Mayan Civilization Ks2 Planning

Mayan Civilization KS2 Planning

Mayan Civilization KS2 Planning

The study of the Mayan civilization is an important aspect of history education for KS2 students. The Mayan civilization, which flourished in Mesoamerica from approximately 2000 BCE to 1500 CE, was one of the most advanced and sophisticated ancient civilizations. In this planning guide, we will provide an overview of the key topics and concepts related to teaching Mayan civilization to KS2 students.

1. Introduction to the Mayan Civilization

The first step in teaching Mayan civilization to KS2 students is to provide them with a solid understanding of its historical context. This includes introducing the geographical location of the Mayans, which spans modern-day Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, El Salvador, and Honduras. Students should also learn about the time period in which the Mayans lived and the major historical events that shaped their civilization.

Furthermore, it is crucial to highlight the important accomplishments and contributions of the Mayans. KS2 students should be introduced to the Mayan writing system, known as hieroglyphics, as well as their advanced mathematical and astronomical knowledge.

2. Daily Life of the Mayans

To engage KS2 students in the study of Mayan civilization, it is essential to explore the daily life of the Mayans. This topic provides insight into the social structure, roles, and responsibilities within Mayan society. Students can learn about the different social classes, such as priests, nobles, and farmers, as well as the gender roles and expectations that existed within Mayan society.

A fascinating aspect of Mayan daily life is the religious and spiritual beliefs of the Mayans. KS2 students can explore the various gods and goddesses worshipped by the Mayans and the rituals and ceremonies associated with their religious practices. Studying the Mayan calendar and the significance of astronomical events for the Mayans can also be included in this topic.

3. Mayan Achievements and Contributions

The Mayan civilization was renowned for its impressive achievements and contributions in various fields. KS2 students should be introduced to the advancements made by the Mayans in architecture, agriculture, art, and technology. Examples of Mayan achievements include the construction of elaborate stone cities, intricate artwork, and innovative farming techniques.

It is also important to highlight the intellectual and scientific accomplishments of the Mayans. KS2 students can explore the Mayan understanding of mathematics, including their numeral system and concept of zero. Additionally, the Mayans’ astronomical knowledge and their ability to accurately measure time through the use of calendars can be discussed.

4. Decline and Legacy of the Mayan Civilization

The study of the decline and legacy of the Mayan civilization provides an opportunity for KS2 students to develop their critical thinking skills. This topic explores the various theories and factors that contributed to the decline of the Mayan civilization, such as environmental changes, warfare, and political instability.

In addition, the legacy of the Mayans can be discussed. KS2 students can learn about the ways in which Mayan culture and traditions continue to influence Mesoamerican societies today. This can include the preservation of Mayan languages, the celebration of traditional festivals, and the recognition of Mayan art and architecture as world treasures.


The study of the Mayan civilization is essential for KS2 students to develop an understanding and appreciation of ancient civilizations. By providing a comprehensive planning guide, educators can effectively teach KS2 students about the key aspects of Mayan civilization while promoting critical thinking and curiosity about the past.

Clarence Norwood

Clarence E. Norwood is an author and scholar specializing in the history and archaeology of ancient peoples. He has written extensively on the civilizations of the Near East, Egypt, and the Mediterranean. He has authored numerous books and articles on a wide range of topics, including the evolution of the alphabet, the rise of the ancient nations, and the impact of ancient cultures and religions on modern society. He has also conducted archaeological field research in North Africa, the Middle East, and Europe.

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