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Goals Objectives Materials Web Procedure Standards

Oracle Bones and Philosophy

Objectives: 1 ) Students will understand that the Tao Te Ching ( Dao De Jing.) is a book that suggests ways rulers, people, and nature can live in harmony. 2) Students will be able to compare and contrast Taoism & Confucianism.
3) Students will experience the beauty, difficulty, and techniques of Chinese characters.

Background Skills/Knowledge:
Students will have studied the text as well as discussed and answered questions regarding the Tao Te Ching, Taoism, Confucianism, Oracke Bones, and Chinese caligraphy.

Vocabulary / Language Skills:
Taoism • Confucianism • Lao-Tzu • Confucius • Chinese characters • "the way" • oracle bones •

Student Handouts (1) i Excerpts & questions about Lao Tzu & Confucius (2) Chinese character examples (3) A Message of Ancient Days (text) (4) World Wide Web(5) Construction Paper (6)Glue (7) Popsicle Sticks (8) Ink Pens


"If we are not to live with our fellow men, with whom can we live?"

"Behave when away from home as if you were in the presence of an important guest."

"Do not do to others what you do not want done to yourself."


"The wise know their limitations; the foolish do not."

"Recognize who you really are, and you will find your way to happiness."

"I am not at all interested in immortality, only in the taste of tea."

+++++++++++++++++++++ WEB RESOURCES +++++++++++++++++++++


Learn to Draw Chinese Characters ~

Chinese Web Dictionary ~

History for Kids ~

HistoryWiz ~

Oracle Bones ~

Daily Life ~

Taoism Information Page ~

Religious Tolerance ~

MSN Encarta ~




California K-12 Academic Content Standards

Subject : History & Social Science
Grade : Grade Six
Area : World History and Geography: Ancient Civilizations

Students in grade six expand their understanding of history by studying the people and events that ushered in the dawn of the major Western and non-Western ancient civilizations. Geography is of special significance in the development of the human story. Continued emphasis is placed on the everyday lives, problems, and accomplishments of people, their role in developing social, economic, and political structures, as well as in establishing and spreading ideas that helped transform the world forever. Students develop higher levels of critical thinking by considering why civilizations developed where and when they did, why they became dominant, and why they declined. Students analyze the interactions among the various cultures, emphasizing their enduring contributions and the link, despite time, between the contemporary and ancient worlds.• Sub-Strand 6.6: Students analyze the geographic, political, economic, religious, and social structures of the early civilizations of China.

Standard 3: Know about the life of Confucius and the fundamental teachings of Confucianism and Taoism.





Students will analyze portions of the
Tao Te Ching (Dao De Jing) and Confucian writings while evaluating what the Chinese philosophers thought about conduct, rulers, and human relationships.
Students will characterize what these 2 Chinese philophers say about human relationships and compare these beliefs to their own lives.
Students will draw Chinese characters, paste & arrange sticks to look like oracle bones, and maintain a sense of overall design for their project.



Students will work in their teams to research the vocabulary terms and Chinese characters on the internet using the links provided and add any new information to their notebooks.
Student teams will receive handouts that include the 1st 10 (of 81) chapters of the Tao Te Ching as well as sayings of Confucius,


They will choose/read/discuss 4, go over the questions on the back, and "report out"

The teacher and the other students will review their answers, and give feedback, add to the discussion, etc. If a group's progress appears too incomplete, teacher will make suggestions and students will revise their answers. When questions are adequately answered, students will receive supplies for the next part of the activity which will have directions/diagram on the board.

Students will receive 5 popsicle sticks and arrange/glue them like the 'oracle bones' found on page 254 or from images on the internet. They then will 'draw' several Chinese characters along the lengths of the bones. Examples of Chinese writing will be found on a provided worksheet and from the SS chapter on China.

Underneath the 5 sticks students will write (in English) their favorite 4 lines from the Tao Te Ching
or Confucius. To the right of the popsicle sticks, students will write 1-3 of the Chinese characters approx 2 by 2 inches.


Students groups will present what they learned/made in front of the class.


Students will be assessed on: answers to the questions on the student handout, presentations, discussions, notebooks, and their drawings of Chinese characters.



Student Learning Samples from 2002

International Studies Learning Center Phone 323.568.3155 Fax 323.568.3153

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