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Ancient World Was Ancient Sumer a Civilization? Day 1.

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1 Ancient World Was Ancient Sumer a Civilization? Day 1

2 Preview Scientists sometimes describe a society or group of humans as “highly civilized.” What do you think this means? Complete the spokes of the diagram on your handout with words that describe characteristics of a society that is highly civilized. For each spoke, draw and label a simple example of that description using a simple illustration.

3 Objectives Students will –identify characteristics of civilization. –analyze artifacts from ancient Sumer and explain how they are examples of the various characteristics of civilization. –identify which Sumerian achievements most affect modern life –identify modern-day artifacts that are examples of characteristics of civilization.

4 Introduction Sumer was a region located on the southern Mesopotamian plains. It was settled around 3500 B.C.E. by Mesopotamians who were later known as Sumerians. Sumer extended over 10,000 square miles—an area about the size of the state of Maryland—and consisted of various powerful city-states, such as Lagash, Ur, and Uruk. Mammoth Bone Hut

5 The Sumerian environment had a number of disadvantages—hot summers, a lack of rainfall, and rivers that flooded unpredictably. Historians believe the Sumerians’ struggles with this harsh environment inspired some of their greatest achievements. Many inventions, such as writing, the plow, and the sailboat, were adapted by other civilizations, and some are still in use today. For these reasons, some historians refer to Sumer as the “cradle of civilization.” Introduction

6 Let’s read 5.1, the introduction, together. –When did archeologists begin finding artifacts in the region of Mesopotamia?

7 Introduction –Sketch in the current countries that comprise the “Fertile Crescent.” –In what country can Mesopotamia be found today?

8 Introduction – What one artifact helped us to learn a great deal about Sumer? – Describe this artifact:

9 Characteristics of Civilizations Read section 5.2. As you read, take notes over the seven characteristics of civilization.

10 Characteristics of Civilizations A stable food supply – so that people have the food they need to survive A social structure – with different social levels and jobs A system of government – so that life in the society is orderly A religious system -which involves a set of beliefs and forms of worship A highly developed culture – that includes arts such as painting, architecture, music, and literature Advances in technology A highly developed written language

11 Textbook Reading Read the remainder of chapter 5, taking notes as you read. Afterwards, you will complete an activity using your information. Timer

12 Skill Builder Activity Get into pairs. Posted around the room are placards of Sumerian achievements with a corresponding textual explanation. You will analyze each achievement to determine which characteristic of civilization it represents. For each circle on your diagram, make a simple drawing of each artifact you analyzed that you think is an example of that characteristic of civilization and write a sentence: (name of artifact) relates to this characteristic of civilization because… Remember: Most placards must be placed under more than one characteristic. You will become an expert on the last placard you are at when time runs out and will present that placard to the rest of the class. Timer

13 Gently remove the placard you are currently standing by and create a human spectrum at the front of the class, from “greatly influences today’s society” at one end to “doesn’t influence today’s society” at the other end. Be prepared to defend your placement on the spectrum to the teacher and classmates. Also, you will describe the characteristics your placard represents with a reason why it fits with that characteristic Students may challenge your choice and you will need to defend your choice or move to a different area on the spectrum if you agree with the challenge. Return your placard to it’s former location (please be careful with the placards!) Human Spectrum

14 Process Draw or find pictures of modern items that are examples of each characteristic of civilization and, as you place them on your spoke diagram, write a justification for the placement.

15 Activity Notes Review

16 5.3 Notes: Stable Food Supply The clay tablet relates to this characteristic of civilization because it tells that the Sumerians raised barley. The stone seal showing plowing relates to this characteristic of civilization because it shows Sumerians preparing fields.

17 Water and Irrigation

18 Why did civilizations often develop in river valleys? Why did Sumerians develop irrigation, while Jericho and Çatal Höyük did not? Why might Sumerians believe the gods caused their floods?

19 Domestication of Animals

20 What were the two main purposes of domesticating animals? What role did animals play in religion? How do you think this role developed?

21 5.4 Notes: Social Structure The statue of a chariot relates to this characteristic of civilization because it shows a military class. The gold cup relates to this characteristic of civilization because it indicates a craftsperson and an upper class. The clay seal of the king appointing a governor relates to this characteristic of civilization because it shows a government class. The lyre relates to this characteristic of civilization because it indicates a craftsperson and an upper class that is entertained by music. The clay tablet relates to this characteristic of civilization because it indicates a class of scribes and workers.

22 5.5 Notes: Government The clay tablet relates to this characteristic of civilization because it shows that government officials distributed grain. The copper statue of a chariot relates to this characteristic of civilization because it shows that was an army. The clay seal relates to this characteristic of civilization because it indicates there were governors and a king. The statue of a king carrying a basket relates to this characteristic of civilization because it illustrates there was a king. The lyre relates to this characteristic of civilization because it indicates there was a queen.

23 Security

24 What was the role of the king? What was the role of the army? Why might the various city-states have attacked each other so frequently? What positive interactions might there have been between the city-states?

25 5.6 Notes: Religion The statue of a king carrying a basket relates to this characteristic of civilization because it indicates that one of the king’s duties was to build temples. The stone seal relates to this characteristic of civilization because it shows two gods. The statue of a married couple relates t this characteristic of civilization because it was found in a shrine and might have been a gift to the gods.

26 Religion

27 Why might the temple be located in the center of the city? What role did the temple play in Sumerian life? Why do you think religion was such an important part of Sumerian life?

28 5.7 Notes: The Arts The statue of a married couple relates to this characteristic of a civilization because it shows there were sculptures. The lyre relates to this characteristic of civilization because it shows Sumerians had music. The statue of a king carrying a basket relates to this characteristic of a civilization because it shows they had metalworkers and architects for the temples. The gold cup relates to this characteristic of a civilization because it shows there were skilled metalworkers.

29 5.8 Notes: Technology The copper statue of a chariot relates to this characteristic of a civilization because it shows the Sumerians had developed the wheel.

30 5.9 Notes: Writing The clay tablet, clay seal, stone seal, and statue of a king carrying a basket all relate to this characteristic of a civilization because they all have writing on them.

31 Invention and Creativity

32 What allowed the Sumerians free time in which to develop innovations? What were some of the main inventions of the Sumerians and why were each invented/what was their purpose? Describe how and why cuneiform changed over time. How was writing used in Sumer?


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