Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Mesopotamia Map and Cuneiform

We graded our Mesopotamia maps today.  I'm sure you turned that in, but if you didn't - turn it in.  Seriously, it's pretty easy and worth quite a few points.

After we graded the map, we talked about The Epic of Gilgamesh.  (For all of you adults reading this, may I recommend the Stephen Mitchell translation?  It's very good.  I won't recommend it to my students though, as the temple prophetesses are a little... school inappropriate.)

As you're probably aware The Epic of Gilgamesh is among the oldest pieces of literature in the world.  It comes to us from ancient Mesopotamia, and was written in the language: ____________________.  (If you weren't aware of this, students tell the adult what language it was written in.  Go ahead, do that now... I'll probably mention it below.)

We didn't read any of the story.  I did give a little synopsis.  Instead, I gave my students a little tub of play dough, and a stylus.  We practiced writing the language cuneiform for a couple minutes.  I thought it went pretty well.

I snapped a couple pictures.  Have a look, and then you can discuss the blog for extra credit:

Students, if you want extra credit for reading and discussing the blog tonight, you should have read it with an adult.  After you read it with that adult you should have discussed it.  I don't know what all you discussed... maybe something from the Epic of Gilgamesh - throwing the bull's leg at Ishtar, or the flood, or... whatever.  Maybe you tell how you did on your Mesopotamia map.  Maybe you discuss what writing cuneiform was like, or what you're supposed to say every time I say cuneiform...  Whatever... discuss something.  Let your parents (or whoever your reading/discussing this with) know that you're learning something in social studies.

Then, write the following phrase on a scrap piece of paper: "Utnapishtim and a snake that sssteals life."  Have the adult you read and discussed the blog with sign the paper, then turn it in tomorrow for extra credit.


  1. *waves* So now I have some TMBG running through my head: "We're the Me-so-po-taaaa-MEEEE-inz!"

    Hope things are going well for you. :D

  2. So far, so good. We watched it in class. Now pretty much every day there are students who ask me if they can watch it again.