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Mayan Civilization 6 th Grade World History Mrs. Merritt 2014-15.

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Presentation on theme: "Mayan Civilization 6 th Grade World History Mrs. Merritt 2014-15."— Presentation transcript:

1 Mayan Civilization 6 th Grade World History Mrs. Merritt

2 Settlement Settlement began in the lowlands of what is now Guatemala. This wooded area is called the Peten, or “flat region.” Mayas were settled in Central America.

3 Location Mayan civilization was located in the Yucatan Peninsula The Maya developed their civilization in a region known as Mesoamerica. SINKHOLES AND SWAMPS – PROVIDED FRESHWATER

4 FARMING CROPS: BEANS, SQUASH, AVOCADO, MAIZE (CORN) CLEARED TREES TO FARM THE LAND – “SLASH AND BURN” USED STONE WALLS TO MAKE FLAT TERRACES TO FARM ON THE HILLS

5 SOCIAL STRUCTURE KING: HIGHEST POSITION/REALTED TO THE GODS Priests/Merchants/Noble Warriors: Upper, power Farming Families: pay the rulers in crops, salt, cloth Slaves/servants

6 SOCIAL STRUCTURE Lower class Maya included farming families and slaves. They had the following responsibilities: Help construct temples and other buildings The men farmed, hunted, and crafted tools Had to pay their rulers with crops, salt, and cloth Most Maya belonged to the lower class.

7 Government City-states Each had it’s own government and king

8 RELIGION Polytheistic (many Gods): Sun God, moon goddess, maize god Gave blood (piercing tongue/skin, human sacrifice) to please the gods and prevent disaster Priests led ceremonies on the tops of temples

9 ACHIEVEMENTS Observatories: buildings used to study the sky and the stars Created a number system with zero 365-day calendar: agriculture 260-day calendar Writing system: Sounds and objects Architecture: temples, pyramids Bark paper books Jade and gold jewelry

10 Achievements ScienceMathArt and Architecture Built observatories Developed two calendars Could measure time Created number system Measured time Among the first to use a symbol for “0” Base 20 number system Developed writing system Created jade and gold crafts Built temple-pyramids

11 MAYAN DECLINE In 900, most of the Mayans had fled to the countryside. It was a gradual change that eventually led to the decline of the civilization. What led to the decline? Historians are not sure why the Maya civilization collapsed in the AD 900s. Some factors that may have caused it to disappear were: Rebelled against the kings in city-states Being forced to supply food and labor may have led the common people to rebel against Maya rulers. Increased warfare Climate changes Couldn’t produce enough food

12 MAYAN DECLINE (CON’T) What happened? Wars between the city-states, left for safety Why did they flee? Food shortages (not enough to feed all) Weather/climate changes, droughts (no rain)


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