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The Story of India

Lesson Plans

From ancient to modern times, India has played a central role in human history. The Story of India offers educational resources for teachers wanting to use the DVD and the rich content on this web site in their classrooms. The lessons have been designed for high school world history and Advanced Placement world history classes. However, they can be adapted for lower grades as needed.

Tamil Nadu

Lesson 1: Tracking Early Hinduism

In this lesson students explore the early history of Hinduism and create a scrapbook that highlights important gods, holy sites, and ancient texts.

Ashokan pillar and stupa at Kolhua

Lesson 2: An Edict on Ashoka

To honor the great achievements of Ashoka, students mimic the style of the Great Rock Edicts and write an edict memorializing one of Ashoka’s accomplishments. To follow up, students develop additional edicts that reflect the beliefs of Ashoka but apply to issues faced today.

Uru boat

Lesson 3: The Winds of Trade

This two-part lesson starts by putting students in the shoes of a Roman merchant in the state of Kerala trying to convince a business partner to join him in India. The second portion of the lesson has students evaluate the importance of trade in Indian history through the eyes of a contemporary historian examining the letter written in part one.

Jain symbols of the cosmos

Lesson 4: Monument to the Stars

To commemorate the achievements of the great mathematician and scientist, Aryabhatta, students create a monument for display at a fictional university.

Michael Wood with representatives from each of the major religions in India

Lesson 5: Akbar's Debate

Students explore Akbar's interest in the many religions of India by constructing a conversation between multiple religious leaders, moderated by Akbar himself, who attempt to find common ground among the faiths.

Records of the British Raj

Lesson 6: British Attitudes Towards India

The British perception of Indian culture was reflected in their policies and attitudes toward the people of India. This activity has students consider the British attitude and then respond to it from the perspective of an Indian living under British rule.

For younger kids, there are educational materials available at