Inca Empire: Geography, government, daily life

Inca Empire: Geography, government, daily life

I can describe the geography, government, and daily life of the Incas.

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Inca Empire: Geography, government, daily life

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In this lesson, students learn about the Inca civilization, specifically their religious beliefs and daily life, and locate it on a map.

Learning Objective

Students will be able to describe several aspects of the Inca civilization, including their terrace farming system and social classes.


First, have students observe the picture on the board. What can they infer about the Inca Civilization from looking at the image? Then introduce the Inca civilization and explain why it is important to learn about them. Show students the map of the Inca Empire and have them use the compass to describe where they lived.


Tell students that the Inca lived in the Andes Mountains. Ask students how they think living in the mountains may have impacted their daily life. Explain that the Inca had to come up with a system of farming to be able to farm in the mountainous area. They also built canals to irrigate their fields and bring water into the cities. Next, have students look at the map and use the compass to fill in the blanks. They should also list the countries where the Incas lived. Describe what the Incas ate and explain how they stored and dried food. Have students watch the video about the staple Inca crop, corn. Then engage in discussion about what they learned from the video. After this, describe the social classes with the Sapa Inca at the top and down to the commoners. Students observe the images on the board and make observations. Have students identify the people being portrayed in the images. Finally, explain the importance of religion for the Inca including Inti, their most important god, the god of the sun.


Check student understanding with ten multiple-choice, true or false, and fill-in questions.


Students write a journal entry from the perspective of an Inca. Spin the wheel to determine from which social class they will write. They will also draw a picture to show what the land looked like.

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