ANCIENT HISTORY
TEACHING STRATEGIES

Using a case study approach

There are more than two dozen "mini cases" embedded in the various sections of each of the chapters of Ancient History, and each mini-case can function in a case study format. The mini-cases, the big ideas to be explored, and higher-order, discussion questions are identified below. If you are interested in using a case study approach, select a mini-case from the following options, and proceed by having students view the section of the chapter that addresses the issue that you wish examined. After the students have viewed the selected section, use the discussion questions to promote inquiry about the big ideas.

The following big ideas, integral to sections of Ancient History are suggested for case study topics:

Case Topics

Chapter 1: Ancient Egypt

Vanity
Vanity is not a modern phenomenon. It was a strong influence on behavior as long ago as Ancient Egypt.

Government
People living in large groups require rules and laws to govern their behavior.

Monuments to power
Some all-powerful leaders demand great monuments to honor and immortalize them.

Social Classes
There was a great divide between the rich people who lived in the palace of the Pharaoh, and the peasants, farmers and artisans.

Growing Food
Food was plentiful and came largely from the bounty of the land. Living in the fertile Nile River valley made the growing of a great variety of food possible.

Childhood
The concept of a protected childhood is a modern concept. Children in Ancient Egypt were cared for and protected only until the age when they were able to join the workforce.

Written language
The ability to read and write made an enormous difference to a society. A written alphabet, the basis of reading and writing, and a system of numbers, allowed civilizations to take major steps forward.

Recreation
People in early societies, like the Ancient Egyptians, loved a good time.
The ability to use wind, as a means of powering a ship, was an innovative technological advance. This was the beginning of sea travel.

Wind – a source of power for water travel
The ability to use wind as a means of powering a ship was an innovative technological advance. This was the beginning of sea travel.

Fear of the unknown
People throughout history have had a deep fear of the unknown and of life's uncertainties. They have devised various ways of dealing with those fears.

Making war
People throughout history have made war in order to increase their status, their power, their possessions. War seems to satisfy some inner human need.

Comparative societies
Other societies were developing at the same time as Ancient Egypt. These had similarities to, and major differences from the Egyptians, depending on a variety of social, economic, cultural, and geographic factors

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