external image dynasty_title.gif
Ancient China Wheelborrow
Ancient China Wheelborrow

Students will:
    • 1. Analyze the development of a specific dynasty in China.
    • 2. Analyze whether or not China’s history repeats itself.
Project Description:
For this project student will be divided up into five dynasty groups:
      • Shang Dynasty 1766-1122 BCE
      • Zhou (Chou) Dynasty 1122-221 BCE
      • Qin (Chin) Dynasty 221-207 BCE
      • Han Dynasty 202 BCE-220 CE
      • Tang Dynasty 618-907 CE
Each group will be assigned a particular dynasty to research and each person within the group will be assigned a focus question to answer and an artifact to create that addresses the focus question. When all the artifacts and focus questions are complete, students will participate in a gallery walk where they will take notes on each of the focus questions. Finally all students will answer a writing prompt asking, “Based on your own research, and the research done by others, do you think China’s history repeats itself?”
Project Timeline:
  • January 3 - Introduction of project, groups and overview questions
  • January 3-6 - Research focus questions in Media Center and computer lab
  • January 10- Students must get artifact approval from teacher
  • January 11-12- Complete written project and artifact independently
Overview Questions:
  • Each member of the group is going to have to answer a different overview question and then create an artifact representing the information researched. Below are all of the questions in addition to a “breakdown” of bulleted ideas that will help you answer the main question. Place a check next to the question you will be working on for the project.

Economic Questions:
Chinese Seal
Chinese Seal

What proof is there that the ideas practiced by the dynasty affected the economic system? (Focus on role that government played in the economy)
Items to focus on:
    • 1. Explain the main ideas of the dynasty
    • 2. Explain the types of jobs people had.
    • 3. Explain things people bought and sold.
    • 4. Explain what they traded and who they traded with
    • 5. Explain any types of new technology they developed
How did the ideas the dynasty had affect peoples' jobs and economic status at the different levels of society?
    • 1. Explain the main ideas of the dynasty.
    • 2. Explain what social classes existed in society
    • 3. Explain how different levels of society may have had more or less money.
    • 4. Explain whether or not the social class determined what kind of job you had.

Political Questions:
What proof is there that the ideas practiced by the dynasty affected the political system? (Focus on how the dynasties ideas are reflected in the government and how it works)
    • 1. Explain the main ideas of the dynasty
    • 2. Explain how the government worked. Explain who had power and whether or not it was a democracy or authoritarian
    • 3. Explain how and if the government helped the people.
    • 4. Explain who made laws and how they were made and whether or not they applied equally to everyone.
    • 5. Explain how the next emperor came to power.
    • 6. Explain whether or not the dynasty had any influence outside China and whether or not they expanded or unified China.
How did the political ideas of the dynasty affect people in the different social classes?
    • 1. Explain the political ideas of the dynasty
    • 2. Explain the different social classes
    • 3. Explain the different social classes participated in the government.
    • 4. Explain how they felt about people outside of China from different societies.
Social Questions: external image emperor5-s.jpg
How did the economic situation or decisions made by the government affect the different social classes?
    • 1. Explain the levels of society.
    • 2. Explain the role of women and children in society.
    • 3. Explain how the social classes were affected by either a rich or poor economy.

How were the ideas of the dynasty shown in the arts and technology?
    • 1. Explain any important writings, thoughts, ideas, or philosophies that were developed during the dynasty.
    • 2. Explain any arts (architecture, poetry, painting, pottery, music, textiles) that developed.
    • 3. Explain any forms of technology that developed.
    • 4. Explain how arts/technology were used in people's lives.

Once the Overview question has been selected you will use the resources that follow in order to answer all parts of the question. Your final write up will be on a large 5x7 index card. You need to type up your answer, cut it out, and paste it to your index card. Do not write more than can fit on the index card. You must also include information on what your artifact is. It needs to be typed in Times New Roman 12 point font. The index card will accompany your artifact during the gallery walk.

Research Resources:
While searching all online and text resources you will want to choose specific keywords (and combinations of words) that will guide you to the best information possible on your topic. Helpful keywords and terms:

  • Chinese Dynasty
  • Ancient China
  • Shang Dynasty
  • Zhou(Chou)Dynasty
  • Qin(Chin) Dynasty
  • Han Dynasty
  • Tang(T’ang) Dynasty
  • Economic System
  • Economy
  • Jobs
  • Goods and Services
  • Markets
  • Trade
Trade route
Political System
Social System
Levels of Society
Building Projects
Regional map

Ivory Carving
Ivory Carving

The Ancient Dynasties
A-Z Kid's Stuff: China

Zhou Dynasty
Ancient, Classical History: China

Dynasty Guide: Chou Dynasty
China Travel Guide: Tang Dynasty
Tang Dynasty
Daily Life in Ancient China
Ancient China
Ancient China Index

The British Museum
Ancient China

Chinese Dynasties
ThinkQuest Cinese Dynasties
Seattle Art Museum
Ancient China
Chinese History

Sackler Art Gallery
Walter's Art Gallery

Dynasty Artifact

After you complete your overview question you need to create a replica of an artifact representing some aspect of your question. The artifact needs to be something you make and must be 3-D. Therefore, it cannot be a drawing on a regular piece of paper. Some ideas include a diorama showing a scene that has to do with your question, pottery or anything made out of clay, jewelry, etc…To help you get some ideas you can check out the Smithsonian's Sackler Art Gallery website at http://www.asia.si.edu or the Walter's Art Gallery website at http://www.thewalters.org .

You must notify your teacher of what you artifact will be by January 10th.


I. The written part of your project will be worth 30 points and must include all of the following to receive full credit.
  1. a. It must be typed 12 pt font, Times New Roman
  2. b. It must fit on the index card provided
  3. c. Grammar and spelling must be proficient
  4. d. The question must be completely answered
  5. e. What the artifact is must be stated on the card

II. The artifact for you project will be worth 20 points and must include all of the following to receive full credit:
a. It must be 3-D
b. It must relate directly to your question
c. It must be no larger than 10”x12”
d. It must be approved by the teacher by January 10th.

III. The BCR for your project will be worth 10 points and must include all of the following to receive full credit:
a. It must answer whether or not you believe China’s history repeats itself, and have at least 3 pieces of evidence (examples, proof, research, facts) from the projects to support the answer.
b. It must include the note-taking guide you filled out during the gallery walk.
c. It must be in complete sentences and be grammatically proficient.