People and Places
Highland houses: The case of honai
This lesson demonstrates how highland homes in Southeast Asia are a product of the surrounding environment and play an important role in social and cultural structures.
|Subject||History / Social Studies|
|Topic||Highland houses: The case of honai and tongkonan|
|Key idea||Across time, people respond to the varied natural environment of a region in multiple ways that shape their
worldviews and way of life.
|Key concepts||Environment, highlands, lowlands, coastlands
People, worldviews, way of life
Commonalities and diversities
|No. of periods / lessons||1 period (1 period is approximately 50 minutes)|
|Facilities needed:||A/V equipment and Internet access to play the video clips (or hard copy with similar content)
Sources and handouts for distribution
|Prerequisite knowledge||No prerequisite knowledge required.
Understanding the attributes of highlands (as explored in Lesson 3: Highlands and agriculture) is a plus.
By the end of the lesson, the students will be able to:
Download the lesson plan for details on the talks and activities suggested below.
Students watch and discuss a short video on houses in highlands.
2. Group work: Source (image/video) analysis
Students discover the structures of highland homes in Toraja and Papua. They think about how the structures are used and in what ways they are connected to their surrounding environment.
3. Two column note taking on the Papuan Voices video clip
* Option 1, for A/V equipped classroom
After watching a video, students reflect on the value of the honai as a cultural structure and its meaning in Wamena and Torajan society.
4. Two-column note taking on Houses of the
Highlands: The tongkonan and the honai
*Option 2, for non-A/V equipped classroom
After reading the provided articles, students reflect on the value of the honai and tongkonan as a cultural structure and its meaning in Wamena and Torajan society.
Students evaluate their original assumptions about the region, people, use of, and materials used in the construction of the honai and tongkonan and compare housing from their own country’s highlands with housing being examined in this lesson.
6. Reflection: Performance task
Students brainstorm the layout of their future homes according to the environment that they live in and present their visualization to the class .
Students and teacher conclude that our way of life (housing) is shaped by the
environment we live in.