Adventures in Time and Place
Grade 6: World
Infographic #8: Timbuktu
Page 365

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1. In 1988, Timbuktu was listed as an UNESCO World Heritage site. This designation recognizes that a place has “outstanding universal value.” In 1990, it was included on the List of World Heritage in Danger. Why is Timbuktu included on those two lists? Find out at World’s Most Endangered Sites.

  • Read about Timbuktu’s cultural heritage and the threats to its survival.
  • As you read, take notes about the historical significance of the city.
  • Click Learn about why Timbuktu was inscribed on UNESCO's World Heritage List and read the page.

Online Activity: Making the Lists
Some of the standards, or criteria, for qualifying for the World Heritage List and the List of World Heritage in Danger are listed below. Look at the criteria. Then use the information on the Web site to tell why Timbuktu belongs on the two lists. Type your persuasive arguments in the spaces provided.


Criteria: In order to be added to the World Heritage List, a place must have cultural, natural, or mixed universal value. A cultural World Heritage site includes historical buildings, archaeological sites, or monumental artwork of universal value.

Write a paragraph that tells why Timbuktu belongs on the World Heritage List.

Criteria: A World Heritage site is added to the List of World Heritage in Danger when it is threatened and preventative measures are necessary to preserve it.

Write a paragraph that tells why Timbuktu belongs on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

2. Take a virtual tour of Timbuktu. Go to Magical Mali: Timbuktu.

  • Click the bottom left picture.
  • Read the page and discuss the questions with your partner. Then click Go on a virtual visit to Timbuktu.
  • Move forward on your journey by reading each page, discussing the questions, and then clicking the directions on the bottom of the page.
  • Before you fly to Timbuktu, click worksheet. Your teacher will direct you to either print the worksheet or copy the chart onto a sheet of paper. Then click Back to Timbuktu and continue your visit.
  • When you finish your visit, click Go back home to return to the main page.

Offline Activity: Timbuktu Comparisons
With your partner, fill in the worksheet. Then think about what you know about Timbuktu when it was a thriving trade city. How does it compare to the Timbuktu of today you visited on the Web site? Add a third column to the worksheet. Title it “Timbuktu in the Past.” Now fill in five differences between Timbuktu today and Timbuktu in the past. See how the place where you live compares with Timbuktu present and past.

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