Ch 19: NES: First Contacts in the Americas

About This Chapter

Watch these lessons to review the history of pre-Columbian Native American civilizations and the effects of first contact with Europeans, as part of your preparations for the NES: Middle Grades Social Science exam.

NES: First Contacts in the Americas - Chapter Summary

In these short, engaging and mobile-device friendly lesson videos, our professional instructors will discuss the origins of the Native American civilizations, the height of their civilizations, the effects of first contact with Europeans and the conquests of New Spain. Follow along with our instructors to prepare for questions on the National Evaluation Series (NES): Middle Grades Social Science exam regarding:

  • The origins of the early people in the Americas
  • Pre-Columbian civilizations in North and South America
  • Effects of European colonization on Native American populations
  • Spanish explorers and the colonies of New Spain

You can take a quiz after watching each lesson. Improve your understanding of the material by using the video tags to return to parts of the videos that covered any topics you didn't master. If you develop a question about any of these topics, be sure to send it to our instructors so that they can help you understand the material.

NES: First Contacts in the Americas Objectives

The NES: Middle Grades Social Science exam is used to measure the mastery of prospective middle grades social science teachers over their field of study. To accomplish this task, the computer-based exam asks test-takers 150 multiple-choice questions in a 180-minute testing session. When you take this computer-based certification exam, expect half of the material covered by these questions to belong to the content domain of History. The material covered in this chapter will help you reinforce your understanding of pre-Columbian American civilizations and the impact of first contact with the Europeans.

5 Lessons in Chapter 19: NES: First Contacts in the Americas
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
Native American History: Origins of Early People in the Americas

1. Native American History: Origins of Early People in the Americas

Because the first humans and civilizations got their start in Africa and the Middle East, historians and anthropologists have had to figure out how Native Americans got to the Americas. In this lesson we look at the three prevailing theories of the earliest migration to the New World.

The Inca Civilization and Pizarro: Pre-Columbian South America

2. The Inca Civilization and Pizarro: Pre-Columbian South America

The Incan Empire was an amazing empire of the early Americas. Their accomplishments rival those of many other great empires, but they were defeated by the Spanish conquistador Francisco Pizarro in only a few years.

Pre-Columbian Civilization: North American Indians Before Europeans

3. Pre-Columbian Civilization: North American Indians Before Europeans

Watch this video for an overview of the cultural groups of Native Americans as they lived at the time of first contact with Europeans. Some of these groupings, like the tribes of the plains, changed so much due to the addition of European influences, such as horses, that there is only conjecture as to how exactly they lived before European contact.

Effects of European Colonization: Christopher Columbus and Native Americans

4. Effects of European Colonization: Christopher Columbus and Native Americans

The earliest explorers in the Western Hemisphere left a legacy that would shape the development of the Americas permanently. No matter what they came looking for, Europeans left behind death, horses, and metal.

New Spain: Spanish Explorers and Spanish Colonies

5. New Spain: Spanish Explorers and Spanish Colonies

Who are the most well-known explorers and conquistadors of the New World? In this lesson, we'll look at some of the most infamous explorers. We'll discover the difference between explorers and conquistadors, and then learn about the encomienda system.

Chapter Practice Exam
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Practice Final Exam
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