BELLBROOK — Students in Sarah Seitz’s social studies classes at Bellbrook Middle School recently visited the ancient world via Google Expeditions and Virtual Reality.
In sixth grade, students learn about the three kingdoms: Old (age of the pyramids), Middle (reunification), and New (the Golden Age). These periods had leaders, known as pharaohs, who had many remarkable achievements. Among those achievements were gigantic monuments, temples, and structures, which have long passed the test of time.
Pharaoh Khufu (2551-2528 B.C.E.) was the first of his kind and was responsible for the great pyramid of Giza. More tan 4,000 years have gone by and it is still a wonder of the ancient world. The pyramid is at the center of a large complex filled with the previously mentioned statues, monuments, and smaller pyramids.
Google Expedition has a tour of the pyramids and complex, as well as the temples of Abu Simbel. These temples built by, and dedicated to, Ramses II, were carved directly into a cliff in modern day Nubia, on the banks of the Nile River. It is easy to read about these temples, but hard to grasp how magnanimous they are. The virtual reality tour allowed students to put themselves in the shoes of a tourist directly at the feet of Ramses II’s massive statues. This led to much deeper, and more meaningful, dialogue about how the ancient Egyptians lived their daily lives and how their social structure affected their daily lives.
The students boarded their Egyptian falluka, and traveled down the Nile, starting in Cairo, heading south towards Kush, stopping to see the sites along the way.
The students commented that they were ready for another adventure using virtual reality and are excited about visiting a new site soon.