Ch 24: The Age of Exploration High School World History Lesson Plans

About This Chapter

The Age of Exploration chapter of this course is designed to help you plan and teach about this period of global exploration in your classroom. The video lessons, quizzes and transcripts can easily be adapted to provide your lesson plans with engaging and dynamic educational content. Make planning your course easier by using our syllabus as a guide.

Weekly Syllabus

Below is a sample breakdown of The Age of Exploration chapter into a 5-day school week. Based on the pace of your course, you may need to adapt the lesson plan to fit your needs.

DayTopicsKey Terms and Concepts Covered
Monday The New World and gunpowder Why Europeans went to the Americas; history of gunpowder and implications for the future
Tuesday Great explorers and mapping the world Discoveries and goals of great explorers from Spain and Portugal; mapping who owns what, getting around the word, piracy and Mercator map projections
Wednesday The Italian wars and Machiavelli Wars fought over the city-states of Italy and the effects on the papal authority; Machiavelli's views on governing
Thursday Michelangelo and conquistadors A biography and slideshow of popular works by Michelangelo; Spanish conquerors of the New World and the impact of the encomienda system on the native populations
Friday Las Casas and the Ottoman Empire The Verapaz experiment and Valodolid Debate, Las Casas: Defender of the Indians; Overview of the culture and history of the Ottoman Empire, Suleiman

10 Lessons in Chapter 24: The Age of Exploration High School World History Lesson Plans
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
The Old World and New World: Why Europeans Sailed to the Americas

1. The Old World and New World: Why Europeans Sailed to the Americas

This lesson will focus on the Age of Exploration. It will explain the main reasons why Europeans explored the New World. It will highlight their spirit of adventure, the religious desire to see natives converted, and the chance to acquire wealth.

History of Gunpowder and its Effects on the New World

2. History of Gunpowder and its Effects on the New World

This lesson will discuss the history of gun powder and its effect on the New World. It will highlight the development of firearms, as well as the Europeans who used gunpowder to ravage the Americas.

Great Explorers of Spain and Portugal: Aims & Discoveries

3. Great Explorers of Spain and Portugal: Aims & Discoveries

This lesson will focus on the New World explorations of Spain and Portugal. It will list explorers from both of these countries while also highlighting the motivations behind European exploration.

Mapping the World, Seaborne Commerce & Piracy

4. Mapping the World, Seaborne Commerce & Piracy

This lesson will focus on the improvement of maps, the growth of seaborne commerce, and the piracy that occurred during the Age of Exploration. It will also highlight the famous Sea Dogs of England.

The Italian Wars and Weakening of Papal Authority

5. The Italian Wars and Weakening of Papal Authority

This lesson will discuss the Italian Wars and their effects on the Papacy and the political landscape of Italy. It will also highlight the power struggle between France and Spain, which dominated much of 16th century Europe.

Machiavelli and Lessons of the Italian Wars

6. Machiavelli and Lessons of the Italian Wars

This lesson focuses on Machiavelli and his views on governing, specifically pertaining to the actions of rulers. It will also highlight the actions of several countries involved in the Italian Wars of the 15th and 16th centuries.

Michelangelo: Biography and Works

7. Michelangelo: Biography and Works

This lesson will focus on the life and works of Michelangelo. It will discuss his life in Florence, his dealings with the Medici family, his sculpture 'David,' the Sistine Chapel and many other of his awe-inspiring works.

Conquistadors and Encomienda System: Definition & Savaging of the New World

8. Conquistadors and Encomienda System: Definition & Savaging of the New World

This lesson will discuss the conquistadors of the New World. It will highlight Hernan Cortes and Francisco Pizarro. It will also explain the encomienda system and its impact on the native populations.

Las Casas, Valladolid Debate & Converting the New World

9. Las Casas, Valladolid Debate & Converting the New World

This lesson will focus on Las Casas, a Spanish priest who fought for the rights of the native inhabitants of the Americas. It will also highlight the New Laws of 1542 as well as the Valladolid debates.

Suleiman and the Ottoman Empire: History, Culture & Exploits

10. Suleiman and the Ottoman Empire: History, Culture & Exploits

This lesson will focus on Suleiman the Magnificent, ruler of the Ottoman Empire. It will highlight his conquests of Eastern Europe and his wars with the Habsburg Dynasty. It will also discuss the cultural advancements of his rule.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
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Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
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