class 6 social science CBSE Notes

From Gathering to Growing Food – class 6 social science CBSE Notes,

From Gathering to Growing Food
The Beginning of Farming

The changes in the climatic conditions in the late Neolithic Age brought about changes in the lives of humans too in the following ways:
•    The changes in the environment resulted in changes in plants and animals. These changes were observed by humans.
•    Humans began to learn about places where edible plants could be found. They also noticed the way in which seeds led to the germination of new plants.
•    Once, people realised this process, they began to look after these plants by watering them and saving them from wild animals. It is in this  way that humans became farmers.
•    The planting of seed requires watering, weeding and driving animals away. Thus, humans had to stay in one place for a longer period of time.
•    The need to store grain and food resulted in the making of large clay pots and baskets. Humans also dug the earth to store grains.
•    Humans also noticed that certain animals were timid and they could be tamed by giving them food and shelter.
•    Dog was the first animal to be tamed by humans. Later, goats, sheep and cattle were also domesticated. Humans saved these animals from the attacks of other wild animals. In this way, humans became herders.

 

  
Domestication is a process in which humans grew plants and looked after animals. The process of domestication began about 12,000 years ago.  People selected those plants for domestication which yielded large sized grains and had a strong stalk. Wheat and barley were some of the earliest plants to be domesticated. Similarly, those animals which were timid and could not harm humans were domesticated. Gradually the domesticated plants and animals became different from the wild plants and animals.

 

 
Starting of a New Era
After learning to grow food grains, human beings realized the need for storing them as well. The grains were collected and stocked up for both food and seed. Large clay pots, woven baskets or dug pits were used by them for storage. 

 

 

Animal products like cows, goats and cattle were nurtured better than they used to give milk and meat as per their requirement. Milk was one of the major sources of food at that time. Plants and animal bones were recovered by the scientists which confirms the settlements of farmers and herders. One of the major sources for archaeologists was the remains of burnt grain.
 

 
Traces of huts and houses were also found by the archaeologists in different parts of the subcontinent.  Cooking hearths were found.
The stone tools belonging to the Neolithic age were different from that of tools of the Palaeolithic age. The tools of the Neolithic age were polished and given an accurate cutting edge. Some tools were made of bones that belonged to the Palaeolithic age.
In the beginning of the Neolithic age, earthen pots were discovered. People used to cook in these earthen pots. They also had leant to weave clothes at that time, like the major clothes that were used by the people of the Neolithic age was cotton.
A Settled Life
Archaeologists have found different types of huts and various houses in these places that show these people have had a sedentary life. Cooking Hearths were discovered both inside and outside the house, and archaeologists assume that they would cook wherever based on the weather condition. The tools found were excellent cut and well-polished which were made for people to hunt down animals and also for cutting up things. Different types of cooking utensils were also found like earthen pots which must have been kept for storing items or also as a decorative item.

 

 
 
Mehrgarh
This was one of the first places where people started to farm and grow crops on a proper scale. Different animals were also reared for the first time. Crops like barley and rice; animals grew were goats and sheep. Here people used to carry out rituals for people who died, and they used to bury goats with them. Lots of burial sites have been found at this place. The houses found here were in cubical shapes.

Evidences of First Farmers and Herders
 

 The following table shows the places in the Indian sub-continent where evidences of early domestication of plants and animals are discovered. The discovery of animal bones and burnt grains helped scientists to discover these places. Some of these places are:

 

 

Evidences of Tools, Houses and Pots
Many other evidences like the remains of houses and tools have helped us to identify the places where people lived and the activities they were engaged in.
 
Tools
•    The discovery of various stone tools has helped scientists to differentiate between the various periods of history.
•    In the Neolithic period, tools were polished and sharpened so as to have a fine cutting edge. They came to be used for grinding grains.

 
Pots
•    Many decorative and plain earthen pots have been discovered from different places. These pots were used for cooking food such as wheat, rice and lentils.
•    Pots were also used for storing food.


Huts

•    People lived in huts or houses. At Burzahom in Kashmir, evidences have been found of pit houses which were dug into the ground with steps leading up to them.
•    These pit houses provided shelter to the people against the cold weather.
•    Many cooking utensils have been found inside and outside the houses which indicate that people cooked food inside and outside their houses.

 

 
Tribes
Many farmers and herders lived together in groups called tribes. Following are the main characteristics of the tribes:
•    People living in tribes followed occupations such as hunting, gathering and farming.
•    Women did agricultural work such as sowing and harvesting.
•    Men led a large herd of animals in search of pastures. Men and women both wove baskets, tools and huts.
•    The young warriors or old and experienced people came to be regarded as leaders.
•    The people of the tribes regarded the forests, water and grasslands as sacred as these gave them food and shelter.

 

Mehrgarh
•    Mehrgarh is one of the earliest sites in the Indian subcontinent where people grew wheat and barley.
•    Archaeologists found the bones of sheep and goats in this area which indicates that people herded animals such as sheep and goats.
•    Remains of rectangular and square houses have been found in Mehrgarh. Each house had four or more rooms, some of which were used for storing grains.
•    Many burial sites have been found here. It is believed that people believed in life after death as in one of the burial sites, a person was buried with goats.
Daojali Hading
•    This site is located on the hills near the Brahmaputra Valley, close to the routes leading into China and Myanmar.
•    At this site, stone tools including mortars and pestles have been found showing that people here were aware of the process of growing grains.
•    Among the tools, a tool made out of jadeite has been found. This stone was perhaps brought from China.
•    In Daojali Hading, pottery and tools made out of fossil wood has been found. Fossil wood was the ancient wood which was hardened into stone.
•    We need to remember, that at this time while some people were becoming farmers and herders, many people were still hunters and gatherers
 
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Important Questions
    Multiple Choice Questions:
1.    Who has found the things obtained from excavation?
A.    Psychologist
B.    Archaeologist
C.    Doctor
D.    Teacher
2.    Mesolithic period falls:
A.    2 Million years ago to 12000 years ago
B.    12,000 years ago to 10,000 years ago
C.    From about 10,000 years ago
D.    None of these
3.    In which age were the tools polished to give a fine cutting edge?
A.    Palaeolithic Age
B.    Mesolithic Age
C.    Neolithic Age
D.    Microlithic Age
4.    Presently, the site’ Paiyampalli’ is situated at:
A.    Uttar Pradesh
B.    Bihar
C.    Kashmir
D.    Andhra Pradesh
5.    Square and rectangular houses were found in:
A.    Mehrgarh
B.    Chirand
C.    Burzahom
D.    Gufkral
6.    Mortar and pestles used for:
A.    Ploughing the field
B.    For fire
C.    As a hunting tool
D.    Grinding the grains
7.    What did tribes children do?
A.    Cleaning of animals and milking
B.    Sowing seeds
C.    Look after plants and driving away animals
D.    Making tools and huts
8.    Several burial sites have been found in:
A.    Mehrgarh
B.    Koldihwa
C.    Mahagara
D.    Chirand
9.    Archaeologist have found ‘Jadeite’ at the site Daojali Hading. What is ‘Jadeite’?
A.    A bone
B.    A stone
C.    A wooden piece
D.    An iron
10.    Why was the dead person buried with animals?
A.    For playing
B.    Serve as food in the next world
C.    Both (a) & (b
D.    None of the above
11.    Mehrgarh is in present day:
A.    Bihar
B.    Pakistan
C.    Kashmir
D.    Uttar Pradesh
12.    Meso means in Mesolithic age is:
A.    Micro
B.    Must
C.    Middle
D.    Macro
13.    _________ was the main occupation of people of the Chalcolithic age:
A.    Agriculture
B.    Mining
C.    Hunting
D.    Gathering
14.    Copper was discovered by ________ man.
A.    Masolilthic
B.    Neolithic
C.    Palaeolithic
D.    Halcolithic
15.    Microlith were made during which period:
A.    Chalcolithic
B.    Mesolithic
C.    Neolithic
D.    Palaeolithic
    Match The Following:

    Fill in the blanks:
1.    Millets have been found at __________.
2.    People in Burzahom lived in __________ houses.
3.    Chirand is a site in __________.
4.    _________ and __________ comes from animals that are reared.
5.    _________ is one of the earliest villages.
    Write true (T) or false (F):
1.    Jadeite, found in Daojali Hading, may have been brought from China.
2.    Young women are respected for their wisdom and experience.
3.    Mehrgarh site is in Pakistan.
4.    Bolan Pass is one of the most important routes into India.
5.    Gufkral site is in Kashmir.
    Very Short Questions:
1.    Name the place where Millet was grown in Neolithic Age.
2.    Name two sites found in Andhra Pradesh.
3.    Name two sites found in Kashmir.
4.    Why grains had to be stored?
5.    What is ‘jadeite,’?
6.    What ‘Fossil Wood’ refers to?
7.    Which two Neolithic tools are used to grind grain even today?
8.    Which was the first animal to be tamed?
9.    Which were the earliest plants to be domesticated?
10.    Which were the earliest animals to be domesticated?
11.    What do you understands by the term ‘Tribes’.
12.    Which historical events took place about 12,000 years ago?
13.    Which historical events took place about 8,000 years ago?
14.    In what ways grain was used by the early people?
15.    Why were people buried with animals, like goats?
    Short Questions:
1.    Write about the houses in Mehrgarh.
2.    Write about the cultural traditions of the tribal community.
3.    Why farmers grow some crops in some areas and not in other areas?
4.    Describe the pit houses found at Burzahom.    
5.    Name some important sites where archaeologists have found evidence of farmers and herders.
6.    Why do people who grow crops have to stay in the same place for a long time?
    Long Questions:
1.    Describe tools used by farmers and herders.
2.    How did people become herders?
3.    List three ways in which the lives of farmers and herders would have been different from that of hunter-gatherers?
4.    How did people become farmers?
5.    What were the different activities performed by people in tribal societies?
ANSWER KEY –
    Multiple Choice Questions:
1.    B. Archaeologist
2.    B. 12,000 years ago to 10,000 years ago
3.    C. Neolithic Age
4.    D. Andhra Pradesh
5.    A. Mehrgarh
6.    D. Grinding the grains
7.    C. Look after plants and driving away animals
8.    A. Mehrgarh
9.    B. A stone
10.    B. Serve as food in the next world
11.    B. Pakistan
12.    C. Middle
13.    A. Agriculture
14.    D. Chalcolithic
15.    B. Mesolithic
    Match The Following:

    Fill in the blanks:
1.    Hallur
2.    Pit
3.    Bihar
4.    Milk, Meat
5.    Mehrgarh
    Write true (T) or false (F):
1.    True
2.    False
3.    True
4.    False
5.    True
    Very Short Answer:
1.    Paiyampalli and Hallur.
2.    Hallur and Paiyampalli.
3.    Gufkral and Burzahom.
4.    Grain had to be stored for both food and seed.
5.    Jadeite is a stone that may have been brought from China.
6.    Fossil wood refers to ancient wood that has hardened into stone.
7.    Mortars and pestles are used for grinding grain.
8.    The first animal to be tamed was the wild ancestor of the dog.
9.    Some of the earliest plants to be domesticated were wheat and barley.
10.    The earliest domesticated animals include sheep and goat.
11.    Many of these farmers and herders live in groups called tribes.
12.    Beginnings of domestication took place about 12,000 years ago.
13.    Beginning of settlement at Mehrgarh took place about 8000 years ago.
14.    Grain was used by early people as seed, as food, as gifts and stored as food.
15.    The dead person was buried with goats, which were probably meant to serve as food in the next world.

    Short Answer:
1.    Finds at Mehrgarh includes remains of square or rectangular houses. Each house had four or more compartments, some of which may have been used for storage.
2.    Tribes have rich and unique cultural traditions, including their own language, music, stories and paintings. They also have their own gods and goddesses.
3.    Farmers grow some crops in some areas and not in other areas because different plants grow in different conditions — rice, for example, requires more water than wheat and barley.
4.    In Burzahom (in present-day Kashmir) people built pit-houses, which were dug into the ground, with steps leading into them. These may have provided shelter in cold weather.
5.    These are found all over the subcontinent. Some of the most important ones are in the north-west, in present-day Kashmir, and in east and south India..
6.    When people began growing plants, it meant that they had to stay in the same place for a long time looking after the plants, watering, weeding, driving away animals and birds — till the grain ripened.
    Long Answer:
1.    Stone tools have been found from many sites as well. Many of these are different from the earlier Palaeolithic tools and that is why they are called Neolithic. These include tools that were polished to give a fine cutting edge, and mortars and pestles used for grinding grain and other plant produce. Mortars and pestles are used for grinding grain even today, several thousand years later.
2.    In the following way people became herders:
•    Women, men and children could also attract and then tame animals by leaving food for them near their shelters.
•    Later, people encouraged animals that were relatively gentle to come near the camps where they lived.
•    These animals such as sheep, goat, cattle and also the pig lived in herds, and most of them ate grass.
3.    



4.    In the following way people became farmers:

•    The climate of the world was changing, and so were plants and animals that people used as food.
•    Men, women and children probably observed several things: the places where edible plants were found, how seeds broke off stalks, fell on the ground, and new plants sprouted from them.
•    Perhaps they began looking after plants — protecting them from birds and animals so that they could grow and the seeds could ripen.

5.    Members of a tribe follow occupations such as hunting, gathering, farming, herding and fishing.  
Usually, women do most of the agricultural work, including preparing the ground, sowing seeds, looking after the growing plants and harvesting grain. Children often look after plants, driving away animals and birds that might eat them. Women also thresh, husk, and grind grain. Men usually lead large herds of animals in search of pasture. Children often look after small flocks. The cleaning of animals and milking, is done by both men and women. Both women and men make pots, baskets, tools and huts. They also take part in singing, dancing and decorating their huts.

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