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Teacher Gazette

No. 2

 Ships and Navigation
Teaching Strategy

Beginning in the 13th century, advancements in navigational tools and scientific methods made travel by ship more exact and safer; however, by the early 18th century, ships still lost their way frequently. In this problem-based lesson, students read about the Scilly naval disaster of 1707, determine its causes, and then choose and explain which navigational tools might have prevented the disaster. More

Primary Source
Detail from Portolan Chart The Library of Congress 
Portolan charts, also called harbour-finding charts, are navigational maps based on compass directions and estimated distances observed by mariners. Created in Italy in 1590 by Joan Oliva, this chart was used to help mariners guide their ships around the coast of western Europe and the northwest coast of Africa. More
For more information 
"He [the Captain] is, from the Time of his going on board, to keep a Journal, according to the Form set down... and to be careful to note therein all Occurences, viz. Place where the ship is at Noon; changes of Wind and Weather; Salutes, with the Reasons thereof; Remarks on Unknown Places; and in general, every Circumstance that concerns the Ship, her Stores, and Provisions.  At the end of every Six months he is to send a Copy of his Journal for the said Time, to the Secretary of the Admiralty..."

Admiralty Naval Instructions of 1731

National Maritime Museum, Royal Museums Greenwich

Colonial Williamsburg Enlightenment Forum
Attend a Colonial Williamsburg Enlightenment Forum and kindle the educational spirit within! Each two-day workshop onsite at Colonial Williamsburg will give participants a chance to delve deeply into the complexities of the past and explore topics ranging from the colonial economy to the founding principles of our nation.  Learn More

HERO's Upcoming Live Broadcast
The Global Economy EFT
October 09, 2014
What we think of as the modern global economy is actually centuries old! Join Maggie, an adventurous rat, as she boards ships using international trade routes to make her way home from England to the American colonies. Along the way, discover the inner workings of the eighteenth-century mercantile system. More

Teacher Tip
HERO Lesson: Primary Sources of the Mercantile Age
by F. Margret Atkinson, middle grades English Language Arts teacher, Louisiana
The Global Economy's second lesson, "Primary Sources from the Mercantile Age,allowed my students to utilize critical reading skills we employ every day, using varied historical documents. I pre-developed questions about the trends students might see from the nine different sources, focusing on the implications of each source. We held a whole class discussion, looking carefully at the date and type of each document, and the complex relationships between the people in the documents. I kept a record of their ideas on the board, scaffolding the conclusions they were making. This made for even richer ideas when we reviewed our comparison chart to conclude the lesson. Subscribe to HERO
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