Teacher's Guide for CALLIOPE: The Tang Dynasty
Teacher guide prepared by: Celestine Smith Candida.
Students will use the issue to complete the activities on the Tang Dynasty.
- Read the article titled "Chang'an - The Capital City" to answer the following questions.
- What Asian kingdoms patterned their cities after the plan of Chang'an?
- Why did the plan of Chang'an resemble a checkerboard?
- Workers used the ancient Chinese technique of hangtu the walls. What was
- Who was the chief planner of Chang'an?
- Read the article titled "China's Only Ruling Empress" to answer the
- Why did Emperor Gaozong make Wu Zhao his chief wife?
- How did she strengthen her control?
- What changes did she make as ruler of the Zhou dynasty?
- Make copies of the photographs in the article "The World and the Next: A
Princely Tomb" to use as story starters.
- After reading the article "The Brilliant Emperor" make a chart comparing
the reigns of Empress Wu and her grandson Xuanzong. Any differences or similarities?
- The article "When Exams Define Success" discussed how the Tang Dynasty
developed exams to recruit candidates for government appointments. The most prestigious exam was called the jinshi, or "presented scholar." The exams focused on literary skills and composing poetry. Create a series of jobs for your students, and a jinshi for them to take in order to get a job.
- Answer the following questions after reading the article "Life in Cities Along the Grand Canal."
- What was the Grand Canal?
- What cities does the canal connect?
- Why was the canal system important?
- Who used the canals?
- What was life like for the cities along the Grand Canal?
- Read and discuss the poem "The Everlasting Sorrow," by Bay Juyi, on pages
28-31. Then have students illustrate the poem.
- Polo was the favorite sport during the Tang Dynasty. Men and women both played the game, and poems were even written by poets Han Yu and Wang Jian. After reading the article "In Pursuit of the 'Divine Bead'" do the following activities:
- Compare polo during the Tang Dynasty with polo today.
- Write a poem about polo.
- Use the entire issue to create an illustrated time line of the Tang Dynasty.