Thematic Units - Explorers


You will find various Lesson Plans on the top portion of this page.
Further down, you will find Web Sites.
At the bottom of the page, you will find Books that you can order directly from!

Lesson Plans

A Journal of Discovery Grades Various
In this activity, students, turn a scientific eye on their own neighborhoods and make their own "discoveries."

An Adventure to the New World Grades Middle School
Students create an "Explorer's Notebook" as they learn about explorers from the 15th and 16th centuries. Includes a hot list of Internet sites students can explore!

The Discovery of the Americas: A Play About Early Explorers Grades Elementary
A hands on approach to teach students about everyone from the Stone Age Hunters to Magellan.

Explorer Interviews Grades 5-8
Students will work in pairs researching an explorer and then interview each other.

Explorer Projects Grades 5-8
Resources to use with your students, including a rubric.

Explorer Report Grades Various
A complete guide and assessment to a explorer report.

Follow an Explorer Grades 5-8
A printable worksheet that guides students in completing a project about an explorer. Students research the explorer's personal background, route, and transportation.

Lessons of the Explorers Grades K-12
A great number of lessons and resources from Education Planet.

The Indian's Discovery of Columbus Grades 2-5
This unit presents the conquest of Mexico and the downfall of the Aztec empire from the perspective of the Aztec "Indians" themselves.

Voyage of Doom Grades 5-12
From PBS, a website about the excavation of French explorer Robert Cavelier Sieur de la Salle's ship, the La Belle. Click on Teacher's Guide for classroom activities. Designed for use with PBS programming, but adaptable.

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Web Sites

Exploration and Discovery
Australian Explorers Grades 4-12
"In 1788, with the arrival of the first fleet, little was known about this wide brown land which we now call Australia." Learn about the first people to explore this wonderful continent.

Daniel Boone, Lewis & Clark and Zebulon Pike Grades Various
A great Quizlet to learn about these explorers.

Dive and Discover Grades 3-12
Explore the wonders of the ocean floor. The site contains information about current expeditions and you are able to read daily updates.

Empire of the Bay Grades 5-12
"The story of the shrewd merchants and bold explorers of the Hudson's Bay Company, who tamed a wilderness and opened up the heart of North America." This is a great site based on the PBS broadcast. You can find lesson plans, a timeline, a quiz, maps, and much more.

Explorer Poems Grades 1-5
Here is a collection of poems authored by a 5th grade class. They are not only fun to read, but they also contain a great deal of information about the specific explorer.

Explorers of North America Grades Intermediate
Online games that review European explorers of North America and what they discovered.

Exploring the West From Monticello Home Grades 5-12
A great resource on information about the expedition of Lewis & Clark. You can also find information of the exploration of the West.

Florida of the Conquistador Grades 5-12
Gold! Glory! God! Learn about the Spanish exploration of Florida. Find detailed information on Ponce de Leon, de Naravaez, de Soto and de Luna. There are several other links related to this subject.

Glossary About the Arctic Grades 5-12
An incredible collection of resources and information that relate to the interesting Arctic environment.

Liftoff to Space Exploration Grades 3-12
Find out what the past, present and future of space exploration has to offer.

Lunar Exploration Grades 5-12
Find a timeline, details about various lunar missions and excellent photos.

Meeting of Frontiers Grades 8-12
This is a "bilingual, multimedia English-Russian digital library that tells the story of the American exploration and settlement of the West, the parallel exploration and settlement of Siberia and the Russian Far East, and the meeting of the Russian-American frontier in Alaska and the Pacific Northwest."

The Polynesian Voyaging Society (PVS) Grades 5-12
The PVS was founded in 1973 to research how Polynesian seafarers discovered and settled nearly every inhabitable island in the Pacific Ocean before European explorers arrived in the 16th century. Learn about what they discovered.

South Grades 4-12
By clicking on "Exploration of Antarctica" you will find the following: a timeline, information about the explorers, maps, and US programs.

Zoom Explorers Grades 4-12
This incredible site is a must visit! It provides information about the explorers by world regions, century, and by their individual names.

Balboa, Vasco Nunez de Grades 5-12
Learn about the journeys of this Spanish explorer, along with with other valuable links.

Cook, Captain James Grades 5-12
Cook is known as the "... the ablest and most renowned navigator this or any country that produced. He possessed all the qualifications requisite for his profession and great undertakings ..." Learn all about the voyages of Captain Cook.

Drake, Sir Francis Grades 5-12
These pages are focused on Sir Francis Drake, and in particular on his "Famous Voyage" - the circumnavigation of the world in the sixteenth century, during the reign of Queen Elizabeth.

Hudson, Henry - Explorer of the Hudson River Grades 5-12
Set out on his ship, the Half Moon, Hudson was looking for a quick way from England to the "islands of spicery". Learn more about his journey.

Kino, Father Eusebio Francisco Grades 5-12
Learn more about the early Spanish explorer that established various missions in the New World.

Lewis & Clark's HistoricTrail Grades 5-8
Find detailed information about this duo's great expedition. The site provides: maps, a timeline, sample journal entries, and much more.

Lost in the Grand Canyon Grades 5-12
This PBS site is based on the "American Experience" film. Learn about Joseph Wesley Powell's adventure.

Verrazzano, Giovanni da Grades 5-12
Learn more about the man who explored the east coast of what is now the United States in 1525 and is best known for being the discoverer of New York Harbor and for mistaking Pamlico Sound for the Pacific.

Various Web Resources
Latitude - The Science of Sailing the WorldGrades 5-12
Learn how the explorers of the 1400's navigated their way across the world.

Origins of the Compass Rose Grades 6-12
This symbol has been included on maps since the 1300's.

Ships of Discovery Research Grades 5-12
Learn much more about the ships of the early explorers.

The European Explorers Grades Upper Elementary
Kidport resources about the explorers and their countries.

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A Long and Uncertain Journey: The 27,000 Mile Voyage of Vasco Da Gama (Great Explorers)
by Joan Elizabeth Goodman

A Picture Book of Christopher Columbus
by David A. Adler

The Adventures of the Great Explorers (Megascope Series)
by Hubert Ben Kemoun

DK Readers: Antarctic Adventure, Exploring the Frozen Continent (Level 4: Proficient Readers)
by Meredith Hooper

Around the World in a Hundred Years : From Henry the Navigator to Magellan
by Jean Fritz

Aztecs, Mayas and Incas Mbu (Ladybird Explorers Plus)
by Fiona MacDonald

Beyond the Sea of Ice : Voyages of Henry Hudson (Great Explorers Book, 1)
by Joan Elizabeth Goodman

Cabeza De Vaca : New World Explorer
by Keith Brandt

Cajun Columbus
by Alice Hughes

Captain Cook : The Great Ocean Explorer (What's Their Story)
by Haydn Middleton

Cartier : Jacques Cartier in Search of the Northwest Passage (Exploring the World)
by Jean F. Blashfield

Christopher Columbus (In Their Own Words (Paper))
by Peter Roop

Christopher Columbus and the First Voyages to the New World (World Explorers Series)
by Stephen C. Dodge

Columbus : & the Renaissance Explorers (Great Explorer Series)
by Colin Hynson

Columbus and the World Around Him
by Milton Meltzer

Conquerors & Explorers (Fact or Fiction)
by Stewart Ross

Daniel Boone and the Exploration of the Frontier (Explorers of the New World)
by Richard Kozar

Drake & the 16Th-Century Explorers (Great Explorer Series)
by J. A. Guy

by C. Keith Wilbur

Encounter (Voyager Books)
by Jane Yolen

Exploration of Africa (Great Explorers Series)
by Colin Hynson

Exploration of North America (Great Explorers Series)
by Shirley Greenway

The Explorers
by Scott Ciencin

Explorers (Fandex Family Field Guides)
by Steven M. L. Aronson

Explorers and Discoverers
by Neil Grant

Explorers and Traders
by Claire Craig

Explorers : From Columbus to Armstrong (Famous Lives)
by Felicity Everett

Explorers of North America (True Books: American History)
by Brendan January

Explorers on the Moon (Adventures of Tintin)
by Herge

Explorers to the New World
by Shirley Jordon

Explorers: Searching for Adventure
Audio Cassette

Explorers Who Got Lost
by Diane Sansevere-Dreher

Explorers (Women in Profile Series)
by Carlotta Hacker

Exploring North America (Voyages of Discovery)
by Jacqueline Morley

Ferdinand Magellan : And the First Voyage Around the World (Explorers of the New World)
by Jim Gallagher

Five Brave Explorers (Great Black Heroes, Hello Reader (Level 3))
by Wade Hudson

Francisco Coronado and the Exploration of the American Southwest (Explorers of the New World)
by Hal Marcovitz

Francisco Pizarro and the Conquest of the Inca (Explorers of the New World)
by Gina Deangelis

From Coronado to Escalante : The Explorers of the Spanish Southwest (World Explorers)
by John Miller Morris

Good-bye for Today : The Diary of a Young Girl at Sea
by Connie Roop

Great Explorers
by Eric Tomb

Henry Hudson : Ill-Fated Explorer of North America's Coast (Explorers of New Worlds)
by Barbara Saffer

Hernando Cortes and the Conquest of Mexico (Explorers of the New World)
by Gina De Angelis

Hernando De Soto (Groundbreakers)
by Ruth Manning

Hernando De Soto and the Exploration of Florida (Explorers of the New World)
by Jim Gallagher

The History News: Explorers
by Michael Johnstone

In 1492
by Jean Marzollo

The Island-Below-The-Star
by James Rumford

Jacques Cartier and the Exploration of Canada (Explorers of New Worlds)
by Daniel E. Harmon

Jacques Cousteau and the Undersea World (Explorers of New Worlds)
by Roger King

James Cook and the Exploration of the Pacific (Explorers of New Worlds)
by Charles J. Shields

John Cabot : The Rediscovery of North America (Explorers of New Worlds)
by Charles J. Shields

The Journal of Augustus Pelletier : The Lewis and Clark Expedition (My Name Is America)
by Kathryn Lasky

The Journal of Etienne Mercier : Queen Charlotte Islands, 1853
by Dave Bouchard

Juan Ponce De Leon : And the Search for the Fountain of Youth (Explorers of the New World)
by Dan Harmon

LA Salle and the Exploration of the Mississippi (Explorers of New Worlds)
by Daniel E. Harmon

The Lamp, the Ice, and the Boat Called Fish
by Jacqueline Briggs Martin

Lewis and Clark : Explorers of the American West
by Steven Kroll

Marco Polo and the Wonders of the East (Explorers of the New World)
by Hal Marcovitz

Meet Christopher Columbus (Step-Up Biographies)
by John Edens

Meriwether Lewis : Boy Explorer (Childhood of Famous Americans)
by Charlotta M. Bebenroth

My Name Is York
by Elizabeth Van Steenwyk

National Geographic World Atlas for Young Explorers
by Ngs Cartographer

The Naturalist's Handbook : Activities for Young Explorers
by Lynn Kuntz

The New York Public Library Amazing Explorers : A Book of Answers for Kids (New York Public Library Answer Book for Kids series)
by Brendan January

Pedro's Journal : A Voyage with Christopher Columbus August 3, 1492-February 14, 1493
by Pam Conrad

Questions and Answers About Explorers (Questions and Answers About)
by Christopher Maynard

Robert Peary : The Quest for the North Pole (Explorers of New Worlds)
by Daniel E. Harmon

Sacagawea : Guide for the Lewis and Clark Expedition (Explorers of New Worlds)
by Hal Marcovitz

Shipwrecks of the Explorers (Watts Library: Shipwrecks)
by KC Smith

Sir Francis Drake and the Foundation of a World Empire (Explorers of New Worlds)
by Jim Gallagher

Space Explorers (Magic School Bus Chapter Book, 4)
by Eva Moore

Spirit of Endurance : The True Story of the Shackleton Expedition to the Antarctic
by Jennifer Armstrong

Streams to the River, River to the Sea
by Scott O'Dell

The Travels of John and Sebastian Cabot (Explorers and Exploration)
by Joanne Mattern

Trial by Ice : A Photobiography of Sir Ernest Shackleton
by K. M. Kostyal

The Usborne Book of Discovery : Inventors/Scientists/Explorers/3 Books in 1
by Struan Reid

Vasco Da Gama : And the Portuguese Explorer (Explorers of the New World)
by Jim Gallagher

Vasco Nunez De Balboa : The Discovery of the South Sea (Explorers of New Worlds)
by Hal Marcovitz

The Very First Thanksgiving : Pioneers on the Rio Grande
by Bea Bragg

The Viking Explorers (Explorers of New Worlds)
by Jim Gallagher

Websters New World Dictionary for Explorers of Language
by Michael Agnes

by William Durbin

Young Christopher Columbus : Discoverer of the New Worlds (First-Start Biographies)
by Eric Carpenter

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