Wednesday, December 30, 2015

World's oldest playable Bone Flute found in China- English lesson

 The world's most ancient playable flutes have been found in Henan China.  They been dated to between 7000 to 9000 years old, and they can still make music.  Six complete wing bone flutes carved from cranes have been found and parts of 30 others were also found.

You can hear a sample of one of the flutes here:

There are flutes with different number of holes, the one with 7 holes plays a scale that is similar to the Modern Scale of C or Do.

These flutes give an insight of the sound of music 9000 years ago.

This archaeological site was discovered in 1962, but has only recently been excavated. Researchers have found the flutes plus many other artifacts that tell us about life in ancient China.  Jiahu lies in the Central Yellow River Valley in mid-Henan Province and was inhabited from 7000 BC to 5700 BC. The site was discovered by Zhu Zhi, late director of the Wuyang County Museum, in 1962.

Only 5% of the site has been worked on with more digs scheduled for the future.

For more information go here:

wing bone
Modern scale
archaeological  site

playable say l
ancient An chent
flute say l clearly
artifacts R ti facts
scheduled ske juled
archaeologica R ke o log gi kal
Modern - hear the r
excavate  - X i vate
site - long i


Where were the flutes found?
How old were the flutes?
What is unusual about that?
What are the flutes made from?
Listen to the sound sample.  What does the sound remind you of?
When was the site discovered?
Why do you think they found the flutes only now?
What information can we find out about Ancient China from this site?
Have you ever been to an archaeological site?
What did you see there?
Which musical instrument do you play?
How long have you played it?
How long did it take you to learn to play your instrument?
Have you ever tried to play a simple flute? If not, would you want to?
Was it difficult for you?

Summary and Lesson Plan by Rachael Alice Orbach - English teacher

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