The Age of Exploration, Discovery and Expansion Unit Plan

Unit Plan

The Age of Exploration, Discovery and Expansion Unit Plan

5 x Lessons |1 x Assessment | Suitable for Grade: 4

This History unit covers a range of concepts relating to the early explorers of the Age of Exploration and the ‘discovery’ of Australia.

It consists of 5 lessons of approximately 60 minutes duration.

The sequence of lessons and suggested time frames should be regarded as a guide only; teachers should pace lessons in accordance with the individual learning needs of their class.

An assessment task for monitoring student understanding of the unit objectives is included and may require additional lessons.

 Overview

Objectives

  • To understand why the fifteenth century was known as the Age of Exploration.
  • To investigate the exploration of the Chinese during the fifteenth century.
  • To identify how the Spanish, Portuguese and Dutch explorers contributed to the European 'discovery' of Australia.
  • To investigate the significance of James Cook's voyage to Australia.
  • To examine the myth that Australia was a Terra Nullius land before contact with the British.

Preparing for Learning

This History unit provides excellent opportunities for cross-curricular integration. Look for ways to meaningfully integrate the content of the unit with other learning areas e.g. Literacy, Numeracy, The Arts.

Prior to commencing the unit, create a classroom display which celebrates the history of the Age of Exploration. Display teaching resources that will stimulate the students’ interest and assist in their learning, such as the Early Explorers Word Wall and Captain Cook Word WallFor examples of additional teaching resources to display in your classroom, browse the Early Explorers Collection on the Teach Starter website.

Some of the resources which accompany this unit plan will need to be prepared prior to teaching. For this reason, it is advised that teachers browse through all lessons before commencing the unit.

 Lessons

60 minutes
Lesson 1

Terra Australis Incognita

A 60 minute lesson in which students will understand why the fifteenth century was known as the Age of Exploration.

View Lesson

60 minutes
Lesson 2

Chinese Exploration

A 60 minute lesson in which students will investigate the exploration of the Chinese during the fifteenth century.

View Lesson

60 minutes
Lesson 3

Spanish, Portuguese and Dutch Explorers

A 60 minute lesson in which students will identify how the Spanish, Portuguese and Dutch explorers contributed to the European 'discovery' of Australia.

View Lesson

60 minutes
Lesson 4

James Cook and His Voyage to Australia

A 60 minute lesson in which students will investigate the significance of James Cook's voyage to Australia.

View Lesson

60 minutes
Lesson 5

The Myth of Terra Nullius

A 60 minute lesson in which students will examine the myth that Australia was a Terra Nullius land before contact with the British.

View Lesson

60 minutes
Lesson 6 (Assessment)

Early Explorers Assessment Task

An inquiry-based assessment task in which students will demonstrate an understanding of the Age of Exploration and how the journeys of explorers impacted upon other societies.

View Assessment

  NSW Curriculum alignment

  Australian Curriculum alignment


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