The Aztec: Religion and daily Life

The Aztec: Religion and daily Life

I can describe the daily life and religion of the Aztec civilization.

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The Aztec: Religion and daily Life

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Students learn about the daily life and religion of the Aztec civilization, including the different social classes and their belief in Huitzilopochtli, the god of the sun and war. They will also learn about the clothing/dress and education that took place in the Aztec civilization. Additionally, they will locate the Aztec empire on a map and be introduced to the great city of Tenochtitlan. The lesson includes a video and plenty of engaging discussions with students!



Learning objective

Students will be able to map and describe the Aztec civilization including daily life and religious beliefs.


Show students a picture on the interactive whiteboard. Ask students to think about what they can tell about the Aztecs simply by looking at the picture. Introduce the Aztec to the students. Explain that the Aztec civilization was founded after the Maya and Incas. They were fierce warriors who fought to dominate their land. Explain that it is important to learn about the Aztecs because we still use Aztec customs in modern life. They were very independent and were the first society that required education for all its children.


Use the map to show students where the Aztecs lived in modern-day Mexico. Have students use the compass to describe where the Aztec people lived. Show the students an image of Tenochtitlan and ask them to think of possible advantages and disadvantages to living in a city that looked like this. Tell more about the city of Tenochtitlan and explain that the Aztec built causeways and floating gardens to increase arable land. The city also served as a great market where the Aztec traded a wide variety of goods. The Aztec people had a hierarchical structure and their daily lives depended on where they were on the social scale. Tell more about the kinds of clothing that were worn by the different classes and show the various images. Display the next two images and have students discuss what they see. Next, tell students about education in the Aztec civilization. Ask students to reflect on the differences between education for boys and girls. Tell students about the Aztec religion and explain what a polytheistic religion is. They had two very important gods, namely the god of war and the sun, and the god of rain. They believed that they could keep their gods happy by doing certain things, and making certain offerings to the gods. Some of those offerings were also sacrifices of animals or humans to ask the gods to forgive them for whatever they did wrong.


Students are asked a set of true or false questions to check key concepts taught during the lesson. Next they are given a set of multiple-choice questions that cover Aztec daily life and religion.


Ask students to make a drawing of an Ancient Aztec who might be walking around in the great market of Tenochtitlan. Ask students to share with a partner or with the whole class. Then have them spin the wheel to determine which kind of Aztec they must write about and have them imagine a day in their life.

Teaching tips

Some students may already know more about the human sacrifice portion of the Aztec (thanks to movies, etc.) and it can be quite gruesome and or shocking to students who are unaware of this. It is important to help explain to students why they have to learn about something so confronting. By learning about human history, we are given the choice of what to do in the future.

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