Saturday, January 25, 2014

Egyptian Time Lines and a Quick Look at Nubia

This week students worked hard to complete a time line of Egypt’s history. This was an opportunity to learn several things: how to prioritize an assignment, and how to chronologically match historical events with their correct picture. It was interesting to watch children figure out how they should go about the assignment. Some attacked as they always do, with energy and determination. Others were a little slower in effort and then realized they only had three days to accomplish a task they had misjudged. Completing the Egyptian time line is misleading because it is deceptively simple, yet takes some time to do. All in all however, students were diligent in getting it done, and almost everyone showed up Friday with it done.
We are actually almost finished in our study of Egypt. Next week students will learn about Nubia and Kush, Egypt’s neighbors to the south. It was the black African Pharaohs from Nubia who rescued and ruled Egypt during dynasty 25. Then the following week, after looking at Nubia, we will spend a few days getting ready for our unit final over Egypt.
Below are a few pictures showing students with their time lines and the mummy cases they worked on last week.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Egyptian Mummies and Mummification

Student interest was high this week as they learned about the procedures for Egyptian mummification, and decorated their own royal mummy case. They discovered that preservation of a body in Egypt required the soft organs be removed and stored in canopic jars in natron. Natron is basically baking soda and salt, which occurred naturally in some areas of Egypt along the banks of the Nile. It was also the preservative used to dry out the whole body so that it would be recognized for the afterlife.
Students also learned that the Egyptians did not record the process of mummification, but that the Greek historian, Herodotus, recorded what he saw about it on a visit to Egypt. Anyway, they had a fun time learning about the process and enjoyed making their own mummy cases.
This next week the children will put together a timeline of ancient Egypt, and after the timeline will examine for a brief time the Nubians, Egypt’s neighbors to the south. It’s amazing how quickly we are coming to an end of our study of the Egyptians.
Below are pictures of the cartouches kids completed last week, and students working on their mummy cases.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

What’s In a Name?

This week students created their own Egyptian cartouche. A cartouche is basically a name holder for a pharaoh’s name and is in the shape of an oval. They were placed at the entrance of the pharaoh’s tomb, which archeologists would use to identify whose tomb they had found. So, students had fun writing their names using hieroglyphs within a cartouche, as well as reading about Egyptian writing, and decoding some hieroglyphs in their homework.
Next week they will be learning about mummification and making mummy cases for a pharaoh or queen. These mummy cases will be due on Friday for ALL Seahawks Social Studies students and show the student’s personality as they decorate them.
Meanwhile, students in periods 2, 4, and 7 are working on a mini-research essay about a favorite pharaoh, queen, or monument. We did research over the last two weeks and now they are writing their rough drafts, with their final drafts due on Thursday. They are excellent workers and have been busy practicing their writing skills.
Below are pictures of students working on their cartouches. Next weekend I hope to put up pictures showing their cartouches on the bulletin board.