Interactive and engaging History lesson plans
City-States In Mesopotamia
PowerPoint and Keynote Presenter’s Notes
Source: World History, Patterns of Interaction
Chapter 2, Section 1
Presenters Notes, Higher Order Questions, Concepts
-City-States In Mesopotamia
-The pattern of development of this civilization has occurred many times throughout history
Chapter 2 Section 1
-Geography of the Fertile Crescent
-The first civilization in Asia 6,000 years ago.
-Developed around two rivers: Tigris & Euphrates
-The water created places to grow food
Mesopotamia: In Greek the word means land between the rivers
-Flood Waters of Life
-Every year the rivers flood
-Silt or dark soil is deposited
-Crops grown with big harvests
Wheat & Barley
-Before 4500 BC, people began to settle Southern Mesopotamia
-Around 3300 BC, Sumerians arrived
-Attracted by good soil
-Very few Natural Resources, Example: Building Materials
-No natural barriers for protection
-Drought/Flood: Periods of drought, unpredictable flooding followed by periods of drought (No Rain)
Higher Order Question: How did floods make farming difficult?
Answer: When To Plant?, Crops could be wiped out- no food!
Answer: The Transferring of goods for something of value: Example Money
-Solving Problems Through Organization
-Traded grain, cloth & tools for raw materials
Higher Order Question: What three concepts would be required for the irrigation project, defense of the city and trade?
Answer: 1. Leadership, 2. Cooperation, Organization
This was the beginning of Organized Government and Civilizations.
Sumerians Create City States
Concept: Government Systems
Answer: The institution or systems that make up the government of a state
5 Key Characteristics of Sumerian Civilization
-Describe The importance of Each:
City-States of Sumer
-By 3000 BC, the Sumerians had a large number of Cities
-A City State is much like a country today
-City-States included the city and land surrounding it.
-The center of the city was a temple: Ziggurat
-Priests and rulers appealed the the gods
-The temple was surrounded by housing
Priests & Rulers Share Control
-In early history, priests controlled the Govt.:
-Managed the Irrigation System
-Go-betweens the farmers and the gods
Higher Order Question: How did good farmland allow for specialized workers in Sumer
Answer: The abundance of food freed people up to develop other skills than farming.
-War Changes Leadership
-Before 3000 BC, priests provided leadership
-In times of war, the best warrior would take leadership
-Gradually, priests turned permanent leadership over to warriors- Frequent Wars
-As military leaders become full time rulers:
Leaders began to hand down their power to their sons: Dynasty
-After 2500 BC, Leadership based on heredity
-As the food supply grows, a surplus is created
-The surplus is used to trade for goods they don’t have
-With the development of trade, other things were traded besides food and goods.
A Religion of Many Gods
-Polytheism: Belief in Many gods, Example: Mesopotamians
-Monotheism: Belief in one God, Example: Jews, Christians and Muslims
-gods of Mesopotamia
-god of storms and air
-“The raging flood that has no rival”
-gods lived as humans but were immortal.
-Mesopotamians believed humans were at the mercy of the gods
-Pleasing The gods
-Ziggurat: Place to worship the gods
-Sacrifices: animals food, wine
-Afterlife was grim:
-No paradise, Dust & Clay
The afterlife was not good. Sumerians believed that the dead went to “the land of no return” an awful dismal place. no paradise like n Islam and Christianity.
Higher Order Question: What was the purpose of making sacrifices to the gods
Answer: People believed that giving up something of value pleased the gods: a sign of worship.
-Life In Sumerian Society
-The Top Social Classes
-Ordinary people worked in the fields and shops
-Slaves were foreigners captured in battle or children sold into slavery to pay debts of parents
-Women in Sumeria
-Women had more rights in early Sumerian Culture than most had in later civilizations
-Work as Farmers, Artisans or Merchants
-Upper Class Women Read & Write
-Sumerian Science and Technology
-The Sail, Wheel and Plow
-Arithmetic & Geometry
- Math To Build With
-Build walls and buildings
-Base 60 number system
-Architecture and Writing
-Architectural Innovations: Arches, Columns, Ramps and pyramids
-Cuneiform: Earliest form of writing and record keeping
Higher Order Thinking Question: What positive effects would writing have on society?
Answer: 1. Record Keeping, 2. Communication, 3. Record History
-History begins with writing!
The First Empire Builders
-From 3000 to 2000 BC, Sumerian City-States were constantly at war
-Constant warfare weakened the city-States and made them vulnerable to outside attack
Sargon of Akkad
-by 2350 BC, Sargon of Akkadia conquered the city-states of Sumeria
-Even though the Sumerian cities were conquered, Sargon spread Sumerian culture
-An empire is when a state controls several peoples, nations or states
-Sargon ruled all of Mesopotamia and beyond
Sargon’s dynasty lasted about 200 years. After that it declined due to in-fighting, invasions and famine.
The Babylonian Empire
-In 2000 BC, nomadic warriors, Amorites, conquered Mesopotamia
-The empire reached it’s peak during the reign of Hammurabi (1792-1750 BC)
Amorites came from present day Syria
-Hammurabi used a uniform set of laws to unify the different peoples of his empire
-Hammurabi made stone copies of all his laws and placed them everywhere
Higher Order Thinking Question: What kind of laws unify the United States?
Answer: Federal Laws
-Hammurabi’s Code covered many areas of law: Community, Family Relations, Business Conduct, Crime
-Many laws based on an eye for an eye
-Applied to rich, poor and men, women differently
Prologue of Hammurabi’s Code: “To bring about the rule of righteousness in the land, destroy the wicked and evil doers; so that the strong should not harm the weak”
-Higher Order Question: What does this say about the government of Babylon?
Answer: Government has a responsibility for what happens in society
Answer: An uninterrupted, consistent operation
-Two centuries after Hammurabi’s reign, the empire fell to the Kassites.
-Mesopotamia was conquered many times throughout history
These materials were prepared by Harms LLC and have neither been developed, reviewed, nor endorsed by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company, publisher of the original WORLD HISTORY: Patterns of Interaction work on which this material is based.
Mr. Harms has designed a number of PowerPoint and Keynote presentations to help students understand history. Designed by a teacher for teachers, this PowerPoint focuses on "City-States In Mesopotamia". This presentation is designed to give students an overview of how and why developed and were conquered many times throughout history. Students will be shown maps, animations and descriptions of some of the major events of Mesopotamian Civilization.
The presentation is totally customizable, allowing you to add your own pictures, graphics and animations to take what we've done even farther. It comes with presentation notes to help you discuss the subject and engage them in the City-States of Mesopotamia. At less than $5.00, it will save you time and lay the foundation for presentations that help students understand and remember.
The Topics include: Mesopotamia, Civilization, Fertile Crescent, Tigris & Euphrates Rivers, City-States, Sumer, Ziggurats, Dynasties, Polytheism, Cultural Diffusion, Cuneiform, Sargon, Babylonian Empire, Hammurabi's Code.
Number of Slides: 48 $4.80
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(The package is a digital download (Zip File) of these three items.
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