Benin c. CE 900 - 1300

Block A - Introduction to Benin

This topic provides you with an outstanding set of inspired plans and resources to enable you to study Benin (West Africa) c. AD 900-1300 and to contrast many of its features with contemporary developments in British history; learn about the rise and establishment of the Benin Kingdom, consider what brought the Edo people to the rainforests of Benin and how the empire grew; study the rulers of the Edo people, their everyday life, their religion and worship, their trading currencies and trade routes, their music and art and finally how the Kingdom of Benin came to an end.

This block puts the development of the Kingdom of Benin into context within a West African setting, and contrasts it with contemporary developments in Europe. Compare the history of art in both areas and the effect that the art of Benin has had on the western world.

This Topic is written for Upper Key Stage 2. If you want to use this Topic for a different Key Stage, you will need to consider how to adapt the outcomes, content, delivery methods, resources and differentiation, as well as the relevant National Curriculum objectives.

Supporting documents for topic
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01: Timelines

Do some research to find out about the contemporary developments in European and West African history and create a timeline to compare the two regions.

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02: West Africa

Find out about other civilisations in West Africa and when and where they developed. Use this knowledge to create an overlay map/animation showing the change over time.

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03: History of art

Learn about the history of art in Europe and West Africa, and how the appearance of looted Benin art in Europe and America influenced western artists. Make a self-portrait in the style of one of the artists.