How I Am Connected to Mesopotamia

Contributor: Danielle Childers. Lesson ID: 10451

Mesopotamia! That's a mess of syllables to say! It means "land between the rivers," the home of a most ancient people and writing. Using videos and online sources, write a newspaper article about it!

categories

World, World

subject
History
learning style
Visual
personality style
Otter, Beaver
Grade Level
Primary (K-2), Intermediate (3-5)
Lesson Type
Quick Query

Lesson Plan - Get It!

Audio:

Today there are over 7 BILLION people on planet Earth!  Our brains have a hard time imagining that number.  There was a time thousands of years ago when there were a lot less people and they mainly lived in one area of the planet.  Today you will learn about this period of time.  Are you ready to journey back in time?

Around 7,000 years ago, the people that lived on Earth didn’t have homes that they lived in for long periods of time. They were called hunters and gatherers. They hunted and gathered their food from what was around them. What does hunting mean? What does it mean to gather something for food? You can learn more about what hunting and gathering means in this video, A Day in the Life of A 10-Year-Old in Ancient Britain (below):

 

As you heard in the video, since the hunters and gatherers hunted animals and gathered plants and berries, the people had to move when their food source ran out. Eventually, people learned how to farm the land. How do you think this changed the way people obtained their food?

Have you seen farm land before? If you have, what was growing on the farm land? Look at this picture and tell your teacher what you think is growing on this farm:

Farm land in Dalat, Vietnam

Image by D. Myles Cullen, U.S. Army, via Wikimedia Commons, is a work of a U.S. Army soldier or employee, taken or made as part of that person's official duties. As a work of the U.S. federal government, the image is in the public domain.

Now, think back to the video of the hunters and gatherers. If people began growing their own food on a farm, would they have to keep moving around trying to find wild food or animals? No, they wouldn’t and didn't! Once people learned how to farm, they could build homes that they would live in for a long time around that farmland. When people would build houses close to each other, they created the first small towns and villages. If people didn’t learn to farm, we probably would still be hunters and gatherers, moving from place to place looking for food. You can learn more about how humans went from hunters and gatherers to farming in this Mesopotamia From Nomads to Farmers video below:

 

People who study history as their career are called historians. Historians believe that the first villages were built in a place called the Fertile Crescent. Fertile means farm-able land, and do you know what shape a crescent is? Here is a crescent:

crescent

The Fertile Crescent was a large crescent-shaped area that was great for farming. A big part of that area was called Mesopotamia. It is a big word, but it means “land between the rivers.” Why do you think the land between rivers would be good for farming? Share your answers with your teacher.

Here is a map of the Fertile Crescent. Using your finger draw the purple crescent shape on the map. Now find the word “Mesopotamia." You will see that it is between squiggly blue lines, which are rivers:

Fertile Crescent map

Image by NormanEinstein, via Wikimedia Commons, is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license

Many important things we use today were invented in Mesopotamia! For example: the wheel, the measurement we call an hour, the measurement we call a year, writing, school (for rich boys), and the sailboat, to name a few.

Here is another resource to learn about Mesopotamia: Ancient Mesopotamia (Presentations).

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