To understand how civilizations arose in various parts of the world.
1 class period
You can begin this activity by reading with the class a brief section entitled The Four Cradles of Civilization. This mentions how the first civilizations on earth arose at separate locations in the Eastern Hemisphere –– the Middle East, Egypt, the Indus Valley of ancient India, and the Huang He Valley in China.
Students will then use the rest of the period to work on a map activity. The cradlelands and later civilizations that appeared in Asia, Africa, North America, South America, and Europe are shown on a world map on page 3C. Students use information on the map to complete paragraphs on the preceding pages. Class members start by finding the Middle East on the map and will note the list of six characteristics of this ancient civilization. The words in the list are then used to complete paragraphs in the section on the Middle East. Students continue in the same way with sections on Egypt, the Indus Valley, and the Huang He Valley.
To conclude the lesson, in a section called Other Civilizations Develop Around the World, class members will copy characteristics from each of the following civilizations (a list is provided for each one) and write them in spaces provided on the map on page 3C.
• later Chinese
Easy-to-follow Teacher Instructions and answer key included, along with a 20-question follow up quiz to measure student progress. The quiz can also be given as a homework assignment or used as a review exercise later in the school year.