civilization

Around 3000 BCE, civilizations began to develop in various parts of the world. In Mesopotamia, the Sumerians developed a complex society with advanced technologies like writing and irrigation systems. Egypt also emerged as a powerful civilization with its vast empire and impressive architectural achievements like the Pyramids.

The Indus Valley Civilization

In the Indus Valley region of South Asia, another great civilization emerged around 2500 BCE. The Indus Valley Civilization had an advanced urban system with well-planned cities and sophisticated drainage systems. They also had an extensive trade network with other civilizations.

The Shang Dynasty in China

In China, the Shang Dynasty emerged around 1700 BCE, marking the beginning of Chinese history. The Shang Dynasty was known for its bronze metallurgy and oracle bones used for divination.

The Olmec Civilization in Mesoamerica

In Mesoamerica, the Olmec Civilization flourished from 1200 BCE to 400 BCE. They are known for their colossal stone heads and sophisticated calendar system.


Overall, period one of AP World History laid the foundation for human civilization as we know it today. From early humans to the rise of civilizations in different parts of the world, this period served as a crucial turning point in human history.