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Thursday, February 5

Today’s Learning: Was Mansa Musa the wealthiest person who ever lived?

Warm Up: Please finish the questions about the Catalan Atlas excerpt on p. 14 of your notebook.

Class Work: Close read Document C: Al-Umari and underline information from this document that might answer the question, “Was Mansa Musa the wealthiest person of all time?”. Then answer these questions on p. 15 of your notebook:

1) (Sourcing) Who is Al-Umari? Do you think he is a reliable source of information on Mansa Musa’s pilgrimage to Mecca? Why, or why not?
2) (Corroboration) How does this document compare to The Huffington Post blog post and the Catalan Atlas in terms of its depiction of Mansa Musa?
3) (Close Reading) How does the emir Abu describe Mansa Musa to Al-Umari? According to the emir Abu, what traits does Mansa Musa possess?
4) Do you think Al-Umari’s description of Mansa Musa is accurate? Why or why not?

Discuss responses as a class.

Then answer these closing questions on p. 16 of your notebook:

1. Based on all of this evidence, how would you describe Mansa Musa? What type of person was he? Do you think he was the richest person ever? How might we further investigate these questions?
2. Were the claims made in The Huffington Post about Mansa Musa accurate?
3. What evidence from the documents suggests that Mansa Musa was the richest person ever? What are the limitations of each of these documents?
4. What further types of evidence would help you to continue investigating whether Mansa Musa was the richest person ever? What are some challenges in locating such evidence?


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