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From India and China,
part of the ANCIENT CIVILIZATIONS SERIES.
© Frank Schaffer, Publisher.
The Indus Valley civilization disappeared about 1500 B.C. While no single cause seems to have
been responsible, climate, drought, intensive cultivation, changes in the course of the Indus
River, depleted soils, and erosion may all have contributed.
Some historians think the final blow to the civilization was dealt by nomads from Central Asia
who swept into India's northwest plains. Ravaging the country as they came, these nomads put an
end to a unique and sophisticated culture. The invaders called themselves Aryans.
Tell your class they have been hired to help the officials of Harappa make important additions
to their city. Have students work in small groups to compile a list of public spaces,
buildings, and systems that will improve living conditions in Harappa. Consider parks, sport
arenas, entertainment centers, transportation systems, and museums.
Discuss Archaeological Evidence
Discuss with your class the evidence that archaeologists and historians found that indicates
that the Indus Valley civilization practiced city planning. What evidence will archaeologists
discover about your city that will show it practiced city planning?
Make a Cause-Effect Chart
Lead discussion about some of the possible reasons for the demise of the Indus Valley
civilization. Then show the suggested causes, and have students supply the effect it would have
on the land or the people. Use the board or a large piece of paper to chart students'
suggestions, for example:
|Changes in the course of the Indus River
||The source of water might have disappeared.
||Inability to feed animals or grow crops
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without the prior written permission of the publisher. Reproduction of these materials for an
entire school or school system is strictly prohibited.