Updated: Oct 5, 2019
I didn't care for Time4learning's World history unit for my son. He tends to take what he hears from one source and repeats it verbatim as the ultimate truth. I decided that, to prevent this singularity, I would make him curriculum piecemeal from lots of different sources on the internet. Some may have differing or even slightly conflicting information, but this gives him a chance to compare information and sources, and use critical thinking to sort it out. I know some people look down upon people who "google" research, but I feel that many of them think in the same way my son does now: if it didn't come from the same mouth as the rest of my information, it can't be valid.
No one has a monopoly on the truth. No one place in the world contains the absolute truth. There are so many different theories and stories, especially on a less cemented topic like history. Even recent history is hard to pin down exactly, since the truth changes by which observer is retelling what happened. It's not that they lie (although many do), but that perception has such a huge impact on what really happened.
To start, the videos on amazon are free if you have Amazon Prime. Any videos from Download Destination or Hoopla are free if you have a public library card - which I highly suggest getting if you don't have one yet! You'll find directions to the cuneiform project below the study unit list.
Timelines of Ancient Civilizations
Read Fertile Crescent
Make Cylinder Seals
Watch Babylon Unveiled
Examine Ancient Mesopotamian Art
Watch Mesopotamia Explained
Explore Mesopotamian religious pantheon
Cuneiform Name Tablet project
Optional: plastic tablecloth or saran wrap to work on, to prevent mess and make clean up easy.
Have the student roll out some clay until its between 1/4-1/2 inch thick.
Trim the edges to keep it neat, or leave rounded off if student prefers that look.
Use this link to get the students name (it only allows for three letters at a time, so it will take a couple clicks to get their whole name - or just do their initials).
Use the clay sculpting tools or Popsicle sticks to either scrap out or press in to make the cuneiform letters.
If using oven-bake, follow the directions to bake the clay. If using air dry, leave it someplace safe (and preferably on something plastic or a paper plate to protect whatever it's resting on) to air dry until its completely dried.
Bonus - To see a cool relief of their cuneiform name or initials, have them do a rubbing with paper and crayon or charcoal!