Fireworks, Silk and the Great Wall – Class 4
Do you know that the Chinese civilization is one of the world's oldest civilization along with the civilizations of Egypt, Iraq and the Indus valley. The Chinese civilization started about 4,500 years ago.
The ancient Chinese has made great contributions to the mankind in the field of arts and science. They invented many things which we use still today.
Fireworks and Gunpowder
Some of their contributions are fireworks, gunpowder, paper, printing and silk.
Chinese uses fireworks for celebrating their festivals. They believed that the loud noise made by the fireworks would drive away the evil spirits.
They also invented gunpowder. They used it to prepare small bombs. It was also use to fire guns, cannons and rockets.
Paper and Printing
In ancient times, Chinese people used to write on bamboo strips or on silk.
But writing on bamboo strips was difficult as the bamboo was heavy. Also, not everyone could afford silk as it was costly.
Then they invented paper. It changed the way the Chinese people wrote. The paper was made from rags, bamboo fibres and the bark of the mulberry trees.
The Chinese also invented how to print on paper. Letters and other designs were carved on wooden block. These blocks were then used to print on paper.
Silk is obtained from silkworm. The Chinese invented the technique to obtain silk from silkworm. They were first in the world to do so.
They were also first in the world to make cloth from silk.
Silk was very valuable in ancient China. Common people were not allowed to use it. Only the king and people of high rank were allowed to wear clothes made from silk.
The Chinese know that there is great demand of silk around the world. For hundreds of years the Chinese were the only people who knew how to prepare silk.
The Chinese started trading silk with other countries in Asia and also in Europe. This made them very rich.
The road by which the silk traders travelled to these distant places became known as the Silk Road.
The Chinese also gave tea, kites, porcelain, the compass and the abacus to the world.
The Great Wall of China
Did you identify the picture given above. It is the Great Wall of China. It is considered one of the seven wonders of the world.
The Great Wall is one the longest man-made structures in the world. It took more than 1500 years to built it. Different parts of the wall were built by different kings.
The Great Wall was built to protect the Chinese kingdoms from foreign invaders. Soldiers, prisoners and even farmers took part in building the wall. Different kinds of building materials including stone, bricks and wood were used. It is one of the many amazing things that the ancient Chinese made.
Fireworks, Silk and the Great Wall
For Class 4
A. ANSWER THESE QUESTIONS.
1. How was the Great Wall of China built?
2. Why did the Chinese use fireworks during festivals?
3. Why was silk important for China?
4. On what did the Chinese write before paper came? Were these suitable?
5. How did the Chinese print?
B. TRUE OR FALSE.
1. The Great Wall of China was made in parts.
2. Gunpowder was used to fire rockets.
3. It is believed that silk was discovered by a Chinese cook.
4. Dishes and cups made of porcelain are often called china.
5. The invention of printing made it easy to make many copies of the same thing.