Classroom Activities: 4-8

Minnesota State Standards: In grades 4 through 8, students are introduced to a disciplinary focus with a "lead discipline” that frames the social studies for that grade level. (The lead discipline for each grade level is described below.) Core concepts from the other three disciplines provide complementary perspectives that promote an integrated understanding of the content. Although there are designated lead and supporting disciplines, the importance of integration should be emphasized: One cannot truly understand history content, for example, without considering the relevant economic, political and geographic factors.

In grade 4, students focus on the Geography of North America. In grade 5, they study the History of North America up to 1800. From this foundation, the context for learning moves from local to global. Beginning with Minnesota Studies in grade 6, students learn about state history and government and Minnesota’s role within the larger context of the country. This is followed by United States Studies in grade 7, when students study the country’s history and government from 1800 to contemporary times. Social studies in the middle grades culminates in the interdisciplinary learning experiences of Global Studies in grade 8. Students apply spatial and chronological perspectives as they study the geography of the world’s regions and contemporary world history.

The voyage of Edward Terry can be incorporated into the general narrative of history presented to students in grades four through eight. The Age of Exploration and Terry’s role in it, although inherently Eurocentric, extends to the study of North America, Asia, and Africa. By considering how Terry views the relationship between religion, geography, and history, students will be able to understand how people in the past necessarily had different perceptions that informed how they saw the world. Students can build this historical empathy while simultaneously learning about history and geography during the Age of Exploration. Furthermore, Terry’s interactions with the Portuguese and native African populations provide a compelling case study against which to judge English expansion into North America.

Questions to consider:

  • What interests Terry during the course of his voyage?
  • What is the relationship between Christianity and Africa according to Terry?
  • Draw a map of Africa according to Edward Terry’s description. What animals, natural phenomena, and people would you find there?