One major theme of early river valley civilizations is that civilizations who are able to predict the flood patterns of their rivers are much more successful than those who live near rivers that flood unpredictably. To relate to students’ own lives I devised the following formative assessment.

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Tying Up Loose Ends

We’ve been talking about predictability recently.

For the most part humans don’t like surprises. In fact, we might be able to say that predictability gives us a better chance of succeeding.

Examples:

In our lives…
Mrs. Lobocki & Mr. Gerlach get a paycheck from the school every other friday. This lets us plan for paying bills, buying food for our families, and other fun stuff we like to spend our money on.

If the school paid us on random dates, we wouldn’t be able to plan for these things. We might run out of money which could leave us without power (if we couldn’t pay the electric bill), with empty bellies (if we couldn’t buy food), and we would be really bored (if we couldn’t pay for other fun stuff to do).

In the River Valley Civilizations…
The Tigris & Euphrates flooded randomly and often destroyed crops if they planted them before a flood — not a successful thing for Mesopotamians

The Nile flooded at the same time every year and the Egyptians never needed to worry about food
In the case of rivers, the Nile was a pretty awesome one

Click here to view the entire lesson

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