The History of the Great Wall of China for Kids – FreeSchool


You’re watching FreeSchool! One of the most recognizable symbols of China,
the Great Wall of China has a long and complicated history. It is not just one wall, but many different
walls and fortifications that were built over the course of thousands of years. The walls built at different times were often
built with different materials, everything from packed dirt or wood to stone and brick. These walls were meant to protect China from
invasion. The earliest walls were built more than two
thousand years ago when individual states built walls of packed earth and gravel between
boards to protect their territories from attackers with swords and spears. Hundreds of years later in 221 BC the first
Emperor of China, Qin Shi Huang, ordered that walls that divided his empire should be destroyed
and a new wall connecting the remaining pieces should be built, creating fortifications that
protected the empire from northern attackers. No one knows exactly how long that wall was
or where it was built, as most of it has worn down or been destroyed. Over the next thousand years, different ruling
dynasties repaired, rebuilt, or expanded sections of the wall. The leaders of the Ming dynasty, which began
in 1368, constructed the most famous version of the Great Wall. They began by building watchtowers and garrisons,
later adding walls of stone and earth. New construction on the wall ended in 1644. At its height the Great Wall stretched more
than 13,000 miles or about 22,000 kilometers in total length, making it the longest structure
ever built by humans. In some places the walls were 30 feet or 9
meters thick, and 25 feet or 7.5 meters tall, and it was studded with as many as 25,000
watchtowers. You may have heard that the Great Wall is
so big that it can be seen from space, but that is only partially true. It cannot be seen at all from the moon, but
from a much closer orbit it could be seen by someone who knew exactly where to look
and what it would look like. Today the Great Wall of China is a World Heritage
site, protected and maintained for all of humanity to enjoy. Only some pieces of the wall are taken care
of, however, as it is simply too big and too damaged by time and old battles to repair
and take care of it all. In fact, nearly 1/3 of the wall has completely
disappeared, fallen down and even the stones taken away by local people to use in building. Still, the Great Wall is the most popular
place for tourists to visit in China, attracting millions of people each year. I hope you enjoyed learning about the Great
Wall of China today. Goodbye till next time!

23 thoughts on “The History of the Great Wall of China for Kids – FreeSchool”

  1. The Ming Dynasty built the Great Wall mainly using lime, brick, and stone slabs, but the Ming ruler had to renovate the Great Wall 18 times. The Chinese used a smoke signal system on the Great Wall. One smoke meant 100 enemies, two smoke meant 500 enemies, and 3 smoke meant 1,000 enemies.

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