Lesson Plan : Portugal And The Exploration Of The World

Teacher Name:
 Ms. Keegan
 Grade 9-10
 Social Studies

 What factors make up an Empire? Is Portugal an Empire? Why or why not? Exploration, Spice Trade, & Life as an Explorer The first half of the time today will be used for students to work on their presentations. Each group is to use poster board to create a map that traces the route of their assigned explorer. The more creative and visually aesthetic, the better it is.
 Characteristics of an empire Roman Empire Spanish Empire Portuguese Empire Portuguese Explorers Henry the Navigator Vasco da Gama Bartolomeu Dias Routes of Exploration Maritime Discovery Motives Geographic, Technological, Economic, Political, and Cultural Patterns. Explorers: Henry the Navigator, Vasco da Gama, Bartolomeu Dias Spice Trade Decision Making of a Trader Effects of Trade Decisions
 1. Discussion on "empire" 2. Break into small groups 3. In groups, discuss "what defines an empire?" 4. Come up with a list of factors that contribute to an empire 5. Class discussion, come up with one big list of factors 6.Students will be given a short 15 question quiz on the 3 explorers presented to them by groups on day 3. (Ten Minutes) 7. 2. Discuss the answers to the quiz Day Two 1. Groups will work on developing presentations of their assigned explorer (first half of the class) 2. Create a map that traces the route of their assigned explorer 3. Students will have access to the computer and internet sites to help them prepare for their presentations. 4. Groups will present their 5-minute presentation on assigned explorer & map (second half of class)
 Once the students decide what defines an empire I will then propose the question "Is Portugal an Empire?" Based upon what they have learned this past week and in the previous units on other empires students must discuss and decide the answer to this question. If they believe it is an empire, what makes it an empire? If they donít believe Portugal should be considered an empire, why not? Students will be able to gather information on their assigned explorer (Henry the Navigator, Vasco da Gama, or Bartolomeu Dias) on their own by accessing tutorials I provide them with on the Internet, in addition to their assigned readings and class notes. They will choose which facts and information they feel is most important and share that with their fellow classmates in their 5-minute presentations. Creating a large poster-board map will allow students to trace the routes of their explorer and point out the important discoveries found along the way. The presentations will allow students to learn further information in addition to what was given to them in lecture. "Become a Spice Trader" interactive activity allows students to make decisions about provisioning a ship, which routes to sail, and which products to trade. The outcomes of their answers influence the profits of their venture. Students must discuss the options given to them and work together to come up with what they think will work most successfully just as explorers of the sixteenth and seventeenth century had to do.
 Computer/Internet "Become a Spice Trader" interactive activity. 1. Poster Board 2. Markers 3. Rulers 4. Maps 5. Computers
 Such factors should include, but are not limited to: spheres of cultural influence; wealth; recognizable central authority (both economic and political); motivating ideology; strong military; economic control of foreign territories. The following would be factors to questions: scale; power; rise and fall; time; cultural impact; military dominance; trade; and interchange.
Checking For Understanding:
 In addition to what the students learned during the group presentations, they will read short articles about all three explorers. Following this homework assignment the students will be quizzed on the explorers on Day 4. Once each group has completed the activity we will then discuss the outcome of each group, who was most successful, and why we think that group was most successful.
 1. Read Vasco da Gama: Roun Africa to India, 1497-1498 CE from Modern History Source book. 2. Following the article, students should create their own journal entry. 3. In a two-page journal entry, the students should pretend they are part of a voyage with one of the Portuguese explorers. Discuss the following: motives for their trip, personal items they might have taken on the voyage, fears they faced, weather, activities on the ship, roles they played, etc. This assignment with allow students to further engage in the overall understanding of what it was like to be an explorer during this time, the hardships they faced, and the contributions they ultimately made to create the world we live in today.
 I will divide the room in half and have students go on whichever side they support: empire or no empire. Students can debate their positions and use examples to support defining, or not defining, Portugal as an "empire"

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