Learning about Indus Valley Civilization

For many people, the term “early civilizations” is thought to be about those who lived in Egypt and Mesopotamia and their construction of the pyramids and burying mummies in golden tombs. But, there is more to early civilizations than pyramids and golden tombs. About 5000 years ago in the Indus River floodplain, an important civilization was developed, known as the Indus Valley Civilization. The discovery of this early civilization in South Asia proved that Mesopotamia and Egypt weren’t the only early civilizations.

How the Indus Valley Civilization Lived

The Indus Valley Civilization contained more than 1000 cities and settlements, all of which were well-organized and built from brick and stone. The drainage systems, water storage systems and water wells were the most sophisticated in this ancient world. The Indus Valley Civilization also developed beneficial systems for weight and trade. The people of the Indus Valley Civilization made games pieces and toys for their children as well as jewelry for personal use and income. They also developed a writing system that was used for several hundreds of years; unfortunately, unlike many other ancient civilizations, their words can’t be deciphered, so we can’t read what they wrote.

What the Indus Valley Civilization Did Not Concern Themselves With

Unlike the Egyptians and Mesopotamians, the Indus Valley Civilization did not build large monuments nor did they bury gold and riches with the dead in golden tombs. The Indus Valley Civilization didn’t have emperors or mummies and there were no bloody battles in their territory. Instead, while other civilizations were devoting their resources and their time the supernatural and the rich, the inhabitants of the Indus Valley were focused on taking a practical approach to the comfort and well-being of the living people. There were citadels and large walls, but there is no evidence of palaces, temples or monuments.

Learning about the Indus Valley Civilizations is a great way to demonstrate to students that not all ancient civilizations consisted of the same behaviors, housing styles and beliefs. One of the easiest ways to encourage learning about Indus Valley Civilizations is with the use of flip cards and online study guides, both of which will help students recognize certain features of this civilization as well as memorize dates, locations and interesting information about the civilizations of the Indus Valley.

Individual sets are available in both English and Spanish on Teachers Pay Teachers. Click on the following link.


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