Cannons, sword fights, and sailors; the first thing that came to mind when I read our latest project’s name. However, despite the movie on piracy we watched at the beginning of the project (Captain Phillips), I was quick to discover “Arghh, Matey!” is less about piracy and more about sailors and exploration. These past few weeks, we have discussed the Age of Exploration, the three G’s, as well as cause and consequence; all three of which connect to this project’s driving question:

“What was the impact of global exploration?”

The Age of Exploration took place shortly before the Renaissance, between 1450-1700. During this time, people began to travel east by land, bringing back various goods on their journey. Many merchants lived off of the “gold” they made in business. Spices and silk were the most popular among the items that Europeans of this time desired. The path that was commonly used for this type of travel was called “the Silk Road”. 

People of this time were not only motivated to travel by business, but also the three G’s: Gold, Glory, and God.

Quite like today, people during the Age of Exploration yearned for gold, or in other words, wealth. Many rulers began to fund various journeys and projects in hopes of earning more money altogether. Merchants lived off of the buying and selling of items outside of Europe. During this time, capitalism was on the rise.

During this time, fame and glory began to become much more desirable between rulers, sailors, and individuals. This is because of the innovation of the printing press. Word began to “get around” not only through speech, but also print. Competition between kings and queens multiplied. However, there was not only glory to the King and individuals, but also to God.

Christianity was a widespread belief amongst people during the Middles Ages, similar to today. Some also believe that their Faith is their purpose, and that they must spread the word of God… or in other words, convert people to Christianity. Exploring provided the opportunity to meet people and convert them. Following the discovery of the “New World”, missionaries tried to convert Aboriginal peoples to Christianity, mostly in vain.

The idea of “cause and consequence” approach the causing factors of events as well as what the after effects of those events were.  To strengthen our understanding of cause and consequence, we were given the opportunity to plan out a story of our own. 

Afterwards, we used an app named “AR Maker” to make the story come to life. I wrote my story about the damage inflicted upon Earth through landfill. You can watch my video here.

The making of this video also prepared us for our final task, in which we were to use the “story spine” in order to show our understanding of the consequences of global exploration. Using the notes I took during class, I first planned out my story using a story spine chart. Then, I wrote my script in greater detail. Afterwards, I only had to draw my AR objects, then record the video. 

You can watch the video here:

There were three Curricular Competencies for this project: 

  • Discussing, Listening, and Speaking: Can I demonstrate appropriate speaking skills?

Appropriate speaking skills would entail a vocabulary, volume, and tone suitable for the situation. In this case, “the situation” was our AR maker video. My script was carefully planned out, but I believe the presentation itself could have been better. I had a tendency to stutter at parts, and I think that I should have spoken more clearly.

  • Analyze Cause and Consequence: Who or what influenced events to occur and what were the consequences of those events?

As mentioned prior, cause and consequence are the factors that cause certain events, and the repercussions of said event. To analyze means to develop an understanding through drawing conclusions from evidence. In this case, I talked about the consequence of racism and suffering that was influenced by Christopher Columbus after he “discovered” the Americas.

  • Empowered Learner: Can I use technology appropriately and effectively to construct knowledge? 

This is a competency that has been used in the past for other projects, such as our “How it’s Going… How it Started” project. In PLP(Performance Learning Program), we make use of technology in nearly all of our tasks. However, it is important to distinguish the difference between using technology, and using technology efficiently to represent knowledge. An Empowered Learner would show their learning through the technology available to them.

I feel that although it was difficult at times, I did well on making use of technology for this project. However, I do think I could have represented my knowledge in a much more thorough manner for my final AR video. 

Global exploration has greatly impacted the lives of both people of the past and the present. There are a number of factors that have resulted due to the Age of Exploration, albeit I believe that racism is the most prominent consequence, even today. Slavery and human trafficking were the cause of suffering for many. Exploration during the 1400s-1700s was motivated by many variables, but Gold, Glory, and God were three of the most common motivators… or in other words, “causes”.

Thanks for reading! Stay tuned for my next post on our current project, “The More Things Change”!