We have been slowly moving our way through the Chinese dynasties at one per week, learning about the unique features of each and any of their well-known inventions. This week we looked at the Zhou (pronounced Joe) dynasty. The older children weren’t well with the same infection the younger ones had earlier in the week, so I kept it light and simple.
I had the children read up on the Zhou dynasty using this website. I bowed to pressure and they completed the follow-up multiple choice question. Weird what my children find fun!
Main Religions or Philosophical thinking
My main goal for this week was to introduce the children to the religions which were introduced during this time period:
We have a few books on world religions which the children used to obtain a quick outline of each:
After they had read all they could I asked them some questions orally, to check for understanding, and then I gave them 12 or so pictures and some card, each piece labelled with one of the religions. They needed to match the pictures to the religions to create a collage type note page:
Did you know that each religion has its own form of the ‘Golden Rule’? We used this page:
- From Confucianism
Never do to others what you would not like them to do to you.
- From Buddhism
Hurt not others in ways that you yourself would find hurtful.
- From Taoism
Regard your neighbour’s gain as your own gain, and your neighbour’s loss as your own loss.
Assignment: Read each “Golden Rule” below and compare and contrast the wording. How similar is the advice? What is different? Which version(s) “speak” in a compelling way to you? Why? (from the website). We simply discussed this.
Another invention which occurred during the Zhou dynasty was chain stitch embroidery, which dates back to 1100BC.
This was very timely as the girls have just started showing an interest in embroidery, even doing some stitching for a lady in our church who had just lost her mum. However, as I have never taught them they used what they knew, which was plain stitch and nylon thread. It has been on my mind to teach them a little about how to embroider since then and this afforded us the perfect opportunity. We used this little picture to help us:
I had them fetch their embroidery rings, and gave one to T11 to use also and set about teaching them chain stitch:
Here are some of their practise stitches:
We drew a simple design on paper and transferred it to their material using a light pencil and then proceeded to stitch:
For me, although this was an academically very easy week (due to illness), because we have learnt a new skill which will last a lifetime, it feels a really worthwhile week. The girls will now be able to embroider cloth properly because their mother has finally found the time to teach them!!
Our Chinese meal this week was crispy shredded duck and pancakes:
Next, we’ll be studying the Qin dynasty and the inventions associated with that period in China’s history.