The Mayans

The Mayans

Meet chocolate's creators

The Mayans were one of the most advanced civilisations of their age. At their height they created vast cities of stone buildings, including temples and observatories, designed complex mathematical and writing systems and organised their lives around a sophisticated calendar. 

In this Topic Day, explore their world using the skills of an archaeologist. Discover the sophisticated society that developed in Mayan communities, have a go at facial reconstructions and see what the Mayans would have looked like, or try your hand at experimental archaeology to experience Mayan life.

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MSP1

Who’s Who in the Mayan World?

During this session students will come face to face with artefacts of the Mayan world. Using archaeological techniques they will discover the depth and complexity of the Mayan social structure, from the farmers who worked in the fields and harvested the chocolate pods, to the kings who ruled from their temple cities. Together they will discover what life was like for those living in cities, such as Chichen Itza.

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MEX1

Mayan Facial Reconstruction

The Mayans had a very different idea of what made a person beautiful to our modern day British standards. During this session find out what a typical Mayan person would have looked like by creating a facial reconstruction model.

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MEX2

Mayan Pottery

Pottery was a major form of art in the Mayan world, as well as a practical object. It would have been used in homes, ceremonies, palaces and to decorate public spaces. In this session discover the patterns and fashions popular to the Mayans and have a go at experimental archaeology by creating Mayan Pottery.

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MEX3

Mayan Food and Hot Chocolate

Experimental archaeology is a powerful way to investigate the past. In this session discover the types of foods cooked by the Mayans, follow a traditional Mayan hot chocolate recipe and experience a taste of the past.

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MEX4

Pok-A-Tok

Pok-A-Tok was one of the most popular games in the Mayan world. Have a go at playing this ancient game in your playground or hall and hear traditional stories that give archaeologists clues as to how important the game was to the people of Mayan communities.