Essential Question: How did geographic challenges lead to the ...

Essential Question: How did geographic challenges lead to the ...

Todays Essential Question: How did geographic challenges lead to the rise of city-states in Mesopotamia? Warm Up: Make a CONNECTION Think about a time you experienced a problem or challenge.

What did you do to solve it? Write one sentence explaining the problem. Write one sentence explaining your solution! Mesopotamia Basics: Mesopotamia means land between two rivers. Mesopotamia lies between the TIGRIS and

EUPHRATES Rivers. Cities started to develop in the southern part of this land. Early Cities in Mesopotamia: The earliest cities developed around 3500 BC. Each city was like a small, independent country . They had their own rulers and

farmland. These cities were surrounded by walls made of sunbaked bricks. Why would the cities be surrounded by walls? Life in the Fertile Crescent: The northern part of Mesopotamia was very hilly and received a lot of rain.

The southern part had low, flat land. The sun was very harsh. The river brought water to the valley during the flood season, but the rest of the year the soil was hard and dry. Using Adjectives (Descriptive Words):

List 5 words you think best describe the geography of ancient Mesopotamia. Why did you pick those words? Building in Mesopotamia: It was difficult to build shelter/homes in the

river valley. Building materials were hard to find. There were lots of reeds (weeds by the river). There were not a lot of trees for wood. Even stones were scarce. What did the people build their home with? 4 Major Problems Facing Mesopotamians:

#1 food shortages in the hills #2 uncontrollable water supply in the plains #3 difficulties building and maintaining systems to provide water across village boundaries #4 attacks from neighboring communities Problem #1 Food Shortages

In early years (Neolithic Era), rolling foothills of Zargros Mountains in northern Mesopotamia had good conditions for growing crops: Mild weather Plentiful rains Fertile Soil Timber for building homes

Write about it: Describe some ADVANTAGES to living in the foothills of the Zagros Mountains? Lots of people moved to this area and cities grew dramatically.

By 5000 BC, farmers didnt have enough land to grow food for all the people. As a result, villages suffered from food shortages. Cause = Population Grew Effect = Food Shortages

Write about it: Draw and label a simple picture showing the problem that occurred around 5000 BC. Below the foothills to the south, the Tigris and

Euphrates Rivers ran over flat plains. The plains were large and not many people lived there. Most of the year, the land was hard and dry. There were few trees to build shelters. There were few stones to make tools. BUT THE RIVERS FLOODED EVERY SPRING.

Could the floods make the soil fertile for farming? Think about it: Based on what youve learned, what is a possible solution to the problem of

the shortage of land to grow food? Driven by the need to grow more food, people moved out of the foothills to the plains. This region became known as SUMER and the people were called the

SUMERIANS. Who were the Sumerians? Sumer Video Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4jQninQqu-Y Think about it

What factors impacted the growth of the city of Sumer? #2 Uncontrollable Water Supply Farmers who moved to Sumer faced many challenges. The biggest problem was the water supply! In the spring, the melted snow from the

mountains and rains caused the rivers to flood the plains. No one knew exactly when the floods would happen Impact of the Floods: Flooding after the crops were planted = loss of baby plants and seeds.

When it wasnt flood season, the ground was hard and dry. The wind blew lots of dust around. The always had too little or too much water! PROBLEM how could they control the water so they could use it year round? Write about it:

Describe the seasonal weather changes in Sumer. Explain the impact the weather changes had on the farmers ability to raise crops. Solution!!! The Sumerian farmers created IRRIGATION

systems. They built LEVEES by the rivers to prevent floods. When the land was dry, they poked holes in the LEVEES and the water flowed into the fields. Advancements in Irrigation: Over time, the Sumerians learned other ways to control the water supply.

1) They dug canals for the water to flow through. 2) They constructed dams to block the water. 3) The blocked water created reservoirs/pools. Irrigation Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5RP2KfewiJA Describe how the Mesopotamian

farmers solve the problem of uncontrollable water supplies? Illustrate it: Draw and label a picture illustrating the problem caused by uncontrollable water supplies. Draw and label a picture showing the

Sumerian Irrigation System.

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