Activities you can do at home

Posted · 16 Comments

Some of these activities were created as a result of my annual teacher trip to the Maya area by Abigail Griffiths (St. Margaret’s Preparatory School, Essex) and Tizzy McManus (Doddiscombsleigh Primary School, Devon). Make your own: Worry Doll Chatterbox Snakes and Ladders Board Game Maya Mask Maya Headdress Maya Chocolate Pot Emblem Glyphs Stela Nahuales  […]

The Value of Egyptian Written Sources Concerning Egyptian Magic

Posted · Add Comment

Egyptian magic in contrast to our Western conception of magic, was a legitimate activity, being part of the natural order, and formed part of religion and medicine.  Our main source material for Egyptian magic is written, including actual magical texts, funerary texts and medical papyri, to narratives and inscriptions on stelae.  However, the written spell […]

Who owns the Past?

Posted · Add Comment

“Because men really respect only that which was founded of old and has developed slowly, he who wants to live on after his death must take care not only of his posterity but even more of his past: which is why tyrants of every kind (including tyrannical artists and politicians) like to do violence to […]

Cultural Activism in Mesoamerica: An Assessment of Recent Movements

Posted · Add Comment

Introduction Since 1521 the Indians in Mesoamerica have been oppressed by Europeans and later by their ladino/mestizo governments.  Cultural resistance in Mesoamerica has varied in extent and force over time and between countries.  There were sporadic but unsuccessful revolts during the colonial period in Mesoamerica.  Resistance continued into the 19th century, the Caste War among […]

Late Preclassic Abandonment in the Maya Area: Scale and Causality

Posted · Add Comment

Abstract During the Late Preclassic Period, particularly from A.D. 200-250, widespread abandonment and/or hiatus in construction occurs across sites in the Maya area. Regions most affected were Chiapas, El Petén and the Yucatán peninsula.  A preliminary discussion of the causal factors behind site abandonment is given.  In reviewing existing data, it appears that a combination […]

The Maya Calendar Explained (KS2)

Posted · 8 Comments

The Maya calendar (and time keeping in pre-Columbian Mesoamerica) is a fascinating but poorly understood topic that has gathered much interest in recent years (particularly around 2012!). In this article, we will explain how the Maya calendar was made, how it works and how to read it. Time was extremely important to the Maya, they […]

Maya Gods and Religious Beliefs (KS2)

Posted · Add Comment

Maya gods, goddesses and deities, along with the religious beliefs attached to them, changed over the course of several millennia. This creates much confusion that we’ll try to dissipate in this article. This resource can be use for the History Key Stage 2 (KS2) curriculum.   NB: specialists of the Maya civilisation say “Maya gods”, […]

Maya Numerals & Mathematics

Posted · 9 Comments

Ancient Maya arithmetic and numeration system, with its Dot-and-Bar notation and concept of zero, is a fascinating topic. In this article, we will explain how to read the Maya numerals and how to do mathematical operations in the Maya vigesimal system. This resource can be use for the History Key Stage 2 (KS2) curriculum.

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

Posted · 20 Comments

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

Posted · 23 Comments

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 […]