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Pyramids in Paint

Explore the pyramids of ancient Egypt! Travel back in time to recreate scale drawings of the Great Pyramid.

  • Grade 4
    Grade 5
    Grade 6
  • Multiple Lesson Periods
  • Directions

    1. Most pyramids of ancient Egypt were built during the Old Kingdom from about 2664 to 2184 BCE. The pyramids were burial tombs for ancient Egyptian pharaohs, queens, and nobles. Many treasures were buried with Egyptian nobility because they believed these items would be needed in the afterlife. Hidden chambers, passageways, doors, and dead ends inside were designed to foil robbers. Organize students into small groups in preparation for investigation the history of these marvelous structures. Prepare a variety of text and electronic resources for students to use during this study. Ask students to generate a list of questions they would like to focus on during this research.
    2. Once research is complete, groups will organize their findings into a presentation format of choice to share with classmates. Each group will also create visual for their presentation.
    3. Using Crayola® Colored Pencils, students draw the Great Pyramid to scale on a piece of white paper. To draw something to scale you must make a smaller unit of measurement represent a larger unit of measurement.
    4. Find out about the inside of the Great Pyramid. Draw the inside view to scale as well.
    5. Assist students as needed with locating an area of asphalt large enough to draw another, larger-scale drawing of the Great Pyramid, both inside and outside if there is space. Crayola Washable Sidewalk Paint will wash off with a garden hose or rain, but test a small area to make sure the paint does not stain the surface. Use the paint on areas that are at least 6 months old.
    6. Student groups measure and plan their scale drawing(s) of the Great Pyramid to fit in the outdoor space. Use the Crayola So Big Brush and paint roller in the kit to paint a scale drawing.
    7. Paints wash from skin with soap and water. Normal laundering procedures remove stains from most cotton, polyester, acrylic fabrics, and their blends. For best results, wash immediately in hot water. Do not use pre-wash products as they may set stains. Severe staining may require repeat laundering or all-fabric bleach.
    8. Students present to small groups of classmates encircling their scale model of the Great Pyramid. Groups rotate until everyone has experienced the presentations.
    9. Students remove the paint within 2 weeks. Wash surface with the water pressure from a garden hose. Light brushing with a broom or nylon brush may be necessary to remove some paint.
  • Standards

    LA: Read and comprehend informational texts, including history/social studies, science, and technical texts, at the high end of the grade level text complexity band independently and proficiently.

    LA: Integrate information from several texts on the same topic in order to write or speak about the subject knowledgeably.

    LA: Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions with diverse partners on grade level topics and texts, building on others' ideas and expressing their own clearly.

    LA: Write informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas, concepts, and information through the selection, organization, and analysis of relevant content.

    MATH: Understand the concept of a ratio and use ratio language to describe a ratio relationship between two quantities.

    MATH: Use ratio reasoning to convert measurement units; manipulate and transform units appropriately when multiplying or dividing quantities.

    SS: Explore and describe similarities and differences in the ways groups, societies, and cultures address similar human needs and concerns.

    SS: Identify and use various sources for reconstructing the past, such as documents, letters, diaries, maps, textbooks, photos, and others.

    SS: Give examples of and explain group and institutional influences such as religious beliefs, laws, and peer pressure, on people, events, and elements of culture.

    VA: Intentionally take advantage of the qualities and characteristics of art media, techniques, and processes to enhance communication of experiences and ideas.

    VA: Use subjects, themes, and symbols that demonstrate knowledge of contexts, values, and aesthetics that communicate intended meaning in artworks.

    VA: Describe and place a variety of art objects in historical and cultural contexts.

  • Adaptations

    Possible classroom resources include: If I Were a Kid in Ancient Egypt: Children of the Ancient World by Cobblestone Publishing; National Geographic Kids Everything Ancient Egypt: Dig Into a Treasure Trove of Facts, Photos, and Fun by Crispin Boyer; Ancient Egypt by George Hart

    Students work in teams of two or small groups to research information about the pyramids of ancient Egypt. Investigate the various types of pyramids that were created during ancient times, how they were built, etc.

    Students individually sketch a small-scale drawing of the inside and/or outside of the Great Pyramid. Next, working as a whole class, students create a large scale drawing o the great Pyramid using Crayola Washable Sidewalk Paint using a space on the school's outdoor playground.

    Discover which items and nobles were buried in the Great Pyramid. Why were these treasures chosen? How were they discovered? Have there been any issues with thefts in this pyramid?

    Students work individually or in teams of two to create a cross section of a famous Egyptian pyramid. Label each room and identify items that were found in the rooms. Be prepared to share your cross section with classmates and describe what you have created.


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