Earliest Civilisations: Shang Dynasty

Block C - Writing and the Shang Calendar

Study this fascinating topic and learn all about The Shang Dynasty of Ancient China. Discover key information about the formation of the Shang Dynasty and the kings who ruled it. Learn all about everyday life, the music, cities and settlements, and the process of worship in this early civilisation. The importance of warfare, advanced technology, and the development of writing are all studied and children will have the chance to meet a number of exciting creative outcomes!

If you love problem solving, brain teasers and languages you will love this block about the writing and calendar of the Shang Dynasty. Learn how Chinese writing works and investigate Shang texts and calendars as you build towards a presentation.

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: Chinese characters

Learn how Chinese writing works; write your name in Chinese; say your name in Mandarin Chinese.

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02: Shang writing

Address research questions about writing and oracle bones in the past; research some Shang characters found on oracle bones; work out the meaning of Shang characters.

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03: Shang calendar

Learn how and why people in the Shang Dynasty made calendars; make your own Shang cyclical calendar.

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04: Translating an inscription

Translate a Shang text and explain what the oracle bones tell us about the Shang Dynasty.

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05: Make your own oracle bones

Make replica oracle bones from wood, plastic or bone; inscribe with your own Shang inscription; make a display of all your Shang writing creations.