Monday, February 3, 2014

A is for Africa - Egypt Activities

As part of our Africa Week, we spent some time learning about Ancient Egypt.

On the first day of our Africa Week, I set up a mini "archaeological dig" with some of the figures from M's new Ancient Egypt TOOB. She LOVED this activity, and came back to it several times throughout the week. If I knew how successful this would be, I would have bought more sand so I could have used a larger container. I only had a couple small bags of brown sand from a colored sand kit, so put a few small figures in the bottom of a container and covered them with the sand I had. I added some tools on her tray - a scoop, tweezers, a brush, and a magnifying glass.

She used the scoop to dig through the sand until she found something, then brushed the sand off the top and used her tweezers to lift the object out of the sand. I printed the TOOB Key from Living Montessori Now so she could match the figures with the picture as she found them, and we could talk about the names of each of the objects.

I found this Little Einsteins video on YouTube - The Legend of the Golden Pyramid. M doesn't watch this show much, but she really enjoyed this episode, and wanted to build her own Golden Pyramid out of duplos.

She got out her binoculars to help her find the pyramid (she kept hiding it in different places). Then she would pull off some duplos from the bottom to "open the pyramid."

While she was playing with her pyramid, I printed off some sheets of hieroglyphic letters. I had planned on making potato stamps, but when we got to the kitchen I realize that I forgot to buy more potatoes... whoops! I improvised and made some stamps out of sheets of foam glued to alphabet blocks.

This would have been a lot easier if I had the self-adhesive sheets of foam, but I didn't, so we used glue. I cut out squares of foam the same size as the blocks, and glued four squares together so the stamp would stick off the block a good bit. I drew some of the hieroglyphic letters onto the sheets of foam (I chose the letters in M's name), and then cut out the outlines of the shapes and glued them to the blocks.

It actually worked out nicely to use the alphabet blocks because I glued the stamp onto the blocks with the corresponding letter. M could flip over the stamp and see what letter that image represented. I gave her a paintbrushes to paint the surface of the stamp instead of dipping them so she wouldn't have quite so much paint on the stamps. We stamped them onto cut up brown paper bags because that looked more "ancient" to me. She really enjoyed this activity, and in the end I'm glad we didn't have potatoes because now we can keep the stamps!

Disclaimer: This post contains Amazon Affiliate links for your convenience.

Check the main Geography post for links to all of the activities we've done so far. The rest of our Africa Week activities can be found here.

Linking up With:
Hip Homeschool Hop
Artsy Play Wednesday


  1. What a great idea! I traveled to Egypt in college and am continuously fascinated by the origins of writing and mathematics. Thank you so much for sharing with us on FB! It was sooo hard to choose, but I've added three of my favorites to the bottom of this week's playful preschool post on Exploring Simple Science with TRAINS!!!

    1. Thanks for stopping by! That trains unit looks like so much fun! I'm pinning it for later - I'm sure my daughter would love it!

  2. I love your blog!!! Such down to earth and reasonable ideas that also are interesting to a child. Love it!!!