This month, Hands-on-Books features Sherry Ellis, who not only writes for kids, but is a gifted violinist. Welcome back!
When Bubba and Squirt travel through the magic portal, they
find themselves at Altun Ha, an ancient Mayan civilization in Belize. Today,
Altun Ha is an active archaeological site. Over three hundred jade objects have
been found there, including an ornately carved head of the Mayan sun go, Kinich
Ahua. The head weighs about ten pounds and is believed to be the largest Mayan
jade carving in existence.
In addition to their impressive carvings and architecture, the Mayans were famous for their Mayan Calendar which was based on the movement of the starts, moon, and sun.
You may have heard of constellations—groups of stars that form recognizable patterns in the night sky. When the ancient Mayans studied the stars, they saw the same patterns that you and I see today. You can try making these patterns using mini marshmallows and toothpicks. Here’s how:
Materials:· Bag of mini marshmallows
· Diagrams of your favorite constellations
· Paper and pencils
1. Draw the constellation you will create. Use a constellation diagram as a guide. (Black construction paper and white pencils look nice if you have them.)
2. Use dots for the stars and lines to form the constellation’s shape.
3. Construct the constellation using marshmallows for the stars and toothpicks for the lines. You may need to break some of the toothpicks to make them shorter.
When you’re done, put your marshmallows in a cup of hot cocoa. Archeologists have found evidence that wealthy Mayans enjoyed this drink more than 2000 years ago! You can pretend you’re an ancient Mayan when you sip this tasty treat!
For more fun activities, go here.
Sherry Ellis is an award-winning author and professional musician who plays and teaches the violin, viola, and piano. Ellis has previously published Bubba and Squirt’s Big Dig to China; Don’t Feed the Elephant; Ten Zany Birds; That Mama is a Grouch; and That Baby Woke Me Up, AGAIN. When she is not writing or engaged in musical activities, she can be found doing household chores, hiking, or exploring the world. She lives in Atlanta, Georgia.