Great resources, Ruth. I love the idea of Warrior Excavation Kits. Have you ever done used them in the classroom?
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In 2005 I posted a unit about the Chinese New Year.. Since then I've developed more history/geography lessons including Terra Cotta Warriors of Xi'an.
- The Emperor's Silent Army by Jane O'Connor
There is currently a temporary exhibit of Terra Cotta Warriors at the National Geographic Museum, Washington, DC, which runs through March 31, 2010.
Here is a link to PDF Teacher's Guide with beautiful color photographs.
Here are Warrior Excavation Kits available for $6 each at Pearl River. There are four different warriors available so excavation could be a small group activity. Figures are general, feudal officer, infantry soldier, and kneeling archer.
Here are two video clips about the Terra Cotta Warriors
This clip shows excavation site in China. Chinese music in background.
This clip is from National Geographic with close-ups of warriors. Voiceover of history, explanation of why, how, and when warriors were made.
- Increase students' understanding of Chinese history
- Encourage hands-on exploration using excavation kits
- Promote thinking about archaeology and archaeologist's role
There are many ways you might structure lessons.
1. Show students photos first and ask why the army was made.
2. Start with the excavation kits and once the figures are excavated ask students what they have uncovered.
3.After showing video clips, fill in KWL chart. Read book. Keep adding to chart.
4. Read book first, show video clips.
You could use all or part of the materials listed in Materials section above. Depending on student interest and age, this lesson could last from one day to one week.
Compare and contrast the Xi'an site to other archaeological sites, like King Tut's tomb.
Visit museum with archaeological exhibits, like Museum of Natural History. There may be classroom kits for rent or you may be able to arrange a field trip.
Visit archaeological site in your area, for example, Native American burial site.
Contact departments of archaeology at area colleges and universities. Set up classroom visit.
Informal assessments and teacher's self-reflection could be used to assess lesson.
Ask questions throughout. Record questions on K-W-L Chart.
Use K-W-L Chart to record what was learned. Much of this information will be new to students, so Learned column will have many facts.
Look for level of student engagement, especially during hands-on excavation. Circulate to answer questions and help students stay on task.
At the end of the lesson teacher could ask her/himself:
How did this lesson go?
What parts of this lesson will I keep for next year?
What will I change or add to make this lesson more effective, reach more students?