Students will collaborate in groups to come up with an African tribe identity and compete in a silent barter simulation. The lesson will include planning steps such as determining what type of tribe they want to be, and what strategy they will use to obtain their needed goods. When completed, students will reflect upon how their tribe performed and examine how the United States trades with other countries.
This lesson will involve students in a cooperative and competitive activity that encourages them to take on the perspectives of ancient African traders. The lesson contains aspects of ancient African trade, and requires students to work together collaboratively while at the same time competing in the silent barter activity without speaking. This activity has proven to be very popular over the years because it is distinct in the sense of students communicating without talking, and because they are acting out how ancient cultures interacted.