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Rock-a-bye Baby:
Mesopotamia, the Cradle of Civilization
Instructional Issue
•Disparity in social studies curriculum
amongst teachers and between middle
•No leadership until 2008 with
curriculum leaders
Data to Support Problem
•Guideline with PA standards, but
inconsistent timelines with topics:
-5 Themes of Geography
-Hebrews & Phoenicians
-Middle Ages
Established Goals: World History – PA Standards
8.1.9 B Analyze and interpret historical sources.
8.1.9 D. Analyze and interpret historical research.
8.4.9 B. Analyze historical documents, material artifacts and
historic sites important to world history before 1500.
8.4.9 C. Analyze how continuity and change throughout history
has impacted belief systems and religions, commerce and
industry, innovations, settlement patterns, social organization,
transportation and roles of women before 1500
Enduring Understandings
1. Geography influences the evolution of a culture.
2. A complex culture, in which there are large numbers of
human beings, share six common elements which
constitutes a civilization: urban focus, distinct
religious structure, political and military structures,
social structure based on economic power,
development of writing, significant forms of artistic
and intellectual activity.
3. Leaders impact a culture and future cultures.
4. Ancient civilizations have affected our present day
Essential Questions:
•How did the geography of the Tigris and Euphrates
Rivers lead to the growth of the first recorded
civilization known as Mesopotamia?
•What caused the development of the writing system
known as cuneiform?
•How does Gilgamesh, the first epic ever written,
reflect the political, social, and cultural climate of
•What universal themes are revealed in Gilgamesh?
•How do religion and government exercise authority
over people?
•What Mesopotamian contributions (in science,
technology, and the arts) can be found in today’s
From Cuneiform
Computers & Collaboration
“Even with the best teachers we have, most middle
and high school kids say they’re bored 50-70 percent
of the time.”
-Students power down and turn off the lights of
education, so . . .
“Give students the opportunity to use technology
in school -like blogs, interactive web pages, or
YouTube - and connect them to the world.”
Professional Development
•Ongoing curriculum meetings to discuss strengths
and weakness
•Technology Training - Paid After-school Workshops
-Discovery Streaming & Safari Montage
-Creating a Classroom Wiki
-Smart Airliner Training
-NetTrekker Training
-Web 2.0 Applications, like Google Earth
Professional Development
Mesopotamia - Assessment
QuickTime™ and a
TIFF (Uncomp resse d) de com press or
are nee ded to s ee this picture.
Professional Development
•Evaluate during team meetings and plan
for future units.