Meso-American and Andean Civilizations Teacher Resources

Find Meso American and Andean Civilizations educational ideas and activities

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Students compare and contrast the structures of Meso-American and Andean civilizations. Using geography, they discover the landforms and climates of Central and South America. They examine the role of family structures and religious beliefs and practices. They describe the achievements in astronomy and math.
Students view a seven meter time line with a scale of one mm=1 year, and three rows (Canada, Mexico, United States). They identify civilizations on each timeline. Students determine the affect of the ability to cultivate corn on a civilizations stability. Students write an essay based on information on the timelines.
Study and compare multiple aspects of both Aztec and Inca civilizations. Young historians explain how each of the empires came to be, and how they were both defeated by the Spanish. The resource starts out as a good instructional activity, but is formatted on an incomplete template.
A study of the Aztec, Inca, and Mayan cultures is par-for-the-course for most fifth grade classrooms. This set of lesson plans is worth looking into if you are a fifth grade teacher! In them, learners focus on the geography and culture of the Meso-American civilizations. They engage in hands-on activities and a host of language arts-based activities that require them to listen, write, read, and speak in front of others. Many terrific worksheets are embedded in this fine series of plans.
Life on Earth is made possible by the unique composition of its atmosphere. Working collaboratively, a scale model is created as young scientists learn about the different layers of gas that surround the planet. Cards are included that describe the specific region of the atmosphere that each group is responsible for adding to the model. Display the final product in your classroom as you continue teaching your students about this amazing planet we call home.
Fifth graders distinguish between the Middle Ages and Mesoamerican images. In this sorting lesson, 5th graders view pictures of the Middle Ages and Mesoamerica and sort them into the correct group. Students use higher level thinking skills to distinguish between the pictures.
Students examine the complex development of Aztec society. In this early civilizations lesson, students use a variety of maps to obtain knowledge about geographic and historical information. They consider various aspects of Ancient American society, such as early writing and how they shifted from Hunter Gather's to Agriculturalist.
A well-done and informative presentation, this resource could be used to pique interest in Lousiana's history. This presentation about Poverty Point, a mound created by Native Americans, is a fascinating exploration of this topic. What is most interesting about the subject is what we don't know. This presentation discussed the things that are verifiable, such as the size of the mounds, and the issues that are still under debate, like the purpose of the formations.
Fifth graders use the internet to research the history of cultures throughout the world. In groups, they disucss the meaning of various symbols and view Tenochtitlan as a center of power and wealth. They use everyday materials to create a model of the city and share it with the class. To end the lesson plan, they write an evaluation on their work and answer discussion questions.
Is there anything better than chocolate? This series of cross-curricular lessons lays out five to seven days of a study on chocolate. Over these days, learners watch video clips about how chocolate is made, compose poems and legends, complete a map and timeline of the history of chocolate, and interact directly with chocolate. Complete with short informational texts, options for evaluation, and extensions, this unit could be used as is or altered to suit your classroom needs.
Students explore Native American self determination. In this Native American history and writing lesson, students discuss and summarize the main points of the Self Determination Act after viewing an interview of a current Montana tribe leader. Students work in groups to research current issues that have been influenced by the Self Determination Act and present an oral report on their findings.
Students watch a video and complete an online scavenger hunt to explore Incan civilization. In this Age of Exploration lesson plan, students read about Pizarro and role-play figures to recreate the events. Students create vocabulary flashcards and a podcast about Pizarro's conquest and present them to the class.
Students research and plan a Mississippian garden.  In this Native American history instructional activity, students work in groups to research crops used by Native Americans in the Mississippian Period and use the information to plan and create an illustration of their group's garden.
Young scholars create a time line and map about how chocolate traveled the world. In this chocolate lesson plan, students also create and taste chocolate.
Ninth graders examine causes and effects of the Uluburun shipwreck. In groups, they develop their own ways to categorize the artifacts found on the ship and decide on the research questions they are going to focus on. They use the information they collect to organize it in a database and share their results with the class.
In this weather worksheet, 7th graders study words associated with land and weather. Students complete a crossword with 7 questions and fill in the blanks going both across and down in the puzzle.
Students examine and discuss the meanings of the various symbols in Tenochtitlan. In groups, they complete a part of the model of the city and discuss the importance of finding artifacts. Individually, they choose an a two-dimensional object, identify its characteristics and the elements of design found on the object. To end the lesson, they also build models of the Mayan pyramids.
The author of this presentation elaborates on the details of insect classification, information apparently required to become a master gardener in the horticulture program at Oregon State University. Though lengthy (110 slides), it is an outstanding collection of photos, graphs, and diagrams to educate the viewer in basic entomology. Not only could this be used as a resource for horticulture classes, it can even stand as an introduction to a college entomology course. 
Students list different forms of communication, assess importance of writing, read and discuss article "String, and Knot, Theory of Inca Writing", research system of writing, and create "How It Works" posters.
Practicing paleontologists map the geologic time scale, simulate the formation of sedimentary rock, and analyze fossil data. Instructions for four activities and five assessment choices are provided for the teacher. This comprehensive lesson plan thoroughly exposes learners to the stages of evolution as evidenced by the fossil record. 

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