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Gardiner Museum

Ancient Americas

Ancient Americas

Available for education groups of all levels

School Program Theme:
Early Societies of the Ancient Americas

ZOTZ, BATZ, BALAM!
in some Mayan languages, Zotz means bat, Batz monkey, and Balam jaguar


The Gardiner Museum has wonderful collections of art from the Ancient Americas. The animals, human figures and vessels in our gallery demonstrate the ingenuity and skill of ancient potters working with earthenware clay.

This program offers students exciting evidence of early civilizations in Mexico, Central, and South America. Your students will have an opportunity to learn about the accomplishments of the Maya, the Inca and many other established civilizations that flourished before the arrival of Europeans. Students delve into what life was like for a Maya or Inca child living through the period when these ceramics where made.

These cultures are explored through slide presentations, handling objects, gallery talk, and a discussion with a Maya archaeologist.

This program is available as a half or full day option and is recommended for students in grades 4 through 6, and for those studying ancient civilizations or Spanish language at any level. It can be adapted to a variety of age levels including university anthropology and archaeology courses.

If you are studying another ancient civilization (e.g. Egypt or Greece) we can adapt the program so that your students create canopic jars or Greek vessels. Themes such as the afterlife are common to many ancient civilizations.


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Fund, Ministry of Tourism and Culture, Government of Ontario.