J.Serra and the California Indians
The missions are a large part of history in California. Fourth Graders are informed and assessed on multiple parts of California history. The CA- California K-12 Academic Content Standards for History & Social Science in fourth grade is titled: California: A Changing State. The students are expected to learn the story of their home state, unique in American history in terms of its vast and varied geography, its many waves of immigration beginning with pre-Columbian societies, its continuous diversity, economic energy, and rapid growth. The Sub-Strand 4.2: Students describe the social, political, cultural, and economic life and interactions among people of California from the pre-Columbian societies to the Spanish mission and Mexican rancho periods is a critical standard in the understanding of California history. Students are expected to describe the Spanish exploration and colonization of California, including the relationships among soldiers, missionaries, and Indians, describe the daily lives of the people, native and nonnative, who occupied the presidios, missions, ranchos, and pueblos, as well as discuss the role of the Franciscans in changing the economy of California from a hunter-gatherer economy to an agricultural economy. The papers by Sandos, Castillo, and Ricci give insight into the many different opinions one can formulate on the controversial topic of missions. When teaching the missions it is important to explain the different content provided however one must keep in mind the age of students one is working with and the plausible reactions from their families. The following analysis from the previous papers has given insight to what I can provide my future students. In Gloria Ricci Lothrop’s essay, El Viejo: Serra in Context, she discussed how Junipero Serra and the Franciscans were there for all the right reasons. She also states that Junipero Serra, “given his lifelong commitment to the empire’s...
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