Unit Plan

Exploring Borderlands

Curated and Reviewed by Lesson Planet

What motivated Europeans to explore the New World, and what effects did their exploration have on Native American populations? The second installment of a 16-part American Passages series prompts pupils to watch a video and read several biographies of European explorers. They engage in discussions, draw pictures, write poetry, and complete a multimedia project to answer these questions and many more. There are also options for additional problem-based learning projects.

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CCSS: Adaptable
Instructional Ideas
  • Have learners write first person narratives from the perspective of both European explorers and native peoples 
  • Provide scholars with examples of Aztec poetry and ask them to choose a favorite to share with the class
Classroom Considerations
  • Find the referenced video on the Internet by searching for the unit title 
  • Print the timeline and explorer biographies for student reference
  • Requires a projector or other video viewing device
  • Includes thorough overview questions and specific learning objectives
  • Contains comprehension, context, and exploration questions for the video 
  • Provides a wealth of information, teaching tips, activities, and additional resources
  • None