How long will the unit be taught for?
What are we looking at/doing/investigating?
Following a brief study of colonisation throughout the 14th to 17th centuries, students look at the impact that European arrival had upon the traditional cultures of the Aztecs and Incans. Aspects of that contact, both positive and negative are studied as well as cultural features such as beliefs and customs, food and technology.
Students conclude this unit by learning about the legacy of these peoples for South America and the world, as well as studying a ‘history mystery’ about the lost city of Machu Pichu.
What are we trying to achieve?
We are trying to assist our boys to learn how to use historical sources effectively and to assess them critically. We also want them to be able to explain what colonisation is, some of the motivations for it in the past, as well as show their learning about the cultures and experiences for the Aztecs and the Inca.
How will we measure achievement?
Boys will submit a podcast in the form of a radio program where they will role play as an expert on colonisation in South America and answer specific questions in that role. The task is open-ended and designed to allow the students to demonstrate their learning and be creative at the same time.
The starting audio file (Garageband) for this project is downloadable here. (It's big, so give it time to download)
How does homework fit in the unit?
Homework tasks may include preparation for new concepts to be studied in the classroom such as some set readings, or the completion of class tasks. It is also expected that preparation and recording of the assessment task will be completed as a homework task.
How can you assist your son's studies?
Talk with your son about what he is learning in class. Ask him what the similarities and differences are between the Aztec and Incan cultures. Find out if he can explain the difference between primary and secondary sources and how historians use various sources to learn more about a certain period in time or a certain culture. Look for interesting books and websites on the history of the Inca and the Aztecs together and bookmark them in preparation for the assessment. Offer to review and edit his work as this will give you a good understanding of what he can do, however please make sure it is all his own work.
How can you give us feedback?
Feedback will be supplied to students orally both individually and following whole class tasks. Written feedback will be supplied in response to homework tasks and assignments when appropriate. Parents can contact me on email@example.com to discuss any aspects of this unit or their son's progress.