Olmec Teacher Resources

Find Olmec educational ideas and activities

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Sixth graders study the Olmec civilization. They develop a map of Mexico and a map of the area of the Olmec civilization. They research Olmec art, religion, and architecture. They construct Olmec symbols including giant heads, altars, and sculptures.
The Olmec were an ancient people native to Mexico who lived from 1000-500 BC. Young artists examine the Olmec piece Seated Figure to analyze the use of body language to communicate a tone or feeling. They then use clay or play-dough to create their own expressive sculpture. Background information and images are included.
Sixth graders explore culture by analyzing the Mayan calendar. In this world history lesson plan, 6th graders discuss the geography of Mesoamerica, the communities that lived there, and the legends they are famous for. Students utilize their computers to research the Aztec, Olmec and Mayan people and to view the Mayan calendar.
Students explore theories about how the Olmec civilization influenced other Mesoamerican societies. They research the Olmecs to create a museum exhibit of their findings and reflect on how an Olmec person might have understood the culture's influence.
Students explore types of textures in sculptures. In this sculpting activity, students explore various sculptures such as the "Olmec Seated Figure." Students practice a polishing technique using sandpaper on an art piece.
Your historians and social anthropologists study the relationship between peoples of ancient Africa and ancient Mesoamerica. They relate in written or verbal form the African presence in the ancient Americas. They create their own Colossal Head of Olmec and display the final products around the school with paragraph descriptions.
Sure the ancient Mayan civilization had an advanced calendar and mathematical system, but did you know that they also played a great team sport like basketball? Invite your learners to discover the great ballcourt at Chichen Itza and ballgame of the Mayans with this engaging set of worksheets.
Introduce the first team sport to your Spanish class. You'll need to spend a day or two with computers in order to complete the WebQuest. Class members take a tour of Mesoamerica and everything related to the game with the interactive, created by the Mint Museum of Art. The resource outlines a process for looking at the information and includes a long list of questions to guide exploration.
Young scholars identify the major aspects of Olmec and Mayan civilzations, including economic, political, and religious. They list contributions of these civilizations. Students identify the Central American countries where the United States has exerted either political and or economic control in either covert or overat operations.
These slides are attractively designed but some contain a lot of text.  Cherokee, Creek, Chickasaw, Aztec, Mayan, Olmec, and Mississippi Mound Builders are the pre-colonial Native American groups detailed in this PowerPoint. The government and religious aspect for each is covered.  There is a resource link supplied at the end, but it is not active 
The ancient Native American culture groups is such a fascinating topic to teach. Provide learners with a basic understanding of the people and cultures that shaped the prehistoric Americas. Paleo-Indians, Missisipians, Clovis, Olmec, Maya, Aztec, Hohokam, Hopewell, and Anasazi are all covered in this helpful presentation. The only thing this presentation is missing is pictures.
While this presentation is somewhat lacking, it may be just enough to supplement a lesson on early civilizations. Young historians provide a brief overview of the politics, society, and technology of ancient China, Nubia, and Mesoamerica. This could use a little refinement but over all, not a bad resource.
Students identify a Mexican relic by piecing together a puzzle of the relic. In this art lesson, students color enlarged pictures of a Mexican artifact. Students color their picture and then piece them together to identify the relic.
A basic overview of the early civilizations of Central America, this slideshow would be a good foundation for a lesson on the characteristics of these three tribes. It would fold into a unit on world cultures or European exploration quite nicely.
Learners investigate U.S. history by researching the Internet and taking a test. In this American Indian group lesson, students identify the many specific Native American tribes and their geographic locations. Learners research the web and view PowerPoint presentations before completing a Native American test.
In this Mexico activity, students examine a map of the country and then respond to 21 short answer questions based on the map.
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.
In this culture worksheet, students summarize in a chart the various aspects of the Olmec and Zapotec civilizations, then write a brief paragraph about the city of Monte Alban.
Mask wearing is not just for Halloween! This attractive and informative set of worksheets discusses this important African cultural tradition, as well as a variety of other significant cultural attributes to ancient civilizations, such as divination and demographics. 
Through several organized and attractive worksheets, your learners will make a deduction about tally marks and hieroglyphics to determine what they represent in the ancient numeral system. This is a well-designed, interdisciplinary worksheet with cross-curricular connections between ancient history and math.

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