There are many ways to approach the way history is taught. By following the curricular scope and sequence teachers can get often trapped into teaching eras of history instead of approaching broader themes that bridge time periods. These broader themes can also be smaller in that they can digested in "bite" sizes that are understandable to kids.
For example the book "This Is America" has several of these themes and if you can hold your nose in regard to the myth/reality discrepancies they can be helpful. Here's a slide show displaying them