1.2 Hunter-gatherers

1. The Age of Hunters and Farmers
1.2 Hunter-gatherers

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Slide 1: Tekstslide
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In deze les zitten 17 slides, met interactieve quizzen en tekstslides.

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1. The Age of Hunters and Farmers
1.2 Hunter-gatherers

Slide 1 - Tekstslide

Which Age are we studying in this Unit?

Slide 2 - Tekstslide

What is this lesson about?
Hunter-gatherers hunted wild animals and collected edible things from nature. We use cave paintings and other sources to study how these people lived. In prehistory, man did not write things down. Prehistory means: before writing.

Slide 3 - Tekstslide

What you will learn in 
this lesson
  • what are hunter-gatherers?
  • what are sources?
  • why are sources important to learn about prehistoric people?
  • why did hunter-gatherers live in small groups?
  • why did hunter-hatherers have only few belongings?
  • how did hunter-gatherers adapt to the climate?

Slide 4 - Tekstslide

Word Duty

Cave paintings: paintings made in caves by prehistoric humans

Prehistory: time in history before people could read and write

Sources: remains from the past

Hunting-gathering: a way of living where people hunt animals and gather food like plants and berries to survive

Nomads: people who do not live in a fixed place


Slide 5 - Tekstslide

Timeline of this module

Slide 6 - Tekstslide


Did you bring your bow and arrow? Did you hunt wild horses today to get lunch? Probably not. But 15,000 years ago this was the normal way to live. In prehistoric times, people lived as hunter-gatherers and had to survive in nature. Let us see what life was like in prehistory.

Slide 7 - Tekstslide

The cave paintings of Lascaux

Click the green hotspot to go to an article about this amazing discovery
Prehistoric cave paintings from Lascaux (10,000 - 17,500 years old).

The cave paintings of Lascaux were discovered by two boys on Sept 12, 1940. Modern time illustration.

Marcel Ravidat, second from left, at the Lascaux cave entrance in 1940

Slide 8 - Tekstslide

"The cave paintings of Lascaux ". 

Drag the missing words to the correct place in the textbox.

bow and arrow
cave paintings

Slide 9 - Sleepvraag


The paintings in the cave of Lascaux can teach us a lot about the way of life in prehistoric times. When we talk about prehistory we mean the time before people were able to write. Everything we know about prehistory comes from findings discovered by archaeologists and palaeontologists. We call these findings sources. Sources give us information about a certain time.
There are two different kinds of sources that historians use to gather information about the past. These are written and physical (or unwritten) sources.
We don’t have written sources from prehistoric times. The hunters gatherers communicated by talking and by making drawings, not by writing. But they did leave us flint tools and remains of houses and bones. Our knowledge depends on the sources that archaeologists and historians are able to find. A lot has got lost over time, but there are still many objects hidden in the ground.
Written sources are text sources. The information that a historian gets from the source is written (in any language or on any material).
The written source in the picture is a clay tablet with cuneiform inscriptions. It is the oldest form of writing in history, dating back to 3200 BC.

human remains belong to the category of unwritten sources. 

Some words in Dutch and English are almost the same; like prehistory and ‘prehistorie’. That is because both languages use words from Latin. In this case, ‘pre’ which means before.

Slide 10 - Tekstslide

sources are important because they give us:
a narrative

Slide 11 - Quizvraag


When we look at the cave paintings we can see drawings of animals that lived in the Lascaux area in prehistoric times. Most scientists agree that these wild animals were hunted by men. The hunters killed the bulls and horses with spears or bows and arrows. They also fished in the rivers or at the coast. Women stayed near their small houses to take care of the children or they went out to gather berries, nuts, mushrooms and other things to eat. This way of living is called hunting-gathering.
Most scientists think that hunter-gatherers made the cave paintings to ask help from their gods. Many hunter-gatherers that live today have a shaman, or a medicine man. Those people believe that he or she can practice magic and have contact with the gods. In this way they can pray that the hunt went well.
The hunter-gatherers lived in groups of about 20 to 50 people that consisted of just a couple of families. These groups didn’t always stay in the same place. It simply wasn’t possible because they had to follow the animals they hunted. When there was nothing to eat, they picked up their tents and few belongings and moved to a different place to live. People who do not live in a fixed place are called nomads.
This is how a group of hunter-gatherers might have lived during prehistory (present-day drawing).

Even in our modern time, some people are still hunter-gatherers. For example, Indian tribes in the Amazon, the San in Africa and the aboriginals in Australia.

Slide 12 - Tekstslide

Complete the sentences by making the correct combinations
1. The hunter-gatherers moved around, 

2. The men hunted animals 

3. The women gathered berries, nuts, mushrooms 

4. They lived in small 

5. They had to adapt 

groups of 20-50 people.
and other edible things.
they did not live in one place.
to their surroundings.
or went fishing.

Slide 13 - Sleepvraag

To travel with few belongings

Before the new Hanze railway in Overijssel was built, archaeologists excavated the area. They found traces of prehistoric campsites on several sites. The oldest were 6,000 years old. The hunter-gatherers who made the campsites left remains of it and these have now become a source of information. Hunter-gatherers didn’t have a lot of possessions. They couldn’t carry many belongings with them as this would have been just too heavy. Instead they used everything that they found in nature or took from animals and left behind what they didn’t need any more.
The objects that were found in Overijssel help us to understand how these people cut down trees or how they managed to kill animals. After animals were killed, the people used their hides to make blankets and clothing. They needed clothing because they had to adapt to the climate they travelled to. In cold areas, like in the Netherlands, the people wore thick clothes made of fur and hides. In warmer regions, like Africa or the Middle East, the hunter-gatherers wore fewer or almost no clothes.
These prehistoric objects are made from bone and antlers. Such organic tools are rarer than stone tools from prehistory (9000 - 3000 BC).

Flint tools found near Hattemerbroek. You can see how these tools were produced, some pieces still fit together (6000 - 2000 BC).

Slide 14 - Tekstslide

Why do archaeologists find only very few remains of prehistoric hunter-gatherers?
the remains are all decayed over thousands of years
archaeologists are more interested in written sources
hunter-gatherers only had few possessions
remains of hunter-gatherers are too deep in the ground to be found

Slide 15 - Quizvraag

Write down one question about something from this lesson that you find difficult.

Slide 16 - Open vraag


Slide 17 - Tekstslide