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Table of Contents
See the fact file below for more information on the Easter Island or alternatively, you can download our 22 page Easter Island worksheet pack to utilise within the classroom or home environment.
History of Easter Island:
- Scientific evidence points to the southwestern portion of the island at Ahu Tahai as an early place of habitation for many settlers, likely around AD 690.
- According to various sources of evidence, Easter Islanders are close relatives of the Mangarevans, who were people that inhabited the Gambier Islands in French Polynesia.
- This means that Easter Islanders are classed as South-East Polynesians.
- The south coast of Easter Island was colonized around the 1300s.
- By about 1500, evidence shows that Easter Island became isolated, with carving and transport coming to a halt; water resources dried up, and the population shrunk by half.
- By the 1600s, issues of control over the island between small confederations led to lawlessness, destruction, and fighting.
- On April 5, 1722, the Dutch navigator Jacob Roggeveen became the first known European to make contact with the island.
- Nearly 50 years later, two Spanish ships under the command of Captain Don Felipe Gonzalez de Ahedo made contact with the island, and 4 years after this, James Cook visited.
- Easter Island dealt with some seriously devastating events during the late 1800s, including visits from Peruvian slave raiders, violent abductions, a smallpox outbreak, and the introduction of tuberculosis; these events wiped out over 97% of the population in less than a decade, and a severe culture loss.
Geography of Easter Island:
- The closest inhabited neighbor of Easter Island are the Chilean Juan Fernandez Islands, which are located just over 1,000 miles east of Easter Island, where there are about 850 inhabitants.
- Easter Island measures just over 15 miles long, and has a triangular shape, with its widest point only 7.6 miles wide.
- Its triangular shape is due to the presence of three coalesced volcanoes; Terevaka, Poike, and Rano.
- Easter Island has a tropical rainforest climate, bordering on a humid subtropical climate; with its warmest months being November, December, and January.
- Easter Island has very mild winters, and its rainiest month is May.
- Cyclones and hurricanes do not occur around Easter Island due to its proximity to the South Pacific High, a subtropical anticyclone area located in the southeast Pacific Ocean.
- Paleobotanical studies of the island indicate that it was once a flourishing forest filled with trees, grasses, shrubs, and large palms.
- Many settlers used the now-extinct Paschalococos disperta palm tree to make settlements, which is why they’re extinct today.
- Easter Islanders cultivate crops such as bananas, sugarcane, and sweet potatoes as sustenance.
- Easter Island is home to some bird species, such as the Tavake (tropical bird) and the Makohe. Lobster, tuna, boxfish, and butterfly fish all exist around Easter Island.
Culture of Easter Island:
- Easter Island is a place full of puzzling myths and interesting, beautiful stonework.
- Easter Island’s famous statues (also known as “Easter Island heads”) were carved between 1100-1680 AD and were carved from compressed solidified volcanic ash.
- The statues are said to have been made from the use of stone hand chisels, which were sharpened by chipping off edges when the old ones dulled.
- The statues were likely moved and positioned using a sledge with crossed pieces and pulled with ropes.
- It would have taken around 180-250 men to pull and erect the statues.
- Not all of the statues were positioned – some were excavated and restored throughout the 20th century.
- Archaeologists think that the statues were symbols of authority and power; however, they were actually repositories of magical spirits.
- Some say that because the statues face toward the village, they were erected to watch over the villagers.
- Easter Islanders used stone in pretty much everything they built.
- Easter Island has one of the richest collections of petroglyphs (pictures carved into rock) in Polynesia, with more than 4,000 petroglyphs catalogued.
- The abundance of caves on the island suggest that they were important spaces used for planting, hunting, and carving.
- The language on the island is Rapa Nui.
Easter Island Worksheets
This is a fantastic bundle which includes everything you need to know about the world heritage site Easter Island across 22 wonderful pages. These are ready-to-use Easter Island worksheets that are perfect for teaching students about Easter Island which is a Polynesian island famous for its 887 “moai” statues, is located in the southeastern Pacific Ocean and is technically a Chilean island. It was made a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1995, and it is also one of the most remote inhabited islands in the world.
Complete List Of Included Worksheets
- Easter Island Facts.
- The Sweet Potato Mystery.
- Easter Island Quiz.
- Understanding the Island.
- Easter Island Crossword.
- Unscrambling Activity.
- Myths on Easter Island.
- Heavy Heads.
- Words Within Words.
- Easter Island Wordsearch.
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Link will appear as Easter Island Facts & Worksheets: https://kidskonnect.com - KidsKonnect, March 29, 2018
Use With Any Curriculum
These worksheets have been specifically designed for use with any international curriculum. You can use these worksheets as-is, or edit them using Google Slides to make them more specific to your own student ability levels and curriculum standards.