This unit covers ancient Indian from the Aryans through multiple empires. It includes the rise of Hinduism and Buddhism.
Ancient India unit contains 6 learning experiences.
Learning Experiences (Lessons) in Ancient India Each learning experience takes about 45 minutes to teach in the device-enabled classroom.
Ancient India: Geography and Environment
Students use maps, video, and text to familiarize themselves with the geography of India, including physical features such as the Himalayas and climate features such as the monsoon. They conclude by creating an infographic showing what they have learned.
Early Civilization and the Aryans
Students explore the facts and the effect of the Aryan migration to India in ancient times. Then, they learn about the caste system, which was built upon Aryan social class structure. Finally, they write imaginatively describing their images of Aryan life.
India’s First Empires
Students first learn about the Mauryan Empire and its greatest ruler, Ashoka. Then, they turn to the later Gupta Empire, the source of much of India‚Äôs culture today. Next, they use a Venn diagram to compare and contrast the two empires. Finally, they write about which empire they would rather rule, and why.
Religion and Its Influence: Hinduism
Students explore the basic concepts and practices of Hinduism. Then, they research Hindu beliefs and practices and explain their influence on Indian society and culture. Finally, they watch two short videos on modern Hinduism and prepare a news report on the annual holiday Diwali, the festival of lights.
Religion and Its Influence: Buddhism
Students learn the life story of Buddha and how he came upon the Four Noble Truths concerning the universality of suffering and the Middle Way. Then they follow the spread of Buddhism in India through the conversion of Emperor Ashoka and his campaign of sending missionaries through the land. Next, they explain the cultural influence of Buddhism in India. Finally, they elaborate upon its expansion through Asia and the West.
Ancient Indian Achievements and Contributions
Students find out about many of the original and lasting contributions that ancient India made to the worlds of knowledge and culture. They work in small groups to research and report on specific contributions. Then, as a class, they focus on India‚Äôs linguistic contribution: Sanskrit, the classical language of the Hindu sacred texts. In the process, they read a transliteration of a Sanskrit verse from the Rig Veda and analyze a translation of it. Finally, they use their research into ancient India as a starting point for thinking about and discussing aspects of the study of history.