Make and do at home
Have a go at making something inspired by the ancient Maya in your own home! Cook a delicious chocolate dish or make an object using the instructions which can be downloaded below.
Kew carries out important conservation work to protect rainforests where native cacao grows. This work will ensure a healthy supply of cacao to make chocolate in the future.
Bente Klitgaard is part of the team at Kew that carries out this vital work. She has shared her favourite chocolate recipes.
The ancient Maya prepared special chocolate drinks using seeds from the cacao tree. Find out more about the plants, such as allspice and vanilla, which the ancient Maya used to flavour the drink to give it a distinctive taste.
Make a mask
The ancient Maya made masks to wear during special ceremonies. The masks were inspired by plants and animals which were important in Maya culture.
Download one of the templates to have a go at making your very own Maya mask at home.
Make a worry doll
In Guatemala there is a legend that says if you have a problem you should share it with a worry doll.
Using the downloadable instructions, learn how to make your very own worry dolls. Before going to bed tell one worry to each doll and place them beneath your pillow. Whilst you sleep, the legend says that the dolls will take your worries away!
Make an origami waterlily
The ancient Maya had a strong relationship with plants and animals. They believed that plants came from the Underworld, a place beneath the Earth’s surface where people went when they died. Water was a place where Underworld and Earth overlapped, and the waterlily was an important link between the two.
Using the instructions, learn how to make your own origami waterlily at home.
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