Explorer Trading Card Assessment

We are furiously wrapping up our explorers unit because this year our quarter ends at winter break. Probably not the best time to assess...

Through our explorers unit, I have been making explorer trading cards for each person that we study. I got the free template from {Ginger Snaps}. I easily added pictures of the explorers that we covered.

Then I did a timeline along my ceiling to show how the clustered during the appropriately-named Age of Exploration.

Back to the trading cards. To assess the students (and pull in some CCSS), I asked them to assign a value to each explorer, much like a sports collector might assign a value to a baseball card. We talked about how baseball cards were valued (rookie card, MVP, great stats, etc.) and talked about how that might translate to explorers. When they assigned a value, they had to give me an explanation on why that decided on that value. As I circulated, I heard some really great conversations about the explorers' contributions to history. I also heard conversations about how they shouldn't be ranked on how attractive they were (I kid you not - every time I handed out a new card, some of the kids would comment about his attractiveness...) or if the students liked them or not (ie. Columbus, Cortes, and Pizarro).

I was very impressed with their focus on this particular project, and I will definitely revisit this assessment next year.



  1. Diane this is great thanks for sharing! We just finished our explorer unit, but I think I will try this out next year.

    Fifth Grade Wit and

  2. We switch units every other year, and explorers are on the docket for next year so I'll definitely be stealing this idea when the time comes. I can see my kids really getting into collecting the cards as we go through the unit.

    Sweet Rhyme – Pure Reason
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  3. I am one of your newest followers! Love your blog!



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