Let’s begin our online journey to the pyramids of Egypt. Gather your expedition party, bring a few snacks, and log on to the Internet.
A simple Google search will bring up a multitude of websites regarding the pyramids. With so many choices, you can afford to be selective in the pages you decide to visit. Look for sites posted by associations with reputations for education, such as museums and science magazines. If a website’s material seems thrown together haphazardly, giving a first impression of confusion, move onto another site. If you are a little choosy in the pages you visit, it will make your virtual journey that much more rewarding.
I’ve gathered together some of my favorite websites about the pyramids of Egypt. They contain a lot of information on the topic, so feel free to break the field trip up into as many visits as necessary. One of the best things about online travel is that it always works around your schedule!
Getting Started: A Site for Junior Explorers
Ancient Egypt is a great topic to explore with young children because it really captures their imaginations. A virtual trip to the pyramids, with their color and mystery, is a fantastic way to open young minds to the idea that history can be fun. I’d recommend the following site for children between 8 and 12 years old.
- National Museums Scotland: Egyptian Tomb Adventure. The information in this website is delivered as a fun interactive game in which you solve a series of simple but entertaining puzzles involving maps and hieroglyphs. This will lead you inside the tomb of a pyramid, where you will learn about the Egyptian gods, tomb artifacts, and a mummy. At the end of the quest you’ll receive a printable certificate of completion.
Let the Expedition Begin:
The following websites are ideal for middle school and high school kids. Adults should enjoy these websites, as well. They offer solid educational content along with interactive and multimedia features. They are presented in an appealing way, with respect for the awe and scope of the subject. There is a lot of information here that would be perfect for book reports or PowerPoint presentations.
- NOVA: Online Pyramid Adventure. This clearly written and well designed site by PBS features the educational material of an episode of NOVA presented in the format of an interactive website. The Online Pyramid Adventure includes clickable diagrams of four major pyramids and a high resolution gallery where you can examine 360 degree views of burial chambers and passage ways – some of which are closed to the public and can only be seen on this site!
- Discovering Ancient Egypt: The Pyramids & Temples of Egypt. Created by digital art director and Egyptology enthusiast Mark Millmore, this site showcases its webmaster’s 30-year obsession with both ancient Egyptian culture and online design. Visiting this site is like entering a treasure trove of artifacts, yet their presentation is clear and never overwhelming. The Pyramids and Temples page offers computer-generated reconstructions of what these structures, most likely, looked like when they were originally made. The page also includes interactive ground plan maps of both pyramids and temples. Click on the maps to bring up articles, photos, and drawings from Millmore’s actual visits to these ancient monuments.
- National Geographic: Explore the Pyramids. From the Step Pyramid of Djoser (Egypt’s first pyramid) to the Great Pyramid of Giza (Earth’s largest pyramid), National Geographic’s informative site allows you to visit eight different pyramids by clicking their images in order to gain access to pictures, diagrams, and important facts about these structures. The site also provides a timeline spanning almost 6000 years – from 5500 B.C. to 395 A.D. – allowing us to easily put the construction of the pyramids into historical context.
- King Tut One: The Pyramids. For nearly 10 years KingTutOne.com has served as an online resource center for ancient Egyptian content geared to children of various ages. In addition to an introduction to the pyramids, this site’s homepage provides information on mummies, Pharaohs, Egyptian gods, temples, and King Tut. Also, there are pages where you can download Egyptian clipart and send Egyptian themed E-cards. For younger children there is a page for Egyptian-based activities and for older kids there is a chat forum on the topic of ancient Egypt.
Taking it to the Next Level…
In the event that your virtual field trip to the pyramids has not satisfied your thirst for knowledge on the subject, there are even more websites available on the pyramids. The following links offer in-depth, scholarly content that is most appropriate for college students, brainy high school seniors, and parents who would like to delve deeper into the fascinating world of Ancient Egypt. Time to dismiss the kiddies – adult school is in!
- Fathom: The World of the Pyramids. Fathom, a consortium of first-rate academic and cultural associations, developed this site to offer free seminars, interviews, and articles regarding ancient Egypt. This webpage offers detailed information about dynastic art, architecture, society, and religion – all developed by leading researchers, curators, and scholars in the field.
- Theban Mapping Project. This is an extraordinary site created by the Theban Mapping Project (TMP) which is based at the American University in Cairo. Since 1978, TMP has been working to create a complete archaeological database of the ancient tombs and temples of Thebes, Egypt. Much of this data is available on the website, which includes a photo data base of over 8000 images and an atlas of the Valley of the Kings which features 65 narrated tours by Dr. Kent Weeks, a leading professor of Egyptology and Egyptian Archeology.