The teacher will write these questions on the board. "What do you think about the town or city in which you live? Why do you live there? Why do you think that early people settled in areas of good soil and abundant water? The students will formulate answers in their journals. The students will read pages 16-20 in U.S. History textbook. The students will complete pages 14-15 in student workbook. These are graphic organizers summarizing and detailing information about the Aztec, Inca and Mayan civilizations. The teacher will present a PowerPoint Presentation based on the hierarchy and requirements of early civilizations. The teacher will place the slide show on the screen via the video projector. The students will have copies of the slide show in printed handout form. Once the presentation has been read, the students will answer the cause and effect comprehension questions located on the last slide of the presentation.
The students will watch a video from www.unitedstreaming.com which will give detailed information regarding the lives of the Aztec, Inca and Mayan people. The students will take notes on the video.
Today's world is a very small place, and we know a lot about the world in which we live and its inhabitants. However, this was not always the case. There was a time in history, when human beings only knew of the European continent and very little beyond that. This lack of knowledge was to change with the Age of Discovery. This Age of Discovery began in 1400, and it was to take us around the world, discovering new and exciting places. Back in 1400, travel was very difficult and dangerous. Most people could not read or write. There were few maps available to travelers and technology was not very advanced. All these factors added to the difficulty of traveling, and as a result people really only had knowledge of their own immediate area. However, some people did still manage to explore despite these obstacles! The Vikings went out to America and briefly lived there, and some merchants from Venice had managed to travel to China prior to 1400.
As a result of the European exploration of the "New World" many people began immigrating there for religious freedoms, political freedoms and economic opportunities.
The enormous European impact on the Americas is still obvious today in languages and cultures, as well as in religious and political beliefs
Age of Exploration: Spain
The Christian missionaries who accompanied the conquistadors and settlers established mission towns throughout the Spain's new world empire and played an important role in converting the Native Americans to Christianity as well as teaching them European methods of producing agriculture.
Age of Exploration: England
Spain and Portugal led the Age of Exploration. However, England came to dominate the continent of North America. During the settlement process, eighty percent of the people living in the original thirteen colonies along the east coast were from England. These original thirteen colonies became known as the United States of America in 1776 at the advent of the American Revolutionary War.
America was ultimately influenced by The "Columbian Exchange" a phrase coined by historian Alfred Crosby which describes the interchange of plants, animals, and diseases between the Old World and the Americas following Columbus's arrival in the Caribbean in 1492. For reasons beyond human control, rooted deep in the divergent evolutionary histories of the continents, the Columbian Exchange massively benefited the people of Europe and its colonies while bringing catastrophe to Native Americans.