Lesson: Review of Ancient
Open lesson by sharing all
or part of the following: People, in ancient
civilizations, were very creative. Bathing in nearby streams and rivers
was a cooling and enjoyable activity. What else did the ancients invent to
stay cool? (The following information on ancient cooling is from an
article written by Gilly at Ancient/Classical
History. This information is used with her permission.)
There were ice houses in the Near East as early as 1700 BC! Some
ancient Babylonians splashed water on the walls and floors. As it
evaporated, it cooled their homes. Sunshades were also popular.
ancient Egyptians made their own ice. Women placed shallow clay trays of
water on straw beds. Evaporation, combined with the drop in night
temperatures, froze the water. Cool night air circulated from the air
shaft built in the middle of their houses. Windows were arranged opposite
doors to allow for a cross draft.
Greece: Alexander the Great built the first Greek ice house. Even
normal Greeks and Roman bought snow and ice, at snow shops, that was
imported on donkey trains! Wealthy Greeks washed up and cooled down in
showers with piped in water emerging from an artistic structure shaped
like an animal's mouth.
Rome: Deep pits were filled with snow and covered with straw. Water
melted and ran through forming a bottom layer of ice which was sold at
expensive prices. Women carried parasols which were made of light cloth
stretched over a wooden frame.
China: Chou emperors had ice houses! Hu the Tiger (Age of Division)
had a bathhouse, air-conditioned with a creative system of running water.
Fans and sunshades helped to cool the common people.
Job (student's job): Review the gifts the world has
received from each civilization below. Choose one civilization. Brainstorm
within your group what the world would be like today if this civilization
had never invented these things, and no one else had either! Be prepared
to share three examples of world change, and how that change might affect
Ancient Mesopotamia: the wheel, the
sailboat, the first written laws, Hammurabi's Code
Ancient Egypt: a number system based on 10,
a 365 day calendar, use of textiles to make clothing (linen, wool,
Ancient Greece: trial by jury, democracy, the
Ancient Rome concrete, paved roads, the milestone
Ancient China: the compass, paper, gunpowder.