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Geography of Ancient Greece

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1 Geography of Ancient Greece
6th Grade UBD - Unit 6 - Geography of Ancient Greece Geography of Ancient Greece

2 Preview Islands and Mountains- Ancient Greece had a very different geography than other river valley civilizations, such as Mesopotamia, India, China, and Egypt. The Persian Empire- The Persian Empire was one of the largest empires in the ancient world. It covered parts of three continents: Europe, Africa, and Asia. The Persian Wars- The Persian Wars were fought between the Persian Empire and the Greek city-states.

3 Ancient Greece Reading Handout- Ancient Greece

4 The Geography and History of Greece
Video- The Geography and History of Greece


6 Reach Into Your Background
The accomplishments of ancient Europe still have an impact on our world. What U.S. accomplishments do you know about? Think of some great things Americans have done. Explain why people remember these achievements today. ( 5 minutes)

7 Partner Activity Work with a neighbor and compare your answer with theirs. What things are the same and what things are different? (3 minutes)

8 Key Ideas- Islands and Mountains
Ancient Greece was located in southeast Europe along the Mediterranean Sea. Ancient Greece was a series of mountainous islands and peninsulas. These geographic features affected the way of life in Greece. They affected what crops people grew and how people traveled. Greek city-states developed after the Mycenaean period with each city controlling the land around it. Greek geography made it difficult for city-states to expand their territory.

9 Compare and Contrast Ancient Egypt Ancient Greece
How is the geography of these two regions similar and different? How do you think Greek civilization was affected by its geography?

10 Islands and Mountains The Greek civilization was one of the great powers of the ancient world. While many ancient civilizations began in river valleys, the Greeks settled on a group of islands and peninsulas in southeastern Europe.

11 Key Term Island- An area of land that is completely surrounded by water.

12 Key Term Peninsula-  A piece of land that is surrounded by water on three sides. 

13 Islands and Mountains Greece’s steep mountains also affected the crops and animals in the region. Farmers raised goats and sheep because they could graze on the sides of the mountains. They used goats and sheep for milk, cheese, and wool.

14 Islands and Mountains The land of the Greeks was surrounded by the Mediterranean, Ionian, and Aegean Seas, which made the Greeks adept at sea travel. 

15 Islands and Mountains The surrounding water, plus the mountainous terrain of many of the Greek islands, helped to create a sense of independence for the various Greek populations. 

16 The Science of Seafaring
Video- The Science of Seafaring

17 The Greeks and Their Land
Reading Handout- The Greeks and Their Land

18 Islands and Mountains These people formed numerous city-states for the purpose of self-government. Some of the city-states—including Mycenae, Athens, Sparta, Corinth, and Thebes—developed distinct customs and policies.

19 Key Term City-State- An independent kingdom or state made up of a city and the surrounding lands it controls.

20 The Economy of Ancient Greece
The people of ancient Greece used their geographic surroundings to their benefit. Sea travel and trade brought prosperity to many city-states, particularly those in control of important routes and waterways.

21 The Economy of Ancient Greece
Some city-states also invaded and colonized surrounding lands in order to obtain more land and resources. Although much of their land was rocky, the Greeks found ways to introduce methods of irrigation to support agriculture.

22 The Economy of Ancient Greece
Many of the Greek islands and peninsulas abounded in olives and grapes, and farmers were able to raise goats and sheep along the steep hillsides.

23 Unique City-States Greece’s geography made travel and communication difficult. As a result, it was hard to have one central government. Because of this, the city-states grew separately. The city-states were often quite different from one another because of their locations.

24 Unique City-States The Greek city-states grew in separation from one another. However, they did have some common culture and goals. When they were threatened, the Greek city-states sometimes worked together to protect themselves.

25 Unique City-States These threats often came from another great power—Persia. Persia wanted to have more power in the region. This struggle for control meant that Persia often fought with Greek city-states and colonies.

26 Summary Greece’s many mountains and seas contributed to how Greek civilization grew. Greeks used the seas to develop a rich trade with other areas. The islands and mountains led to the development of city-states rather than a united civilization. These city-states would change how future civilizations formed governments and studied the world around them.

27 Key Ideas- The Persian Empire
Cyrus of Persia united Iran under his rule. He conquered neighboring areas, establishing the Persian Empire. His successors conquered more lands until the Persian Empire stretched from Egypt to India. During their conquests, the Persians conquered several Greek colonies. King Darius organized the empire so that the Persians could control the vast and diverse land they had conquered. He created a single currency. He built roads to link his empire together.

28 Key Term Persia- The old name for current-day Iran. It serves as a bridge between the East and the West.

29 The Persian Empire The Persian Empire formed to the east of Greek civilization. Persia was a place in what is now the country of Iran. This new empire became an enemy of the Greek city-states. It wanted Greek land and power.

30 The Persian Empire Although the Greek city-states generally operated independently of one another, they sometimes joined together in the face of threats. 

31 The Persian Empire Some of the most severe threats came from the Persian Empire, a powerful empire that ultimately expanded through parts of Europe, Africa, and Asia. 

32 Key Term Cyrus the Great- United most of what is today Iran under his control and established himself as the ruler of Persia.

33 Cyrus the Great Reading Handout- Cyrus the Great

34 The Persian Empire The Persian Empire formed in approximately 548 BCE, when Cyrus the Great united much of what is today the nation of Iran. In the coming years, he conquered many surrounding lands and incorporated them into the Persian Empire.

35 The Persian Empire Darius I, continued the expansion and instituted a strong system of government control over the conquered lands. The Persian Empire’s increasing power led to conflicts with some of the Greek city-states.

36 Key Ideas- The Persian Wars
The Persian Wars united the Greek city-states together against a common Persian enemy. The mountains and islands of Greece made it difficult for the Persians to conquer all of the Greek city-states. The Greek victory against the Persians ensured that Greece would remain separate from the Persian Empire.

37 Key Term Persian Wars- A wars between the Persian empire and Greek city-states; Greek victories allowed Greek civilization to define identity.

38 The Persian Wars When some Greek city-states began to rebel against Persian domination, a group of other Greek city-states united to assist in the uprisings. 

39 Key Term Allies- A state formally cooperating with another for a military or other purpose, typically by treaty.

40 The Persian Wars The resulting conflicts between the Greek city-states and the Persian Empire are collectively known as the Persian Wars. After the rebellion ended, Darius plotted to conquer all of Greece, but his plan was halted at Marathon.

41 The Persian Wars In 480 BCE, Darius’s son, Xerxes, who was the new Persian king, launched an invasion by land and sea. 

42 Thermopylae Greek forces created a brilliant strategy, using their country’s rocky terrain to slow the advance of the huge Persian army at Thermopylae. After a fierce battle, however, the Greeks were defeated.

43 The End of the Wars It was not until a great sea battle at Salamis that the Greeks, using their famed sailing skills, gained the upper hand and eventually drove off the Persian invaders.

44 The End of the Wars The temple of Athena Nike was built as a memorial in recognition of Greek victories during the Persian Wars.

45 Independent Activity What has been the “muddiest” point so far in this lesson? That is, what topic remains the least clear to you? (4 minutes)

46 Partner Activity Work with a neighbor and compare your muddiest point with theirs. Compare what things are the same and what things are different? (3 minutes)

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