Introductory notes on Social Studies for CTET 2016
Central board of secondary Education (the exam conducting body for CTET) has notified the date of examination of Central Teacher Eligibility Test (CTET) to be held on September 2016. Candidates are keen to qualify it to be eligible for being teachers (class I to class VIII) in government schools (state governments conduct their own TET exam). Social studies/Social science is one of the elective subjects in paper II of CTET.
History is a major part of the syllabus of social studies/social science in CTET exams. So, one has to focus on the history of India. Indian History is a topic of interest to many because of the cultures and civilizations existed in this sub-continent. History of India can be studied under political, cultural, religious or economic heads. Chronologically, Indian History can be classified into three periods – Ancient India, Medieval India and Modern India.
One should follow NCERT books for detailed study and preparations of history. Here, the current article introduces ancient history of India followed by few sample questions on the same:
Ancient India: One can assume the beginning of the history of India with the Indus Valley Civilization and the coming of the Aryans. These two phases (Indus Valley Civilization and the coming of the Aryans) are commonly known as the pre-Vedic and Vedic periods. The Rig Veda, most likely composed between 1,500 B.C. and 1,000 B.C is the earliest literary source that sheds light on India's past.
Ancient India can also be studied under other heads like Palaeolithic, Mesolithic, Neolithic and Chalcolithic period – based on the type of stone/ metal tools people used.
(1)Palaeolithic Period (2 million BC – 10,000 BC)
•Fire, Tools made up of lime stone
•Important Palaeolithic sites : Bhimbetka, Hunsgi, Kurnool Caves, Narmada Valley (Hathnora, M.P), Kaladgi Basin
(2)Mesolithic Period (10,000 BC – 8,000 BC)
•Domestication of animals ie Cattle rearing started
•Microlithics found at Brahmagiri (Mysore), Narmada, Vindya, Gujarat
(3)Neolithic Period (8000 BC – 4,000 BC)
•Inamgaon = An early village
•Important Neolithic Sites : Burzahom(Kashmir), Gufkral(Kashmir), Mehrgarh(Pakistan), Chirand(Bihar), Daojali Hading(Tripura/Assam), Koldihwa(UP), Mahagara(UP), Hallur(AP), Paiyampalli(AP), Maski, Kodekal, Sangana Kaller, Utnur, Takkala Kota.
•NB: Megalithic Sites: Brahmagiri, Adichanallur
(4)Chalcolithic Period (4000 BC – 1,500 BC)
•Copper Age. Can be considered part of Bronze Age. (Bronze = Copper + Tin)
•Indus Valley Civilization (BC 2700 – BC 1900).
•Also cultures at Brahmagiri, Navada Toli (Narmada region), Mahishadal (W.Bengal), Chirand (Ganga region)
(5)Iron Age (BC 1500 – BC 200)
•Vedic Period (Arrival of Aryans ie. BC 1600 – BC 600) – Nearly 1000 years (Basic books of Hinduism, ie Vedas were composed, might have written down later.)
•Jainism and Buddhism
•Mahajanapadas – Major Civilization after Indus Valley- On banks of river Ganga
•Magadha empire – Bimbisara of Haryanka Kula
•Sisunga dyanasy – Kalasoka (Kakavarnin)
•Nanda empire – Mahapadma-nanda, Dhana-nanda
•Persian- Greek : Alexander 327 BC
(6)Mauryan Empire (321-185 BC):
Chandra Gupta Maurya, Bindusara, Asoka
(7)Post Mauryan Kingdoms (Middle Kingdoms):
•Sunga (181-71 BC), Kanva (71-27BC), Satavahanas (235-100BC), Indo-Greeks, Parthians (19-45AD), Sakas (90BC-150AD), Kushanas(78AD)
•South Indian Kingdoms – Chola, Chera, Pandyas (BC 300)
(8)Gupta Kingdom (300AD – 800AD): Samudra Gupta (Indian Napoleon)
(9)Post Guptas or Contemporary Guptas: Harshvardana, Vakatakas, Pallavas, Chalukyas. Also, Hunas, Maitrakas, Rajputs, Senas and Chauhans.
Ancient India Facts
•Aryabhatta, the great astronomer and scientist, discovered zero.
•Invention of the number system in ancient India.
•In terms of town planning etc., the Indus valley civilization was one of the most advance civilizations.
•Thousands of students from all over studied different subjects during the ancient period as there were many famous and important centres of learning in India (Taxila and Nalanda).
•A ruler of the Mauryan Empire, Ashoka ruled over the country from 273 BC to 232 BC.
•The reign of Emperor Asoka covered most of India, South Asia and beyond, stretching from present day Afghanistan and parts of Persia in the west, to Bengal and Assam in the east, and Mysore in the south.
•Chandragupta Maurya was the founder of the Maurya Empire in India.
•As per the Greek and Latin accounts, King Chandragupta Maurya is known as Sandracottos or Andracottus.
•Harshavardhana was an Indian Emperor, who ruled over the northern parts of India for a period of more than forty years. His empire was spread over the states of Punjab, Bengal, Orissa and the entire Indo-Gangetic plain, lying to the north of the Narmada River.
•Indus Valley Civilization was an ancient civilization that thrived in the Indus and Ghaggar-Hakra river valleys, now in Pakistan, along with the northwestern parts of India, Afghanistan and Turkmenistan.
•The civilization, which is also known as Harappan Civilization, lasted from 3300 BC to 1700 BC. The discovery of the Ancient Indus River Valley Civilization was made, when the Harappan city, the first city of Indus Valley, was excavated.
•The Vedic Period or the Vedic Age refers to that time period when the Vedic Sanskrit texts were composed in India. The society that emerged during that time is known as the Vedic Period, or the Vedic Age, Civilization. The Vedic Civilization flourished between the 1500 BC and 500 BC on the Indo-Gangetic Plains of the Indian subcontinent.
Sample paper of ancient India:
1.The residues of the civilization were first noticed at which of the following places
2. Who among the following did excavate the important historical site of Harappa?
3. The Harappan civilization’s known extent in the east was up to ….
4. What is the number of main Puranas?
5. The Puranas were completed during the reign of:
d)None of the above
6. The Greek ambassador Megasthenes came in the court of:
c Mahapadma Nanda
7. Who was the witter the book ‘Rajatarangini’?
8. The writer of the book “Indica” was..
9. The most important text of Vedic Mathematics is:
a) Atharva veda
b) Sulva Sutras
c) Sapta Sindhava
d) Satapat Brahaman
10. Which of the following Muslim rulers did introduce (first time) the system of price control:
b) Jalaluddin Khalji
d) Alauddin Khalji
Analysis of last year question papers suggest that the questions on this part are generally moderate and being an interesting part, it may be a good opportunity to score good in this part. We wish you good luck.