Fun Ancient Egypt Lesson Plans and Activities for Kids
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This year I decided to put together my son’s middle school social studies curriculum rather than purchase a ready-to-use program. I didn’t see anything that really caught my eye, so rather than trudge through something that didn’t feel right for him, I decided to teach his history as a series of unit studies. The first ancient history unit study to tackle was Ancient Egypt for kids.
I knew that I wanted to work through a collection of world history unit studies because my 9th-grade daughter is working on a high school-level world history course.
Having both kids working on similar tasks is just good for my mom sanity level. It also allows us to occasionally watch a movie or do a project together that is related to both of their studies.
We studied ancient civilizations a few years ago, but Ben was around second grade then. I’m not really sure how much he remembers now that he is in 6th grade.
I like to plan our unit studies before we actually do the lessons. Each unit study contains hands-on activities, book suggestions, videos to watch, and field trip ideas. This assortment of learning activities keeps history interesting and not dull.
Fun Ancient Egypt Lesson Plans and Activities for Kids
Table of Contents
- Fun Ancient Egypt Lesson Plans and Activities for Kids
Ancient Egypt Projects for Kids
I knew we needed this hands-on art history course in our lives as soon as I saw it in the vendor hall at the Carolina Homeschool Conference.
Hannah is joining Ben in completing the art projects because she is also studying Ancient Egypt right now. She has always enjoyed art, so this is a nice addition to her history curriculum.
Each Take Time for Art topic contains streaming videos to provide background information and photographs of the actual art. There are also art packs that make it easy to actually do the projects at home.
The Ancient Egypt art pack includes just about everything you need to complete:
- Egyptian mummy mask
- Egyptian tomb painting
- air-dried clay William the Hippo replica
I am much more likely to actually complete art projects with my kids if all the materials are already in my house!
Technically, it is recommended to use one art pack for each child, but in order to save money, I plan to have my kids work together on a project when possible. If it isn’t really possible, such as with the air dry clay, I will purchase extra art supplies.
Building a pyramid out of sugar cubes is a fun classic Ancient Egypt for kids project. It is my favorite of all possible pyramid projects because the materials are so easy to find. Just about any grocery store has sugar cubes in the baking aisle.
After the pyramid is constructed you can either leave the sugar cubes white or paint them tan to resemble the sand color of actual Egyptian pyramids.
Other pyramid projects include:
- Building a pyramid out of Legos
- Carving a pyramid from a block of styrofoam
- Building a pyramid from sand (this is probably best to do outside)
Rice Krispies map of Egypt
Rice Krispies maps are a fun way to learn geography. We followed these steps to make a Rice Krispies map of Egypt. Hershey’s Kisses represented pyramids, Hershey’s Nuggets as temples, M&Ms were used as cities, and frosting showed the Nile River.
You can use the Rice Krispies Egypt map to note Upper Egypt, Lower Egypt, the Red Sea, the Valley of the Kings and Ancient Egyptian temples.
Ancient Egyptians used hieroglyphics to record information.
Learning about hieroglyphics is an essential part of any Ancient Egypt unit study. This free activity pack teaches children to spell their own names using hieroglyphics. After studying the hieroglyphic alphabet, kids can also practice decoding secret messages.
Check out Ancient Egypt Primary Sources
Primary sources are the gold standard for educational resources. Typically, kids don’t encounter many primary sources until they are high school students or in college, but there is no reason why they can’t be introduced to them earlier. The linked page shows many online Ancient Egypt primary sources as well as English translations.
Dover coloring books are really high quality and make a great addition to any unit study. Educational coloring books are perfect for strewing around the house or adding to a themed boredom-busting basket.
Books for Kids About Ancient Egypt
1,000 Facts about Ancient Egypt by Nancy Honovich
This book quickly became one of my son’s favorites. We spent quite a bit of time reading through it so we could tell each other interesting facts about Egyptian culture and daily life in Ancient Egypt.
Each page spread contains a number of unique information. Topics include fashion, medical care, art, inventions, government, temples, and so much more.
The photographs in this book are the star of the show. It is almost like a trip to a museum from the comfort of your living room. This book provides an overview of many areas of Ancient Egyptian life.
Blast Back Ancient Egypt by Nancy Ohlin
This chapter book is a great resource for kids who really prefer nonfiction. My son did not like fictional stories, even realistic historical fiction when he was younger.
If You Were a Kid Building a Pyramid by Lawrence Schimel
I thought that I knew a decent amount about how the pyramids were built. Then I read this book. The storyline follows a teenage boy who spends the day helping build a pyramid.
One page tells a realistic fictional story while the opposite page offers corresponding nonfiction information.
Ancient Egypt: Tales of Gods and Pharaohs by Marcia Williams
This book tells the stories of several famous Egyptian gods and pharaohs. The stories are told through comic strips, making them inviting to children. The illustrations are beautiful. They almost seem to pop off the page.
Seeker of Knowledge: The Man Who Deciphered Egyptian Hieroglyphs by James Rumford
Jean-Francois was fascinated by Ancient Egypt as a child. That innate curiosity grew and grew. When he grew up, Jean was obsessed with Egyptology and studied hieroglyphs relentlessly.
His hard work paid off and he became the first person to decode the ancient hieroglyphs.
Online Videos About Ancient Egypt
I like to include a video lesson or two in my unit studies whenever possible. It breaks up the lessons and helps me teach two kids two different subjects at one time. Streaming online videos is kind of like my own teaching assistant.
Crash Course History Ancient Egypt
I love Crash Course History videos. The Crash Course website indicates the videos are intended for high school age, but my kids began watching them in late elementary school. They provide a ton of info in a short amount of time. This video is only a little over 11 minutes. My son watched it as the introduction to our Ancient Egypt unit study.
Khan Academy is a wonderful free resource. This particular course includes a lot of reading, so it is probably best for teens. There are videos included too. You have the option of working through the entire course or watching just the videos.
We bought a CuriosityStream subscription over the summer and have really enjoyed it. It is so nice to have easy access to quality educational documentaries.
There are currently quite a few videos and video clips about Ancient Egypt streaming . . .
So far, our favorites have included:
- The True Story of King Tut’s Tomb
- Scanning the Pyramids
- Scribes of Ancient Egypt
Ancient Egypt Field Trips (Including Virtual Field Trips)
As amazing as it would be, a trip to Egypt just isn’t in the budget for my family. Instead, we will check out the resources that are closer to North Carolina.
The Smithsonian Natural History Museum is a fantastic field trip if you are in the DC area. We try to make the trip to DC every year or two and tour the museums.
The Ancient Egypt exhibit is permanent and includes mummies and amulets.
We are lucky to have such a great art museum in Raleigh. This museum includes a nice-sized Ancient Egypt exhibit. We have walked through the rows of sarcophagi and canopic jars in the past but will be returning again.
If you are in the Raleigh area, I highly recommend making this free field trip.
British Museum – Egypt Exhibit
The Egypt exhibit in the British Museum is amazing! Here you will find great additions to your Ancient Egypt lesson plans. This online resource includes:
- The Rosetta Stone
- Early Egyptian Life
- Egyptian Life and Death
This is a field trip that anyone with an internet connection can visit. We may never make it to Egypt, but we have seen the Pyramids.
- Go to Google Maps.
- Type ‘Great Pyramid of Giza’ into the map search bar.
- Drag the little person figure onto the map. Place it in front of the pyramid of your choice.
- Now street view will be engaged and you can ‘walk’ around and sight see.
This Egyptian Museum showcases the largest collection of Ancient Egyptian artifacts in the Western United States. The museum is located in San Jose, California, but they have quite a bit of information online too.
Online you can:
- Take virtual tours of the entire museum
- View exhibit pieces such as jewelry, funeral items, and mummies
- Learn about Egyptian time periods
- Access the educator resources
Looking for more Ancient Egypt ideas? Check out the online Ancient Egypt unit study! It is perfect for upper elementary and middle school students.
Have you ever taught Ancient Egypt for kids? This fun unit study topic has come up a few times over our many years of homeschooling. These ideas are perfect for homeschool, but can also work as classroom activities.
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