Mesoamerica Activities Ancient Maya Inca Aztec Mesoamerica Civilizations Mexico

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It's hard finding useful resources for Mesoamerica instruction. My students loved the chinampa building!
My students were always engaged by the activities from this resource. It was easy to use. Thank you!

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    Looking for Mesoamerica Activities for your classroom? This Mesoamerica Activities Resource Bundle is packed with 6 StudentSavvy resources covering the Olmec, Mayan, Aztec, and Inca civilizations. This bundle includes Interactive Notebooks, Reading Passages, Interactive PowerPoint, STEM Challenges, Google Classroom Student Projects, and Assessments / Exams / Tests.

    The Interactive Notebook contains cut and paste learning materials for topics such as Mesoamerica, Slash & Burn Agriculture, Cacao, Maize, The Ball Game, Maya Classic Period, Aztec Empire, Inca Empire, and more! The Reading Passages include five passages covering Mesoamerica, The Olmec, The Mayan Civilization, The Aztec Empire, and The Inca Empire.

    The Interactive PowerPoint covers the same topics and more, providing an engaging virtual classroom experience.

    The STEM Challenges included in this bundle are perfect for upper elementary students studying Ancient Civilizations and include Floating Gardens / Chinampas and Aztec Calendar Coding.

    In addition, this bundle comes with 3 digital projects that students can complete using Google Slides, including an Info-graphic / Poster Project, a Timeline Project, and a Brochure Project.

    Finally, this bundle includes an Assessment with 18 questions that test students' knowledge of Mesoamerican vocabulary, history, and culture. Get your hands on this Mesoamerica Activities Resource Bundle today and make your classroom come alive with the vibrant history and culture of Central America and Mexico!

    This bundled product contains the following 6 Mesoamerica StudentSavvy resources:

    Interactive Notebook

    Reading Passages

    Interactive PowerPoint

    STEM Challenges

    Google Classroom Student Projects

    Assessments / Exam / Test

    More information on each resource:

    -Interactive Notebook

    This product contains interactive cut and paste learning material for students to create an organized social studies interactive notebook. Answer Key Included!

    Topics covered in this unit include: Mesoamerica, Olmec Society, Slash & Burn Agriculture, Cacao, Maize, The Ball Game, Mapping Skills, Maya Classic Period, Hieroglyphs, Maya Social Classes, Palenque City, Codex, Mayan Calendar, Aztec Empire, Causeways, Chinampas, Inca Empire, The Incan Army, Francisco Pizarro, Spanish Conquistador, Tribute, Stela, Quipu, Hernan Cortes, Andes Region, Chasquis, Inca Religion, and More!

    -Reading Passages

    Questions & Answer Keys for Each of the 5 Reading Passages! COMMON CORE ALIGNED! Quick overview of topics covered in this resource include:

    1.) Mesoamerica: Where Many Civilizations Flourished

    -Overview of the territories, varying landforms, and climate of Mesoamerica

    -Overview of the civilizations that existed there (Olmec, Maya, and Aztecs)

    -Natural resources found there (jade, obsidian, seashells, shark teeth)

    -The slash-and-burn agriculture technique

    -Describes how they used cacao and maize – the Mayan god of Maize

    Keywords: Mesoamerica obsidian, jade, cacao, slash & burn agriculture, maize

    2.) The Mother Culture of Mesoamerica: The Olmec

    -Overviews of their society, culture, and timeline – made up of farmers, fishermen, artisans. Mud buildings by the rivers.

    -crops include maize, squash, beans, sweet potatoes

    -Describes the San Lorenzo city

    -Describes The Ball Game

    -Overview of traditions that were later adopted by other civilizations

    Keywords: mother culture, maize, The Ball Game

    3.) The Advancements of the Mayan Civilization

    -Overviews of territories, locations, and timeline of Mayan Civilization

    Describes hierarchy and social class

    -Overview of their writing system (Hieroglyphs) and codex (books)

    -Description of the Mayan Calendar

    -Overview of the Palenque City and its uses (plazas for public gatherings, ball court for ball game, canals, terraces, etc)

    Keywords: codex, Mayan calendar, Palenque City

    4.) The Rise and Fall of the Aztec Empire

    -Overview of territories, locations, and timeline of Aztec Empire

    -overview of crops grown and chinampas

    -description of other advancements (causeways, aqueducts, and macuahuitl)

    -overview of society and social classes

    -describes the Spanish conquest and Hernan Cortes – how the Aztec empire fell – four factors

    Keywords: causeway, aqueduct, tribute, chinampas, conquistadors, calpullis, Spanish Conquest

    5.) The History of the Inca Empire

    -Overview of territories, locations, and timeline of the Inca Empire

    -description of advancements (medical and quipu)

    -description of religion

    -description of chasquis (runners)

    -overview of the Incan army – most powerful army in the Andes.

    -description of how Francisco Pizarro led an expedition that ended the Inca Empire

    Keywords: quipu, chasqui


    Interactive PowerPoint

    This teaching resource is quite the virtual experience! This Medieval Times / Ancient Civilizations PowerPoint can be used as a powerful classroom presentation or students can click their way through it on individual computers.

    ***This product was created with the latest version of PowerPoint (2016). The effects and transitions may not display properly on older versions. Please use the Google Slides version if students are using Chromebooks.

    Topics covered in this unit include: Mesoamerica, Olmec Society, Slash & Burn Agriculture, Cacao, Maize, The Ball Game, Mapping Skills, Maya Classic Period, Hieroglyphs, Maya Social Classes, Palenque City, Codex, Mayan Calendar, Aztec Empire, Causeways, Chinampas, Inca Empire, The Incan Army, Francisco Pizarro, Spanish Conquistador, Tribute, Stela, Quipu, Hernan Cortes, Andes Region, Chasquis, Inca Religion, and More!


    -STEM Challenges

    Cross-curricular challenges for students who are studying Ancient Civilizations, Middle Ages, and/or Medieval Times!

    This resource has science, technology, engineering, and measurement activities to do with your upper elementary kids that will really enhance their learning!

    There are 2 Mesoamerica STEM Challenges in this pack. Each STEM Challenge has detailed directions, photo examples, a list of materials needed, prediction section, brainstorming section, trials 1, 2, & 3, final results section with drawings, and a reflection section.

    The STEM Challenges include:

    1. Floating Gardens / Chinampas

    The Aztec built floating gardens by weaving sticks together to create a giant raft. Using a list of supplies, STEM teams must design and build floating gardens (Chinampas). The STEM teams must test materials that can support the weight of a garden while floating in water. Their design must have soil, seeds (or plants), a bin filled with water, and floating devices for their garden. They must have at least 3 Chinampas in their design...(more instructions and planning pages are given in the resource)

    2. Aztec Calendar Coding

    Using a list of supplies, STEM teams will first create a Mesoamerican calendar. On the calendar, students must decide on made-up symbols that represent letters of the alphabet. They must create an answer key of their symbols that correlate with the letters A-Z. Their calendar will have a coded message. The message must be a prediction about the future and it must contain at least five words. Different colored symbols can be used as a clue for students to know how many letters each word contains in the sentence. When multiple groups are finished, they can give their calendar codes to each other and try to guess what the other group’s message is. ..... (more instructions and planning pages are given in the resource)


    -Google Classroom Student Projects

    3 digital projects for your students!

    This product contains 3 digital projects that students can complete using Google Slides! This resource has a brochure project, a timeline project, and a info-graphic / poster project.

    Each student-centered project has a sample project, answer key, and detailed project instructions for the students.

    Info-graphic / Poster Project

    Students pick a topic that they would like to research on Mesoamerica (Ex: The Olmec, The Ball Game, Mayan Civilization, Aztec Empire, Quipu, etc.) All of the elements in the info-graphic must be organized, clearly visible, and well placed. Creativity with color and photos is a must! **More instructions found in the resource

    Timeline Project

    Using a template, students design a timeline of important events during the Mesoamerica period. Students can add images, text, and other media to their timelines.

    It is up to the teacher to add or change time periods that align with school resources.

    Brochure Project

    Using a template, students design a brochure that highlights important facts and topics of Mesoamerica such as: Mesoamerican Agriculture, Olmec Society, Mayan Civilization, Aztec Empire, The Inca, etc.


    -Exam - Test - Assessment

    This resource contains an assessment that has vocabulary matching, fill in the blank, short answer, essay, and an info-graphic. It has 18 questions total.

    It also contains an ANSWER KEY and an EDITABLE PowerPoint file.

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    ©2019 StudentSavvy All rights reserved by author. Permission to copy for single classroom use only. Electronic distribution limited to single classroom use only. (unless you purchase the multiple license)

    Total Pages
    140 pages
    Answer Key
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    to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
    Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of primary and secondary sources.
    Determine the central ideas or information of a primary or secondary source; provide an accurate summary of the source distinct from prior knowledge or opinions.
    Identify key steps in a text’s description of a process related to history/social studies (e.g., how a bill becomes law, how interest rates are raised or lowered).
    Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including vocabulary specific to domains related to history/social studies.
    Describe how a text presents information (e.g., sequentially, comparatively, causally).


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