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Mesopotamian Monuments is a live, virtual field trip for middle school students to investigate monuments from Sumer, Babylonia and Assyria on display in the Harvard Museum of the Ancient Near East. Guided by a museum educator using a 3D model of the museum and embedded 360 degree images, students observe and analyze sculptures from a classroom or their homes to understand the characteristics of these three ancient river civilizations.The lively program highlights the Sumerian ruler Gudea, Hammurabi of Babylon and the Assyrian king Ashurnasirpal II.

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About This Program


Point to Point: $150.00
Point to Point Premium: $150.00

Groups may be eligible for a fee reduction based upon the percent of students receiving free and reduced lunch. Call for an exact price quote.


60 minutes

Target Audience

Education: Grade(s) 5, 6, 7, 8

Minimum participants:


Maximum participants:


Primary Disciplines

Social Studies/History /Archaeology /Anthropology

Program Delivery Mode

Videoconference - H.323 (Polycom, Cisco/Tandberg, LifeSize, etc...)
Videoconference – Webcam/desktop (Zoom, Google Meet, Cisco WebEx, GoToMeeting, Microsoft Teams, etc...)

Booking Information

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Receive this program and 9 more for one low price when you purchase the CILC Virtual Expeditions package. Learn more

For more information contact CILC at (507) 388-3672

Provider's Cancellation Policy

Cancellations must be made 48 hours prior to the program's start time, otherwise the full fee is charged. There is no cancellation charge for programs cancelled due to weather.

About This Provider

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Harvard Museums of Science & Culture (HMSC)

Cambridge, MA
United States

The Harvard Museums of Science & Culture (HMSC) is a
partnership of four Harvard museums designed to coordinate captivating
programming for all ages, permanent galleries, and dynamic rotating
exhibits. HMSC invites you to connect with Harvard University's
distinctive collections and vital research on human civilizations,
biodiversity, and the history of Earth and science.

Peabody Museum of Archaeology & Ethnology:
From towering Native American totem poles and large Maya sculptures to precious artifacts of the ancient world, the Peabody Museum at Harvard University is among the oldest archaeological and ethnographic museums in the world with one of the finest collections of human cultural history found anywhere. The museum is a member of the Harvard Museums of Science and Culture (HMSC) consortium.

Harvard Museum of the Ancient Near East:
Journey from Egypt to Mesopotamia through galleries that showcase the history, languages, and cultures of the ancient Near East - the region that brought us the alphabet, the pyramids, and other wonders of the ancient world. The museum, founded in 1889, houses more than 40,000 ancient Near Easten artifacts, many from museum-sponsored excavations in Egypt, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Syria, and Tunisia. The Harvard Museum of the Ancient Near East uses these collections to investigate and teach Near Eastern archaeology, history, and culture. The museum is a member of the Harvard Museums of Science and Culture (HMSC) consortium.

Harvard Museum of Natural History:
The Harvard Museum of Natural History was established in
1998 as the public face of three research museums: the Museum of Comparative
Zoology, the Harvard University Herbaria, and the Mineralogical & Geological
Museum. Presenting these incomparable collections and the research of
scientists across the University, the Harvard Museum of Natural History’s
mission is to enhance public understanding and appreciation of the natural
world and the human place in it, sparking curiosity and a spirit of discovery
in people of all ages.

Collection of Historical Scientific Instruments:

The core mission of the Collection of Historical
Scientific Instruments is to preserve, document, and care for over 20,000
instruments portraying the history of science teaching and research at Harvard
from the Colonial period to the 21st century. Through its lively exhibit and
teaching programs, web presence, and increasing involvement in critical media
practices, the CHSI’s research activities and cultural initiatives intersect
and bring together a multiplicity of academic disciplines and areas of
professional museum expertise. The CHSI is both a specialized institution and
an experimental space, where Harvard Faculty and students, instrument scholars
and museum experts meet in the production of object-based knowledge.

Cathy Disanzo

Program Details


1. Introduction to archaeology, primary sources, Mesopotamia.
2. Analyze pairs of sculptures to learn about Sumeria & ruler Gudea; demonstration of cuneiform writing in clay
3. Analyze "Hammurabi's Code" monument to learn about Babylonia & ruler Hammurabi; locate the law of retribution (“an eye for an eye”) on the monument, deconstruct its cuneiform components, and hear it spoken it in ancient Akkadian.
4. Analyze Assyrian monuments or palace-wall reliefs to learn about Assyrian rulers.

Questions to the presenter may be asked throughout the program



Students will:

1. Understand what archaeology is and why it's important
2. Learn to view monuments as primary sources
3. Practice observation and analysis skills associated with artifacts
4. Be able to draw conclusions about the character of several ancient rulers based on an understanding of their monuments' imagery and text


Standards Alignment

National Standards

This Program is aligned to the following Common Core Standards:
English Language Arts Standards » History/Social Studies » Grade 6-8

Key Ideas and Details:
Determine the central ideas or information of a primary or secondary source

Craft and Structure:
Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including vocabulary specific to domains related to history/social studies.

Identify aspects of a text that reveal an author's point of view or purpose (e.g., loaded language, inclusion or avoidance of particular facts).

Integration of Knowledge and Ideas:
Integrate visual information (e.g., in charts, graphs, photographs, videos, or maps) with other information in print and digital texts.

Distinguish among fact, opinion, and reasoned judgment in a text.


State Standards

MA State Standards:

Grade 7
Ancient and Classical Civilizations in the Mediterranean
Students study the early civilizations that flourished in the Mediterranean area.

Mesopotamia: Site of Several Ancient River Civilizations, c. 3500-1200 BC

7.7 On a historical map, locate the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers and identify Sumer, Babylon,
and Assyria as successive civilizations and empires in this region. (H, G, E)

7.8 Identify polytheism (the belief that there are many gods) as the religious belief of the people in Mesopotamian civilizations. (H)

7.10 Describe the important achievements of Mesopotamian civilization. (H, C, E)
A. its system of writing (and its importance in record keeping and tax collection)
B. monumental architecture (the ziggurat)
C. art (large relief sculpture, mosaics, and cylinder seals)

7.11 Describe who Hammurabi was and explain the basic principle of justice in Hammurabi’s Code (“an eye for an eye”). (H, C, E)