Ancient Civilization Research Project Due Date: Name

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Ancient Civilization Research Project Due Date:________

Name: ____________________c:\users\ed07977\appdata\local\microsoft\windows\temporary internet files\content.ie5\71lefezk\setting_sun_by_wolfepaw[1].jpg

Date: ____________ Pd. ____

You are a historian working in the Jeffersonian Museum in Washington D.C. You are working on a project featuring one of the ancient civilizations: Maya, Aztec, and Inca. You need to research the ancient civilization assigned to you. How can we preserve ancient civilizations?

To help focus your research you need to answer the following focus questions:

  • What are the key elements (i.e. culture, government, language, religion, technology) of civilizations?

  • What are the physical, social, cultural, and political characteristics of ancient pre-Colombian Mesoamerican civilizations?

  • How do the climate and the physical geography of Mesoamerica impact the human activity and living conditions of the people that live there?

  • How do we measure the effect of ancient civilizations on modern civilization?

  • How does technology influence the human capacity to modify the physical environment?

Part 1: Research and presentation

Research an Ancient civilization assigned to your class and create a presentation using one of the tools listed below. Your presentation will teach other students in the classroom about the civilization you are researching.


This online tool will allow you to put in images/text onto slides and then have people each add their comments. They record their comments and upload them.


This online tool is for advanced users, students who are already familiar with PowerPoint and other presentation programs. Mrs. Day will give a tutorial for students who use this online tool.

    1. Google Slides

This online tool will allow you to use basic presentation slides. Students working in groups will be able to have access to this anywhere. Teachers will also be able to access this document as you work on the presentation.

Be prepared to use your presentation to teach another class about your civilization.

Name: ____________________c:\users\ed07977\appdata\local\microsoft\windows\temporary internet files\content.ie5\71lefezk\setting_sun_by_wolfepaw[1].jpg

Date: ____________ Pd. ____

Part 2: Persuasive letter

Write a persuasive letter to me using Google documents.

Now that your research and presentations are completed, it is time to focus on creating an

AZ class book with the information learned so far. Everyone in the class is required to create one page in the class book that focuses on one letter of the alphabet. The page you create will have a narration about the letter you are assigned as well as artwork that relates to the narration. In addition, each student will be assigned to a group to assist in the publishing process.

Each student is required to choose 3 different letters that they would prefer to create a page about and a word that corresponds to that letter and the Mesoamerican civilization researched by the class (A is for Aardvark, B is for Balloon, etc). In addition, you must also choose which publishing job you would like to do (editorial, copyeditor, fact checker, promotions, publicity, sales, or artist). Then, you will write a persuasive letter to the teacher, who will have the final decision on letter assignment. Try to have at least one of your letters be an uncommon letter. If everyone chooses the same common letters then only a few students will get one of their choices. Z, Q, and X are the hardest letters to find words that begin with them, so feel free to be creative with these letters if you choose them. If you have any questions about words that may or may not be appropriate for a particular letter, then ask the teacher for advice.
The persuasive letter must be in business letter format. An example will be provided for you to follow. Make sure the spacing is the same as the sample letter.
Persuasive Letter Format Checklist

_____ Your address

_____ Today’s date

_____ Name and address of person you are sending the letter to

_____ Salutation (Dear Ms. Demmert:)

_____ Introductory Paragraph explains why you are writing the letter and your goal or thesis statement (what letters and publishing job you chose and a sentence or two explaining why you chose them).

_____ Reasons supporting your goal/thesis statement. Use one paragraph that explains what letters you are interested in doing for your page. Include the word you want to use with each letter (A is for Aardvark for example) and any interesting information you would include on your page. Use a second paragraph to explain why you picked your particular publishing job and what skills you have that would be helpful in completing that job. Each paragraph should be 46 sentences long, so keep your reasoning short and concise.

_____ Conclusion summarizing which letters you chose and why you want to create a page on them and what publishing job you would like to do. There should be a total of 4 paragraphs in letter (Introductory paragraph, 2 Supporting paragraphs, and a concluding paragraph).

_____Closing (Sincerely, Thank you, etc.) followed by four blank lines then your full name.
Sample Letter Format

123 Winner's Road

New Employee Town, PA 12345
March 16, 2001
Ernie English

1234 Writing Lab Lane

Write City, IN 12345
Dear Mr. English:

The first paragraph of a typical business letter is used to state the main point of the letter.

Begin with a friendly opening; then quickly transition into the purpose of your letter. Use a couple of sentences to explain the purpose, but do not go in to detail until the next paragraph.
Beginning with the second paragraph, state the supporting details to justify your purpose.

These may take the form of background information, statistics or firsthand accounts. A few short paragraphs within the body of the letter should be enough to support your reasoning.

Finally, in the closing paragraph, briefly restate your purpose and why it is important. If the purpose of your letter is employment related, consider ending your letter with your contact information. However, if the purpose is informational, think about closing with gratitude for the reader's time.

Lucy Letter

Source Purdue OWL

Name: ____________________c:\users\ed07977\appdata\local\microsoft\windows\temporary internet files\content.ie5\71lefezk\setting_sun_by_wolfepaw[1].jpg

Date: ____________ Pd. ____

Part 3: A-Z Ancient Civilization Book

Your Task:

Create a book explaining 24-26 terms, people, places or ideas from your given civilization. Each page will consist of a single word starting with a letter from the alphabet, a graphic, and a short explanation of the term. Remember the A-Z books we viewed and the art instruction provided.


1. Take a piece of white paper copy paper.

a. Beginning with your letter; choose a term from the unit that begins with that letter. Example: If the page is ‘J’ and this was the unit on Asia you might choose “Japan”. Suggestion: for difficult letters like Q or Z, look at the hieroglyphs or names in the mythological stories

b. Write the term in big, letters on the top or bottom of the page. Consider the layout of the pages before and after your letter.

c. Write at least 3-4 sentences explaining what the term means. Type your text and submit it to your editor for review. Make corrections and revisions as needed and submit text again.
d. Draw and color a picture to go along with your term. This could be a map, chart or your own drawing; be sure the picture and text complement each other. Make a sketch of your idea on the page. Review your sketch with the artist assigned to your group. Listen to his/her feedback and make necessary changes. On a new piece of paper, draw your illustration again and submit your text and artwork to the editor/artist. Make any changes necessary to complete your page.


Japan is an island country. It is isolated because it is surrounded by water. Legends say water drops from a spear created it..

Buddhism came to Japan from China through Korea. Japan traded with Korea regularly. The Mongols conquered Korea and tried to attack Japan from there.

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