Earliest Civilisations: The Indus Valley
Farming

Discover the daily tasks of the Indus Valley farmers, the crops that were grown and the animals that were raised. Act out activities that they might have undertaken. Look at the evidence we have for Indus Valley farming.

Session 1 Farmers

Objectives

History

  • Know and understand significant aspects of the history of the wider world: the nature of ancient civilisations and characteristic features of past non-European societies.
  • Understand historical concepts such as continuity and change.
  • Gain historical perspective by placing their growing knowledge into different contexts, understanding the connections between economic and social history.

English

  • Use spoken language to develop understanding through imagining and exploring ideas.
  • Participate in discussion and role play.

Teaching and Activities

Discover the daily tasks of Indus Valley farmers, the crops that were grown and the animals that were raised; act out activities that Indus Valley farmers might undertake.

Teaching Outcomes:

  • To describe the life of farmers during the Indus Valley civilisation. List the crops that were grown and the animals that were raised.
  • To discuss the daily tasks of Indus Valley farmers. Act out activities that Indus Valley farmers might undertake.

Children will:

  • Describe the activities carried out by Indus Valley farmers.
  • List the crops grown and livestock raised.
  • Use role play to investigate the daily lives of Indus Valley farmers.

You Will Need

  • Compost
  • Seeds
  • Pots (the children can plant these at the start of the session and take them home to look after)

Session 2 Buffalo, bullock and oxen carts

Objectives

History

  • Know and understand significant aspects of the history of the wider world: the nature of ancient civilisations and characteristic features of past non-European societies.
  • Gain historical perspective by placing their growing knowledge into different contexts.

Design and Technology

  • Generate, develop and communicate their ideas through discussion and annotated sketches.
  • Select from and use a range of tools and equipment.
  • Select from and use a range of materials and components.
  • Apply their knowledge of how to strengthen and reinforce complex structures.

Teaching and Activities

Design and make a wooden cart in the Indus Valley civilisation style; make storage pots and animals to complete the cart.

Teaching Outcomes:

  • To describe the wooden carts used during the Indus Valley civilisation.
  • To design and make a wooden cart in the Indus valley civilisation style and make storage pots and animals to complete the cart.

Children will:

  • Describe the carts used by the Indus Valley people.
  • Make a wooden cart in the Indus Valley style.

You Will Need

  • Materials for making wheeled-carts, including wood of various shapes and sizes, e.g. dowelling, square section strips, off-cuts, matchsticks, lolly sticks, card
  • Glue (and/or glue gun with adult help)
  • Wheels (wooden preferably, though two card wheels could be glued together with small pieces of wood to hold them apart to create thickness)
  • Hacksaws
  • Scissors
  • Plasticine/air-dried clay to create storage pots for cart and model animals
  • Steel rulers
  • Pencils

Weblinks

There are no weblinks needed for this session.

Session 3 Evidence

Objectives

History

  • Know and understand significant aspects of the history of the wider world: the nature of ancient civilisations and characteristic features of past non-European societies.
  • Understand the methods of historical enquiry.

Science

  • Compare and group everyday materials on the basis of their properties (perishable or not).
  • Plan different types of scientific enquiries to answer questions; Record results using tables; Draw conclusions.

Teaching and Activities

Find out about the importance of ‘rubbish’ to archaeologists; investigate some ‘rubbish’ thrown away by a family today.

Teaching Outcomes:

  • To understand that different materials degrade over different lengths of time when buried, and discuss the importance of ‘rubbish’ to archaeologists.
  • To set up and report on an enquiry on the perishability of different materials.

Children will:

  • Explain that some materials in the Indus Valley have not survived being buried for thousands of years.
  • Understand that ancient rubbish tips can be good sources of information for archaeologists.
  • Set up and carry out an enquiry to find out how quickly different materials perish.

Provided Resources

This session does not need any provided resources.

You Will Need

  • Black bin liner with some selected clean ‘rubbish’ from your home, e.g. food packaging, bus/train ticket, lengths of wool, an old cotton T-shirt, newspaper, chipped mug, photos no longer required, old mobile phone, light bulb (care needs to be taken!), plastic comb, broken toy, jigsaw puzzle with a missing piece, plastic drinks bottle, key, plastic shopping bag, an old paperback, toy car, etc.
  • Garden soil or compost, sand, water, containers
  • Clay objects, both fired and unfired if possible
  • Bake some wheat and barley grains, chickpeas and lentils in a low oven for 12 hours to represent carbonisation
  • Seeds, pieces of wood, leaves, vegetables, paper, cardboard, fabrics, clean food packaging, small unwanted toys, newspaper, paper written on with different media, plastic items, drink cans, broken ceramics
  • Disposable gloves for handling soil/sand