Maya calendar activity and quizzes (KS2)

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In this post, you’ll find activities for kids around the Maya calendar. This resource can be used for the Maya Key Stage 2 (KS2) curriculum. To learn how the Maya calendar works please see our article: The Maya Calendar Explained   1. Make your own Maya Calendar To make your own Maya calendar, you can […]

Archaeology: Learn, Practice, Excavate!

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Created in collaboration with London Grid for Learning, Archaeology: Learn, Practice, Excavate! is a general and wide-reaching resource that can be used by all primary teachers in history. There are three stages to this KS2 History resource, which shows pupils how archaeology is used to ‘dig up the past’ and decode History.  

What if British history was told the same way Maya history is told?

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There is so much incorrect information about the Maya online. This causes me much frustration, particularly as teachers (KS2 History Maya Civilisation) unknowingly are teaching these inaccuracies in the classroom and thousands of children are learning untruths about the Maya. There should be some sort of standard set for these ‘educational’ online resources, in order that […]

How to spot untrustworthy resources on the Maya

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Since the ancient Maya have been added to the Key Stage 2 national curriculum for History (non-European Study) in the UK, there’s been a ‘mushrooming’ of online resources covering the topic, most of which are downright awful! After the recent flawed news story about a teenager finding a Maya site, I thought it an apt […]

Maya words and glyphs for the colours

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The Maya had all the colours we know but only five colour glyphs have been deciphered: white (sak), black (ik’), yellow (k’an), red (chak) and blue/green (yax).   White / sak In Maya cosmology, the colour white is associated with the North    

Maya words and glyphs for the Cardinal Directions

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Cardinal Directions are the most commonly used forms of direction. and include North, South, East and West. The Mayan words for north, south, east and west are respectively xaman, nohol, lak’in and ochk’in. Below, two variations of the glyph for north (xaman):      

The sky and the earth

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Although it is often said that the ancient Maya had conceived of a layered heaven, there is only one word for “sky” in Mayan languages: kan (also written chan)      

Maya word for alligator

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The Mayas used the same word for various species of crocodiles (Crocodylus acutus and Crocodylus moreleti) and caimans (Caiman crocodilus): A’ayin or Ahiin. The glyph for Ahiin is the stylised head of a crocodile with a cross in the eye:    

The Jaguar

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The Maya word for Jaguar (Panthera Onca) is Bahlam or B’alam. In classic Maya script, it could be written several ways: as a logogram representing the entire word      

Maya numbers and arithmetic

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As early as the Late Preclassic (ca 400 BC), the ancient Maya used a positional, vigesimal (base 20) notation involving the use of the mathematical concept “zero”, a truly great intellectual accomplishment and one of the earliest known instance of this concept in the world (the Europeans never invented the “zero”, they borrowed it from the […]

The White-nosed coati

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The white-nose coati (Nasua narica) is a relative of raccoons. It is also known as Coatmundi. In Mexico they call it Tejon, while it is called Pizote in Guatemala and in Costa Rica. The Maya name for the pizote is Chi’ik or Ch’we, but the Lacandon call it  Ts’uts’u.

2016 Teacher Trip to Guatemala Programme

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Itinerary Day 1: Monday 3rd April Antigua We will arrive at Guatemala City’s international airport, La Aurora and travel by shuttle to the beautiful colonial city of Antigua. A UNESCO World Heritage site, Antigua was once one of the regional capitals of the Spanish Empire. The city is full of colourful colonial architecture and is […]

Wooden Maya Calendar

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This beautiful calendar is the perfect tool to explain and understand the concept of time and timekeeping of the ancient Maya. This product is suited for the Maya Key Stage 2 (KS2) history curriculum.

Paper Maya Calendar

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The pack includes the full Maya calendar (Calendar Round) with 5 separate rings to be cut out in white card. Includes a pin for fixing the rings, information about the calendar, instructions and a quiz. This product is suited for the Maya Key Stage 2 (KS2) history curriculum.

Our Maya Active Worksheet Pack is a Bett Awards 2016 Winner

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“A Journey Through the Maya World” was nominated for the Bett Awards 2016 in the Primary Digital Content category. Well, we’re now officially a Bett Awards 2016 Winner! Formerly known as the British Educational Training and Technology Show, the Bett Awards are an annual celebration for the highest levels of achievement by companies that supply Information and Communications […]

Frequently asked questions about the Maya

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You have a question?  First, check the FAQ below to see if it hasn’t already been answered. You’ll also find information on the Maya World page. What is your question about? (click the titles to expand the lists and discovers all the questions and Diane’s answers)   Diane and her life as an Archaeologist   […]

Maya Civilisation KS2 – Free teaching resources

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  Hello, my name is Dr Diane Davies. I’m an archaeologist and Maya expert. I provide resources and workshops for teachers, schools and all those interested in learning about the Maya. What are you looking for?   Facts about the ancient Maya See here for An overview of the Maya world Go there for an […]

Inside the Maya Calendar

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by David Chatelain (Tulane University) An Introduction to the Maya calendar and the 2012 excavations of the La Corona Archaeological Project (Guatemala). Access presentation (PDF)