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Alexander the Great Interactive Activities

written by: Noreen Gunnell • edited by: Elizabeth Wistrom • updated: 9/11/2012

Alexander the Great is one of the best known figures in history. He had a short but influential life. Before his death at 33, Alexander conquered the known world and altered history forever. Use these Alexander the Great interactive activities to help your students learn about this legend.

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    Opportunities for engaging activities for middle and high school students can be found in the life and conquests of Alexander the Great. Interactive activities such as those outlined below will promote learning in geography, history, map skills, and English.

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    The following Alexander the Great interactive activities begin with a map of Alexander’s conquests. You may already have one which you prefer to use but, if not, there is an interactive map available at McGraw Hill’s Online Learning Center After watching the animation, students can print the map. Free, blank maps of Alexander’s empire are also available at D-Maps.com. (See Resources below.)

    It will also be necessary to have a modern map available for reference as it is much more relateable for students (honestly, for me too!) NationMaster.com is a great site for this. A map of the Middle East can be found at, and one of Asia at Clicking on “Show Map Full Screen" will bring students to interactive and printable outline maps. According to NationMaster’s Terms of Use, it is fine to copy and distribute maps for classroom use.

    Macedonian Empire under Alexander the Great 

    Alexander the Great Interactive Activities

    Grade Level: 9-12

    Materials Needed: Internet Access, Outline Maps of Modern Day Middle East and Asia (see above), Conquests of Alexander the Great Map. Power-Point or other Slide-Show Software, OR Photo Editing Software.

    Prior Knowledge: Some basic knowledge about Alexander the Great's Conquests.

    Lesson Outline: Activity 1- The Kalash

    Have the students:

    • Watch this video clip from the PBS documentary In the Footsteps of Alexander the Great:

    http://wn.com/bbc_documentary__in_the_footsteps_of_alexander_the_great_the_kalash_23

    • Mark the approximate location of where the Kalash live on their outline map of Asia. They should also try to locate this area on the map of Alexander's Conquests.
    • Each student should create a slide-show or collage explaining what Dionysus meant to Alexander and how the Kalash were able to connect with him through Dionysus worship. The slide-show or collage should contain pictures and some text. A description or definition of Dionysus should be included in one of the slides or on the collage.

    Grade Level: 7-12

    Materials Needed: Internet Access, Photo Editing Software or Drawing Supplies, Conquests of Alexander the Great Map as a reference.

    Prior Knowledge: Basic understanding of the extent of Alexander the Great's Empire

    Lesson Outline: Activities 2-4 - Places Alexander StoppedTemple of Apollo at Didyma 

    Have the students:

    • Pretend they are a soldier in Alexander’s army, or a citizen of Tyre during the siege. Students should write a letter to a friend explaining the situation from the point of view of their chosen persona. They should include whether or not they approve of Alexander’s tactics and why they believe taking the island was so important to Alexander. For example, was it because Tyre was of strategic importance, or did Alexander feel it was necessary to squash all resistance?
    • Create a travel guide detailing some of the better known sites Alexander visited during his conquests. (i.e., Achilles's tomb in Troy, Gates of Asia, Temple of Apollo at Didyma, Gordian Knot, Oracle at Siwa, Babylon) For some locations, the students may have to create their own images.
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    References and Image Credits

    Resources:

    McGraw-Hill http://highered.mcgraw-hill.com/sites/0072424370/student_view0/animated_maps.html#

    D-Maps http://d-maps.com/conditions.php?lang=en

    Nation Master http://www.nationmaster.com/region/MID and http://www.nationmaster.com/region/ASI#.

    References:

    http://www.hindukushtrails.com/tribes/kalash.asp

    Wood, Michael. In the Footsteps of Alexander the Great. (University of California Press, 1997).

    Images:

    http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:MacedonEmpire.jpg

    http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Didim_RB11.jpg