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Showing posts sorted by relevance for query Egypt. Sort by date Show all posts
Showing posts sorted by relevance for query Egypt. Sort by date Show all posts

Around the World in 12 Dishes--Egypt Part 1 Date Cake


Today we are starting our exploration of Egypt. Since there are so many wonderful resources out there, we will be sharing our adventures over several posts. The first recipe we tried was for a date cake. The recipe came from A World of Recipes Series book called  Egypt by Sue Townsend and Caroline Young.
Dates are plentiful in Egypt, so they are used often in Egyptian cooking.


Egyptian Woman
Source: Phillip Martin
Date Cake
11 oz fresh dates
5 oz blanched almonds
4 oz soft brown sugar
1 orange
4 eggs, separated
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp ground cardamom
1 1/2 oz butter
3 tbsp cornstarch
1 tsp confectioners' sugar to dust

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Grease a 9-in cake pan with butter or margarine and line it with wax paper.

Cut dates in half and remove pits.

Put almonds and brown sugar into a food processor and chop/blend them until coarsely chopped. (The recipe called for a blender, but I found my blender didn't do the job and I needed the food processor.)

Add the dates and chop until finely chopped, but not ground. Put aside.

Using the fine side of a grater, grate the rind from the orange and set the rind aside. Then cut the orange in half and squeeze the juice from half of it.

Whisk the egg whites until they make soft peaks and set aside.

In a large bowl, beat the yolks, granulated sugar and cardamom. Stir in the date mixture, butter, orange rind and 1 tablespoon of orange juice, and cornstarch.

Carefully fold in the egg whites. Spoon the mixture into the prepared pan and bake for 35-45 minutes until the cake springs back when pressed.

Cool the cake in the pan for 15 minutes and then place it on a wire rack. Dust with confectioners' sugar before serving.






Here are some of the resources we have been exploring. The first are a set of books that were definitely stories from modern times. Some are meant to take place in ancient times and/or explore ancient times. Hands Around the Library Protecting Egypt's Treasured Books by Karen Leggett Abouraya is a wonderful modern book about the student led protests they had a few years ago. It is really one of the only children's books I found about more recent events in Egypt. Mummy Math and Count Your Way through Egypt I shared as our math exploration on Sunday with activities to go along with them. The other two are modern twists on seeing the sights and understanding Ancient Egypt.



Here are our non-fiction reference books. These books give a good look at Egypt both present day and ancient and also offer quite a few great crafts to go along with them. One of my favorites is What Did the Ancient Egyptians Do for Me? by Patrick Catel. It really explains how some of the things we use in every day life came from Ancient Egypt.


So far we have played with pyramids. We made one out of Legos and made some out of paper nets we found at Activity Village. We are hoping to make the sand clay ones from The Crafts and Culture of the Ancient Egyptians by Joann Jovinelly and Jason Netelkos, but have not had time yet. Hopefully we will have them to share next week.
I hope you will join us next Tuesday for our second adventure in exploring Egypt. We will share more food, ancient tales and music. Here is a great Egypt placemat to color for the younger children. Here is the four page passport for Egypt. Now you can check out these great Egyptian posts or add your own.

Fairy Tales in Different Cultures--Rimonah of the Flashing Sword

Since we are exploring Egypt this month with Around the World in 12 Dishes, I thought I would take us back to Egypt for a fairy tale. Since we already shared the Egyptian Cinderella, we are sharing today an Egyptian Snow White. First a few details about Egypt. Since the history of Egypt is so long and intense I will not do it justice, but this is meant to be an introduction.
Source
The Arabic Republic of Egypt is in two continents: Africa and Asia. Egypt is the fifteenth most populous country in the world. The majority of the people live along the Nile River. The Nile River is the longest river in the world and flows to the North. The only land that is arable is found along the banks of the Nile. The rest of the land  in Egypt is desert.

Source
Egypt has the longest history of all modern states since it has been continuously inhabited since the tenth millennium BC. With the advances of the ancient civilizations to include the pyramids, the Great Sphinx, among other amazing discoveries. The Egyptians were one of the first civilizations to codify art and architecture. They also are given the invention of paper from the papyrus plant and among the first to have an written alphabet.
Source

The official language is Modern Standard Arabic. Ninety percent of the residents of Egypt identify as Muslim and the other ten percent are a form of Christian. Islam arrived in Egypt in the 7th century. At that time Egypt emerged as the center of politics and culture in the Muslim World. 
Source
In more recent times there has been an on-going revolution. It started with protests in 2011 and continues in our current news today.

Now onto our story. We are sharing Rimonah of the Flashing Sword adapted by Eric A. Kimmel. In the Author's Note, Kimmel mentions he came upon the traditional version in Miriam's Tambourine by Howard Schwartz. He knows the tale is from North Africa and Schwartz said it came from Egypt.

This story begins with a queen who is eating a pomegranate. She wishes to have a child with skin is as dark as the pomegranate, eyes as bright as its seeds and voice as sweet as the juice of the pomegranate. Soon she has a daughter with these qualities and she names her Rimonah which means pomegranate. Rimonah grows up in a loving household until her seventh birthday when her mother dies. Upon her deathbed, Rimonah's mother gives her a vial with three drops of her blood to wear around her neck. She tells her if they blood turns red and to liquid (after drying) then Rimonah is in danger. Then the mother dies.

The father who vows not to remarry ever, is married before his first wife is in the grave. The new wife is a sorceress who want to increase her power by becoming queen. She used her magic to kill the first queen and to make the king not have control of his mind. She keeps her special magic tools in a tower that only she is permitted to go in. She has a magic porcelain bowl that when she fills it with water, she can ask it any question and get a truthful answer. She asks if she is the fairest of all. One day it answers that Rimonah is fairer. She gets angry and orders a servant to go kill her.

The servant takes Rimonah out and pulls out his dagger, and Rimonah begs for her life. He tells her to go far away. Rimonah escapes leaving behind her cape which the huntsman uses as proof of her death. He covers it with blood of a gazelle first. 

Rimonah finds a group of bedouin. Since they do not follow the rule of the king and queen she is welcomed. She learns to ride and use her sword with them. She becomes well known for her skill with the sword and dagger. One day the queen hears someone discussing Rimonah of the desert's sword skill. The queen is shocked to hear she is not dead. She goes to her bowl to check and learns that she is still alive. She uses a magic cape to dress as a bedouin prince and brings a magical scorpion necklace. It turns into a real scorpion at sunset. She leaves it at Rimonah's tent with the other suitors' gifts. Rimonah gives it to one of her friends, but notices the blood in her necklace turn red and liquid. She grabs the necklace from her friends neck as the sun sets and kills the scorpion. At this point her friends urge her to leave since she has been found. 

Rimonah leaves and finds a cave with a huge stone blocking the entrance. She hides and sees its inhabitants, 40 thieves, enter using the words, "Open Sesame." She tries it and goes in.She leaves her horse in the stables and discovers a beautiful castle. She finds the forty beds and lies down for a quick rest, but falls fast asleep. The thieves find her and want to kill her, but bring her to their leader. They think she is a spy for the queen. She tells them how the queen has tried to kill her twice and they allow her to join them. They call her Rimonah of the Flashing Sword after seeing her skill. All of the thieves were honest men who were destroyed by the queen (all of their belongings taken by the queen's servants). 
My Rimonah

The queen discovers that Rimonah is still alive and uses her magic to find her. This time she brings a poisonous ring. She convinces Rimonah to put it on after she rolls it under the locked castle door saying the leader of the thieves wanted her to have it. She falls to the ground instantly. However she does not die since her mother's love is protecting her.

The thieves find her and put her in a glass coffin thinking she is dead. One day a prince finds his way into the cave and falls in love with the beautiful woman in the coffin. Even though she is surrounded by forty men asleep with their swords out, he opens the coffin to kiss her. The thieves wake up and threaten to kill him until they hear Rimonah's voice saying to spare him since he is the prince of her dreams. They are so happy to have Rimonah alive, but sad that she and the prince are in love. Rimonah tells the prince she will not be happy without her forty men. He agrees. As they journey to the prince's kingdom, they find a coffin in the desert and the leader of the thieves discovers it is the king. Rimonah wants to see her father once more and asks them to open it for her. She cries at her father's death and her tears awaken her father. He tells them how the queen used her magic to control him and then kill him. They decide Rimonah will not be safe with the queen alive so all of them go to kill her. When her people see them coming they abandon the queen. The queen having gotten knowledge that her end is near from the magic bowl tries to escape on her magic carpet, but leaves the bowl behind. Rimonah runs to the tower and throws the bowl at the queen. When the bowl hits the carpet and then the ground it breaks and the carpet unwinds. The queen dies. Everyone is happy. The thieves become the guards of Rimonah and her prince.

For this book I love how Rimonah is the best at the sword and becomes well known for her skill. She also does not need the men to save her as much as she can fight for herself. We made a sword, well actually a khopesh, an ancient Egyptian sword. I used the pattern from Storm the Castle. Our cardboard was a bit flimsy so we put duct tape on it. This made it a little better.

Fairy Tales in Different Cultures--Egyptian Cinderella



Today I am going to share with you a version of Cinderella from Egypt. Now the most fascinating thing to me about this story is there is some historical truth to it. According to the Author's Note at the end of the book: the fact that there was a Greek slave girl named Rhodopis and she married the Pharaoh Amasis and became his queen. This is one of the oldest Cinderella tales and it was first recorded by the Roman historian Strabo in the first century B.C.

Math Lessons--Egyptian Math--Pyramids



Mathematical ScandalsToday I am going to share some math with you. If you have read the About Me section, you know I am a former high school math teacher. With so many kids going back to school now, I thought I would introduce a few math picture books and fun math lessons each week. Since this month's theme for Around the World with 12 Dishes is Egypt I thought I would share two books involving Egypt and math first. Plus I always like to include a little history with math lessons. I did this as a teacher as well. I loved sharing stories from Theoni Pappas' Mathematical Scandals with my classes.
Egyptian Man
Source: Phillip Martin

Some other interesting facts are that Egyptians developed a 365-day calendar--12 months of 30 days with 5 extra days, the decimal system, concept of zero, wrote in fractions, and the start of algebra. For information on the calendar click here, decimal system here, zero here,  fractions here, and algebra here.

Now the first book I am going to share with you is Count Your Way through Egypt by Jim Haskins and Kathleen Benson. This is a simple counting picture book. It introduces the numbers in both English and Arabic. It begins with a short introduction about Egypt and its language. Then it begins to count from one to ten and for each number they show something Egyptian. One canal, two parts (cut by the Nile) and each number has an explanation to go with what it is counting.
This book is very appropriate for young children who are learning their numbers. It also could work with older children with the many hieroglyph number problems you can find on-line. Discovering Egypt has some divided by ages. University of Chicago also provides some. Deciphering hieroglyphs is equivalent to decoding a message which is taught in algebra.



The next book is Mummy Math An Adventure in Geometry by Cindy Neuschwander.This book is about two children who go to Egypt with their scientist parents to help an archeologist find the burial chamber/pharaoh in the tomb he has discovered. The kids and their dog are the first to climb into the tomb and the door closes behind them. Since the kids are stuck inside without any adults, they decide to go see if they can find the burial chamber. The sister had learned to read hieroglyphics before they left home. The clues to finding the pharaoh involve faces. At first they assume the clues mean people's faces, but then they realize they mean the faces of the solids which are pictured all over the place. They manage to find the burial chamber and an exit by following all the clues and knowing their geometry solids.

Needless to say this story lends itself to lessons on the solids like a pyramid, prism, cone, sphere. It also uses words like tetrahedron and cube. Here is a worksheet with the definitions of these words. The faces of a solid are the polygons, the edges are where two faces intersect and the vertices are the points where the edges intersect.

Some Worksheets Found On-Line:
Pyramids
Source: Phillip Martin

Since we are focusing on Egypt, we made some pyramids. We made some out of paper. Since Hazel is only four, we used pre-made nets that I found at Activity Village.
I printed two out on cardstock and then let Hazel decorate one. I colored one brown to look like the stone in Egypt.


Then we glued them together. So I would not have to hold them while the glue dried I put rubber bands around them. This worked pretty well.

For older children, you could have them make the net or for a real challenge have them construct it with a compass and a straightedge (no measuring allowed). For more information on constructions visit Math Open Reference.

Of course you could also calculate the surface area and the volume of all the solids. Math.com has the formulas easily available. You can find some worksheets here.

We also made a pyramid out of a Legos. This was a fun activity to do together with Hazel. For someone slightly older they could do it by themselves.



These three books also have other ideas for making pyramids. Some out of clay, sand clay (with recipe), instructions on drawing the net of it, etc.  We are hoping to make one out of sand clay, but have not had the time yet to make the clay. Maybe you will see that in one of our Egypt posts coming later this month.

For now, I hope you have enjoyed our little math lesson and exploration of Egypt.


Hatshepsut of Egypt -- Multicultural Children's Book Day Review

Disclosure: I was sent this book to review free of charge from Goosebottom Books. All opinions in this post are my own. I did not receive any other compensation for this review. I am including links to each item for your convenience but do not receive anything if you purchase them.

Today we are honored to review a book about a very strong woman, Hatshepsut. Have you heard of her? I hadn't, so I found this book fascinating. The book is Hatshepsut of Egypt by Shirin Yim Bridges and illustrated by Albert Nguyen. It is part of The Thinking Girl's Treasury of Real Princesses.
http://goosebottombooks.com/home/pages/OurBooksDetail/hatshepsut-of-egypt

This is a series of books that share real princesses with girls. These are not your average fru fru princesses who wear pretty dresses and sit around waiting to be saved by a prince. These are women who had strength and guts to rule countries.

Around the World in 12 Dishes: Exploring Egypt Part 2



Last week we shared our first Egyptian cooking, which was Date Cake. Today we are going to share our Egyptian Dinner recipes. Our dinner recipes came from Foods of Egypt by Barbara Sheen.

Multicultural Coloring Books -- A Relaxing Saturday Review

Disclosure: I was sent these books free of charge in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own. 

It has been awhile since I have done a Relaxing Friday review, so today I am sharing three coloring books with you. These books each help teach a bit about cultures. Join us as we take looks at Asia, a Japanese garden and Ancient Egypt. Our first book is A Touch of Asia from Tuttle Publishing. 

The Thinking Girl's Treasury of Real Princesses from Goosebottom Books -- Women's History Month

Disclosure: I was sent these books to review free of charge from Goosebottom Books. All opinions in this post are my own. I did not receive any other compensation for this review. I am including links to each item for your convenience but do not receive anything if you purchase them.

Back in January I had the pleasure of reviewing my first Goosebottom Book for Multicultural Children's Book Day. The book was Hatshepsut of Egypt and we learned about the first female pharaoh of Egypt. At the time I reviewed an e-book and loved the book, but now that I have actually seen the hardcover book I have to tell you the e-book does not do it justice. I actually passed on the book to Hazel's school since the third grade class learns about Hatshepsut during their study of Ancient Egypt. The principal loved the book as well. Along with the hard copy of Hatshepsut of Egypt I was sent five more of the books in the Thinking Girl's Treasury of Real Princesses to share with you today. I love learning about these amazing women most of whom I had not heard of previously. Update: My review of Isabella of Castile is now published.

Circle of Moms--Please Vote and the Virgin Mary



Source

As you may know this year I really tried to focus with Hazel on the true meaning of Christmas and not all the commercialism.  To see some of the things we did you can check out my post with the Focus on the Nativity Blog Hop here. We also went to a live nativity which I highly recommend. Anyway, with our focus on it and going to church (my favorite time is Advent since I love all the Christmas music and stories), my mind has been on the Virgin Mary. Now I should add that the sermon at church the Sunday before Christmas was about Mary, so it was planted in my head. The sermon was on the true personality of Mary. She is always portrayed as obedient and good, however doing what Gabriel asked was a huge sacrifice and could have caused her death. Plus we tend to overlook that she was an unwed pregnant teenager when we look at her as a role model for our children. However this is not my focus of my thoughts completely tonight.

The Treasury of Glorious Goddesses: Isis, Athena, and Ixchel -- Book Reviews

Disclosure: I was sent these books to review free of charge from Goosebottom Books. All opinions in this post are my own. I did not receive any other compensation for this review. I am including links to each item for your convenience but do not receive anything if you purchase them.

Last month (and January) I was able to share with you Goosebottom Books' The Thinking Girl's Treasury of Real Life Princesses Series (you can see them here and here). Today I am going to share the Treasury of Glorious Goddesses with you. These books are chapter books and are written in the goddesses' voice (first person). What is amazing to me is how captivated Hazel was with these stories. She did not know any mythology or at least not much and she asked each night for more chapters of whichever of the three books we were reading. Personally I only knew about Athena and did not remember everything from studying Greek mythology back in school. The other great thing about these books is at the end there is information about the culture the goddess oversees and the time period when she was popular. Things like what people wore, ate and did are given there. It adds a whole other dimension to the history behind the stories.

The Story of Passover -- Exodus



 Disclosure: Tuttle Publishing gave me a copy of this map free of charge for this review. All opinions in my review are my own and I did not receive any other compensation. As in all my reviews I am providing links for your ease, but receive no compensation.

Today I am joining some other Multicultural Kid Blogs to bring you a Passover for Kids Blog Hop. This year I decided to focus on the Biblical story behind Passover. As a Christian I know this story since it is part of the Old Testament (in the book of Exodus chapters 7 through 14). To look at this story we started by looking at it in cartoon form on a DVD from the library.

A Seder Dinner: Exploring Passover

Have you entered my current giveaway yet?


As a Christian I have only been to a Seder Dinner twice in my life. The first was as a child and the second was as an adult. Both were held at churches. I have always been fascinated by it. Perhaps it is because of the Last Supper being a Seder Dinner. Our exploration has brought with it many questions from Hazel with things like why don't we do this if Jesus did, but that is another story. My goal for this year was to look at what is involved with a Seder Dinner. We of course first looked at books like we always do.

Multicultural Tuesday--Passover

Have you entered my current giveaway for two amazing children's books by Julia Donaldson yet?

Since we have started our Fairy Tales in Different Cultures on Mondays, I have not had any other Multicultural Mondays. So in honor of Passover starting last night, I thought I would share a bit about Passover. Having grown up in a town that had a large percent of Jewish residents I have many friends who celebrate Passover. 

A Little History:
Passover is the holiday festival that Jewish people remember when God saved them from slavery in Egypt 3,300 years ago. The story is found in the book of  Exodus in both the Christian Bible and the Hebrew Bible. The book of Exodus includes how the Pharaoh enslaved the Jewish people and killed the males as well as the birth of Moses and how he was saved. Then how Moses and God led the Jews to freedom. The Bible tells that God helped the Jews escape slavery in Egypt by inflicting ten plagues upon the ancient Egyptians before the Pharaoh would release his Israelite slaves; the tenth and worst of the plagues was the death of the Egyptian first-born. The Israelites were instructed to mark the doorposts of their homes with the blood of a spring lamb and, upon seeing this, the spirit of the Lord knew to pass over the first-born in these homes, hence the name of the holiday. When the Pharaoh freed the Jews, it is said that they left in such a hurry that they could not wait for bread dough to rise. For the duration of Passover no leavened bread is eaten. Matzo (flat unleavened bread) is a symbol of the holiday. (Source)
Matzo (Source)
Celebrating Passover:
To celebrate Passover, first one must cleanse the house of all leavening products (chametz). Many Jewish families will clean their house completely to ensure there is not a speck of chametz left in it. Many families also have a separate set of dishes for Passover as to not chance having any chametz residue during a meal from a plate. 
http://www.stmarys-waco.org/pictures/passover-disposable-seder-d.jpg
Seder Plate (Source)

It is traditional for a family to gather on the first night of Passover for a Seder (a special dinner). During the Seder the story of the Exodus from Egypt is told using a special text called the Haggadah. (Source) Seder customs include drinking four glasses of wine, eating matzo, partaking in symbolic foods on the Seder plate and celebrating freedom. There are six items on the Seder plate. An egg represents the sacrifice offered at the Jerusalem Temple. The shank bone symbolizes the lamb sacrificed at the Temple in Jerusalem. The bitter herb symbolizes the bitterness of slavery. Charoset/Haroses a sweet brown paste made of fruit and nuts symbolizes the mortar used to build the Egyptian store houses. Lettuce or Chazeret is Romaine lettuce or grated  horseradish also symbolizing the bitterness of slavery. Parsley which is dipped into salt water which stands for hope and new life and the salt water for the tears of the Jewish slaves. (Sources: Wikipedia and Passover Magic by Roni Schotter)

Children play an important role in the Seder. The youngest child present has the important job of asking the four questions. 
Why is this night different from all other nights?
Why on this night do we eat only matzoh?
Why on this night do we eat bitter herbs?
Why on this night do we dip parsley into salt wter and bitter herbs into haroses?
Why on this night do we recline at the table?
During the Seder the questions are answered by the adults reading the Haggadah. (Source: Passover Magic by Roni Schotter)


I wanted to find a way to introduce Passover to Hazel. For her age I decided on some story books. When we were at the library, I had her pick out a few books that looked good to her in the Passover section. Here are her choices.
These stories are wonderful ways to show how to celebrate the holiday. If you do not read the author's notes you will not learn the history of the holiday. I am not sure she is ready for this, so I have not extended it yet, but will at some point.

I hope to also have or attend a Seder with Hazel. The year I got pregnant with her my church held a Seder. I had helped in the planning a bit. I am hoping she will experience it as well at some point. As a Christian it is important to remember the Jewish holidays as well. For our communion comes from Jesus celebrating Passover with his disciples. 

I hope I have clearly and correctly stated about Passover and wish all my Jewish readers a very Happy Passover.

Travel with Books at Home Product Reviews



Disclosure: Candlewick Press gave me a copy of this book free of charge to review. All opinions in my review are my own and I did not receive any other compensation. As in all my reviews I am providing links for your ease, but receive no compensation.

Do you love to travel? Or do you dream of traveling without hassles? We love to explore the world from home with dreams of someday getting to see more of it. For now we like to explore with books and posters and such to see and learn about the world without leaving home. Candlewick Press has some products that makes this really fun and easy. The first three books are from a series called Panorama Pops. We got to explore The Louvre, Australia and Venice in this form. It was so much fun. These books are like pocket guides with pop-up pictures. The book is double sided since it folds out and has the pop-ups on both sides.

Kid Friendly Look at the Stories of The Arabian Nights

Only 2 more days to enter to win the 2 Doozers Pod Squad DVDS. Take your preschoolers on STEM Adventures with these DVDS.

 For our last exploration this year of the Middle East, we decided to look at some of the stories of The Arabian Nights. While reading about Middle Eastern mathematicians and scientists I found a comment about how the Iraqi scholar Abu 'Abd Allah ibn 'Abdus al-Jashyari translated Persian, Indian, Iranian, Turkish and Chinese stories into Arabic. He changed the names to the exotic Arabic names we know today like Aladdin, Ali Baba, Scheherazade and Sinbad. He also changed the locations of some of the adventures. After al-Jashyari's death other Muslim scholars added to his collection until it contained the full 1001 stories that the title suggests. (Source: Steffens, Bradley, Ibn al-Haytham, Morgan Reynolds Publishing, Greensboro, NC 2007, page 17) This fascinated me. 

Fun Facts about Cats for World Cat Day

Did you know today (August 8th) is World Cat Day? To honor our furry friends (we have two) I am sharing some fun facts about cats. There are so many interesting things about cats out there so I divided them up into categories: General Facts, Cats in History and Around the World, Cat Records and Cats versus Dogs. 
Fluffy Napping with Hazel and Steve

There is More to Princesses than Sparkle and Ball Gowns - National Princess Week Resources & Giveaway

Do you know that the last full week of April is National Princess Week? In 2012 Target, Julie Andrews and Disney started National Princess Week. Now Hazel and I are both girly-girls and we love the sparkle and glamour of Disney princess, however I want Hazel to know there is more to princesses than sparkle and ball gowns. I want her to have strong women role models and have worked hard to share stories throughout her life thus far with strong female role models. To help you teach your children about princesses that are not all sparkly and wearing ball gowns I have gathered together some of our favorite princess books and with donations from the publishers I am providing you a chance to win most of our resources!! Some of these books we have reviewed previously and others are new ones and we will be reviewing them this month. Another great resource is our Fairy Tales in Different Cultures Series. Many of these versions of traditional fairy tales do not have all the sparkle and glamour of the Disney versions.

The History of Zero--Asian Pacific American Heritage Blog Series and Giveaway Post

This post is part of the Asian-Pacific American Heritage Blog Series and Giveaway on Multicultural Kid Blogs. You can enter the giveaway at the end of the post. There is a link party for all Asian-Pacific American Heritage posts on Multicultural Kid Blogs. We also have a link party for Japan posts in our Global Learning for Kids this month. Next month will be India.

History of Zero:

Can you imagine a world without zero? Or perhaps you wonder why we need to represent nothing at all? For centuries there was no mark or symbol of zero. The history of the number zero begins in Asia. It is believed that the first people to have a symbol for zero were the Babylonians. The Babylonians had inherited the counting system of the Sumerians which was the first to have a symbol instead of hash marks for each number.
Ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia c. 1450 BC
Around 1450 B.C. By Свифт/Svift (my work) 
[Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons