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ME Ancient Civilizations

ME Ancient Civilizations






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  • Introduce geographic features from Fact #1 and have students label and color a blank map. It is recommended that they label these specific nations as well: Egypt, Israel, Turkey, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan although this need not be assessed. END DAY ONE
  • Have students to refer to their maps from the previous day. Let them know that this region is considered the “Cradle of Civilization.” Ask them what they think that means. Ask them what physical features of the region would lead help civilizations develop. Prompt students to address the rivers, especially the Tigris and Euphrates, as a region conducive to farming and population growth. Introduce the concept of the “fertile crescent.”
  • View the segment “Ancient Middle East” from video “Culture and Math: The Arabs” from www.discoveryeducation.com (formerly United Streaming; school log-in required). This clip is 4:14 minutes long and describes how farming in the fertile crescent contributed to the birth of civilization, especially Ancient Sumer.
  • Using the PowerPoint, take students through the accomplishments of other ancient civilizations: Sumer, Israel, Babylon, Phoenicia, Persia, Byzantines, and Muslims (Ottoman, Safavid, and Mughal Empires). In lieu of taking notes during the presentation, have students complete a “Table Rally” at the conclusion.
  • Debrief results from the 3-2-1 responses. Discuss with students the “surprises.” Have students discuss their perceptions about the region then vs. the region now. Students, for example, may have been surprised to learn that the region was once rich and powerful and had accomplished so much. Today, the region is often viewed as poor and war-torn. Explain to students that this is one of the reasons for the conflict today: Many Muslims feel that the West dismisses the accomplishments of the civilizations that grew out of the Middle East and that, currently, Western culture is overshadowing or destroying Islamic culture. END DAY TWO

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