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Parks Title

Lesson Three: Ancient Civilizations Engineering and Technology

Lesson Objectives
Upon completing the lesson students will:

  1. Explain how aqueducts work and at least three reasons why they were important to city planning in Roman times.
  2. Identify advancements in construction made by Ancient Romans with their creation and use of concrete. They will be able to explain at least two advantages of using concrete in construction of Roman cities.
  3. List at least three ways both aqueducts and concrete are still being used today.

Time Required
One class period (45-60 minutes)

Materials Needed
PowerPoint and Notes
Siphon Handout and Answer Key
Inverted Siphon Video

1. Discussion begins with a think-pair-share on the word legacy. Teacher will ask students to think about what they think that word means. Then they will be asked to pair up with their neighbors and share and compare their definitions. After a minute or two the teacher will ask the students to share their ideas on what a legacy is--following the brief discussion the teacher will display the actual definition on the PowerPoint and see how it compares to what the students came up with. Teacher then asks the students how they think "legacy" would apply to something like art and architecture.

2. Lecture/PowerPoint begins. Roman advancements in construction with the usage and creation of concrete are discussed. Images shown include Roman use and creation of concrete which are then compared and contrasted to a more modern application of the same material at Hearst Castle. Students will see how the Romans helped perfect a building material that is still popularly used in modern times.

3. (A brief ASSESSMENT is built into this part of the lesson) The second portion of the lesson/PowerPoint on aqueducts is done using a "Choose Your Own Adventure" format. The students are tasked with figuring out how to get clean, potable water to a fictitious city in Ancient Rome. Within each chapter the students are asked to solve a particular problem regarding the water supply to the city. They are given two solutions to choose from. Using the slides the teacher can choose which solution the students think works best. If it is the correct solution the story continues. If it is the incorrect solution the story comes to a tragic end. Following each chapter the teacher should hold a brief discussion on what makes their answer wrong or right.

After viewing a short video on how inverted siphons work the students will each be given a handout featuring a blank landscape. They will be asked to draw in the various features of an aqueduct in the appropriate places and idenitfy what material(s) they would use to build the aqueduct. The teacher will give the students 5 minutes to complete the aqueduct and then will show the answer on the answer slide in the PowerPoint and discuss why each feature is where it is and why concrete is the proper material.