Unit 2 The Dawn of Civilization Section 3 Writing Assignment: Impact of Fertile Crescent Cultures



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Unit 2 - The Dawn of Civilization - Section 3

Writing Assignment: Impact of Fertile Crescent Cultures

Students will compare two of the following Fertile Crescent cultures: Sumer, Babylon, Hittite, Assyrian, Chaldean, or Phoenician, in which they discuss how their cultures affected on another, and how they impact us today.



Sumer 3000 BC

Centered around polytheistic religion; developed written language (cuneiform); writing tablets with reed stylus; specialized occupations; social hierarchy

Babylon 1700 BC

King Hammurabi’s Code of Laws covered aspects of daily life and business; united all of Mesopotamia

Hittite 1600 BC

Horse-drawn chariot with three soldiers; strong military; mastered ironworking; adopted Sumerian cuneiform; laws similar to Code of Hammurabi

Assyrian 1200 BC

Other tribes often invaded Assyria seeking control of their fertile land; developed strong, brutal warrior society; large library built in capital of Nineveh

Chaldean 600 BC

King Nebuchadnezzar II had temples/palaces built to develop Babylon; Ishtar Gate and Hanging Gardens; advances in astronomy, calendar based on phases of moon

Phoenician 1500 BC

Wealthy trading society; developed colonies in Spain, Italy, Egypt, and Greece along trade routes; invented glassblowing; Phoenician alphabet influenced Greeks and others

Grading Rubric

Ideas and Content

In addition to the descriptions in the 6 + 1 Traits of Writing rubric, use the following specific guidelines:


Top Scores

  • The paper compares and contrasts two Fertile Crescent cultures. Solid evidence is articulated in the essay that addresses and supports the ideas of the student’s comparison.

  • Research-based evidence provides clear and convincing support about the Fertile Crescent cultures and their impact on other cultures.

  • In addition to the online content, research includes another source, clearly relating to the topic and supports the student’s ideas as specified in the assignment instructions.

  • Sources consulted are genuine and used to strengthen the student’s ideas on Fertile Crescent cultures.

  • The paper has sufficient length to complete its purpose and the requirements of the assignment (at least 250–300 words).


Middle Scores


  • The paper compares and contrasts two Fertile Crescent cultures, but appears to be unclear or weak in statement while lacking factual support. The comparison statements are vague, and do not directly address the Fertile Crescent’s impact on humankind during this time.

  • Research-based evidence does not strongly support the given topic, The information appears to be more of a collection of facts related to the topic rather than evidence of its focus. It lacks a sufficient amount of information to generate a comparative essay.

  • Research includes the other required source but does not follow the guidelines set forth in the directions. It is difficult to determine if this source strongly supports the ideas as specified in the assignment instructions.

  • Sources consulted lend information specific to the topic but do not completely support the focus of this assignment.

  • The paper is close to the sufficient length to complete its purpose or the assignment requirements are not fully met (200–250 words).


Low Scores


  • The paper does not compare two Fertile Crescent cultures.

  • Research-based evidence is lacking and/or not related to the topic. Solid evidence is not apparent in this paper. The thesis is not supported.

  • Research includes no additional sources as specified in the assignment instructions. The selected source is not related to research-based fact, does not have a clear purpose in support, or lacks reliable research.

  • Sources consulted do not support and/or relate to the Fertile Crescent.

  • The paper does not have sufficient length to meet its purpose or satisfy the assignment requirements (199 or less words).


Organization

In addition to the descriptions in the 6 + 1 Traits of Writing rubric, use the following specific guidelines:


Top Scores

  • The paper has an introduction that includes the comparative thesis statement.

  • The paper is primarily the student’s writing, with evidence blended in effectively in support.

  • Supporting evidence is arranged in paragraphs in a sequence that makes the relation to the thesis clear.

  • Paragraph structure presents supporting evidence in a unified and coherent manner, blending effectively with the student’s writing.

  • Sections are clearly connected, and the development follows a logical pattern.

  • An effective ending brings a sense of closure and resolution.


Middle Scores

  • The introduction does not completely prepare the reader for the content of the essay.

  • Although much of the writing is the student’s, a high percentage of the content is taken directly from sources.

  • Supporting evidence is not as clearly organized in support of a thesis. It may be organized instead by listing facts from one source followed by facts from another source.

  • Evidence is quoted without blending effectively with the student’s writing.

  • The sequence of ideas in the paper does not follow a logical pattern.

  • A conclusion is attempted, but it does not effectively wrap up ideas or bring the paper to an effective close.


Low Scores

  • The introduction is absent or does not introduce a comparative thesis.

  • If the paper has an adequate number of sources, it may be more of a collection of quotations than an essay written by the student.

  • There is no clear sequence of the presentation of evidence.

  • The conclusion of the paper does not effectively wrap up ideas or bring the paper to an effective close.

  • The conclusion is absent.


Other Areas of Grading

Please consult the 6 + 1 Traits of Writing rubric for the following areas of evaluation:


Voice

Word Choice

Sentence Fluency

Conventions

Presentation

Unit 3 – The Growth of Civilizations - Section 5

Writing Assignment: Presenting an Ancient Civilization

Sample Answer
Students prepare a PowerPoint presentation about one ancient civilization. The presentation should contain at least seven slides, including the title slide and reference slides.

Civilization

Key Figures

Government

Religious Beliefs

Cultural/ Scientific Achievements

Ancient Greek: Alexander the Great’s Empire (Unit 3 Section 2)

  • King Philip


  • Alexander

  • Modeled after Persian absolutism

  • Mythology


  • Polytheistic

  • Literature: Homer’s epic poems, love stories, comedies, tragedies, open air theaters

  • Art and Architecture: Greek orders, idealism, red and black painted pottery

  • Philosophy: Socrates, Plato, Aristotle

  • Science and Math: Euclid/geometry, Archimedes/irrigation screw

Ancient Roman: Julio-Claudian Empire (Unit 3 Section 3)

  • Emperors


  • Augustus



  • Caesar


  • Tiberius


  • Caligula


  • Claudius


  • Nero

  • Imperial rule

  • Polytheism


  • Christianity

  • Pax Romana


  • Art and Architecture: Colosseum, Forum and Markets of Trajan, The Pantheon, adopted many Greek techniques

Ancient America: Maya (Unit 3 Section 4)

  • Rule by kings


  • Based on religion



  • Polytheism


  • Bloodletting rituals and trances

  • Slash-and-burn


  • Trade


  • Canals


  • Math system based on 20



Ancient China: Han Dynasty (Unit 3 Section 5)

  • Liu Bang


  • Emperor Wudi



  • Legalist government


  • Civil service system

  • Confucianism



  • Iron plow, wheelbarrow


  • Jade carvings


  • Buddhist artworks


  • Poetry


  • Silk, paper


  • Seismograph


  • Acupuncture


  • Sundial, compass

Ancient Indian: Gupta Empire (Unit 3 Section 5)

  • Chandra Gupta I


  • Samudra Gupta



  • Chandra Gupta II


  • Kalidasa

  • Hinduism

  • Poetry and plays


  • Surgical techniques


  • Repair broken bones


  • Place value system


  • Trade


  • Hindu temples and artworks



  • Arranged marriages


Grading Rubric
Ideas and Content

In addition to the descriptions in the 6 + 1 Traits of Writing rubric, use the following specific guidelines:


Top Scores

  • The presentation focuses on one of the aforementioned civilizations: Greek, Roman, Mesoamerican, Chinese, or Indian.

  • Research-based evidence provides clear and convincing support for the student’s selected civilization.

  • Research includes at least two different sources, not including the online content.

  • Sources consulted are balanced and are used to discuss the required elements of the presentation.

  • The presentation includes the student’s original thoughts based upon what was learned from research.

  • The presentation has sufficient length to complete its purpose and the requirements of the assignment (seven slides, including title and reference slides).


Middle Scores

  • The presentation focuses on one of the aforementioned civilizations: Greek, Roman, Mesoamerican, Chinese, or Indian, but does not focus on the specific time period as mentioned in the directions.

  • Research-based evidence is related to the topic, but it does not always clearly support the topic; it may be more of a collection of facts related to the topic. It may be related but insufficient in amount to fully support the thesis.

  • Research includes at least one other source, not including the online content.

  • Sources consulted do not relate to selected civilization.

  • The presentation includes limited analysis based on what was learned from the research.

  • The presentation may not have sufficient length to complete its purpose or to meet the assignment requirements (seven slides, including title and reference slides).


Low Scores

  • A specific civilization is not clearly identified or the presentation seems to shift its focus.

  • Research-based evidence is not related to the topic. Evidence is insufficient in amount to fully enable completion of the assignment.

  • Research is not conducted outside of the online content, or research based facts do not have a clear purpose in support.

  • No outside sources consulted.

  • The presentation is largely quoted or paraphrased from a source.

  • The presentation does not have sufficient length to meet its purpose or satisfy the assignment requirements (seven slides, including title and reference slides).


Organization

In addition to the descriptions in the 6 + 1 Traits of Writing rubric, use the following specific guidelines:



Top Scores

  • The presentation is organized as indicated in the directions.

  • The presentation is primarily the student’s writing, with evidence blended in effectively in support.

  • Supporting evidence is arranged in an orderly fashion.

  • Paragraph structure presents supporting evidence in a unified and coherent manner, blending effectively with the student’s writing.

  • Sections are clearly connected, and the slide show follows a logical pattern.

  • References are written in MLA format.


Middle Scores

  • The presentation lacks organization per the directions, but all information is present.

  • Although much of the writing is the student’s, a high percentage of the content is taken directly from sources.

  • Supporting evidence is not clearly organized.

  • Evidence is quoted without blending effectively with the student’s writing.

  • The sequence of ideas in the paper does not follow a logical pattern.

  • References are included, but not in MLA format.


Low Scores

  • The presentation is missing topics and not organized per directions.

  • If the paper has an adequate number of sources, it may be more of a collection of quotations than an essay written by the student.

  • There is no clear sequence of the presentation of evidence.

  • References are not listed.


Other Areas of Grading

Please consult the 6 + 1 Traits of Writing rubric for the following areas of evaluation:


Voice

Word Choice

Sentence Fluency

Conventions

Presentation

Unit 4 – Medieval Civilizations - Section 5

Writing Assignment: Peasant Life

Sample Answer

Making reference to the illustrations in the Book of Hours, students should write one journal entry (350–400 words in length), addressing the following information about peasant life. Peasants lived in one to two bedroom cottages that had floors made from packed dirt. During the day, men and women both went to the field to work. Sometimes women and girls stayed home to cook, sew, care for animals, and grow vegetables. Trials and tribulations included: fire because of no chimneys, bugs and lice in the beds, having to work for the lord (serfs), serfdom was inherited. Serfs were not allowed to leave the manor without permission. They were responsible for feeding those who lived on the manor; remaining food was for their consumption (which often wasn’t much).

Grading Rubric

Ideas and Content

In addition to the descriptions in the 6 + 1 Traits of Writing rubric, use the following specific guidelines:


Top Scores

  • The journal entry is focused on the daily life of a peasant who lived in the early Middle Ages. The overlying themes of daily life, duties, and obligations are clearly discussed. Comparison statements that address the trials and tribulations of this time period are included in the paper.

  • Research-based evidence provides clear and convincing support for describing everyday life in the early Middle Ages.

  • Research includes reference to the Book of Hours.

  • The journal entry has sufficient length to complete its purpose and the requirements of the assignment (350–400 words).


Middle Scores

  • The journal entry covers the general routine of a person who lived in the early Middle Ages, but does not include specific information about specific themes as instructed.

  • Research-based evidence is related to the topic, but it does not always clearly support the topic. There may be gaps in the information provided as support for this assignment.

  • Research includes minimal reference to the Book of Hours.

  • The paper may not have sufficient length to complete its purpose or to meet the assignment requirements (300–350 words).


Low Scores

  • The journal entry does not address any of the requirements for this assignment. There is no central focus for the assignment.

  • Research-based evidence is not related to the topic. Evidence is insufficient in amount to fully support the thesis.

  • No reference is made to the Book of Hours.

  • The paper does not have sufficient length to meet its purpose or satisfy the assignment requirements (less than 299 words).


Organization

In addition to the descriptions in the 6 + 1 Traits of Writing rubric, use the following specific guidelines:


Top Scores

  • The paper has an introduction that includes the thesis statement.

  • The paper is primarily the student’s writing, with evidence blended in effectively in support.

  • Supporting evidence is arranged in paragraphs in a sequence that makes the relation to the thesis clear.

  • Paragraph structure presents supporting evidence in a unified and coherent manner, blending effectively with the student’s writing.

  • Sections are clearly connected, and the development follows a logical pattern.

  • An effective ending brings a sense of closure and resolution.


Middle Scores

  • The introduction does not completely prepare the reader for the content of the essay.

  • Although much of the writing is the student’s, a high percentage of the content is taken directly from sources.

  • Supporting evidence is not as clearly organized in support of a thesis. It may be organized instead by listing facts from one source followed by facts from another source.

  • Evidence is quoted without blending effectively with the student’s writing.

  • The sequence of ideas in the paper does not follow a logical pattern.

  • A conclusion is attempted, but it does not effectively wrap up ideas or bring the paper to an effective close.


Low Scores

  • The introduction is absent or does not introduce a thesis.

  • If the paper has an adequate number of sources, it may be more of a collection of quotations than an essay written by the student.

  • There is no clear sequence of the presentation of evidence.

  • The conclusion of the paper does not effectively wrap up ideas or bring the paper to an effective close.

  • The conclusion is absent.


Other Areas of Grading

Please consult the 6 + 1 Traits of Writing rubric for the following areas of evaluation:


Voice

Word Choice

Sentence Fluency

Conventions

Presentation





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