Tuesday, February 21, 2006

The Mission Project

My son is in 4th grade, and all Californian parents know what that means--the dreaded "Mission Project."

For those of you outside of California, allow me to explain. California history is taught in the 4th grade, and one of the major topics, right up there with the Gold Rush, is the string of 21 Catholic missions that run from San Diego in the south to San Rafael (north of San Francisco) in the north. The time span studied is from the late 1700s until the missions were "secularized" (sold off because the Mexican government, independent of Spain, could no longer afford to maintain them), a process that occurred prior to the Gold Rush in 1849.

My son was born a few miles from Mission San Jose, located not in San Jose but in Fremont, so we requested that he be assigned this mission. Today he and I drove the 2+ hours to go see it so that he'll have a better understanding of what he's writing about when he works on his report.


elementaryhistoryteacher said...

In Georgia we teach the mission system at 4th grade as well as we cover the Spanish influence in North America. I enjoyed seeing your pictures. I wish I had a real mission close by to take my students. As a 4th grade teacher I appreciate you taking your child to see what he was reporting on. Too many parents do the research themselves, copy pages of the internet, and glue them to a postboard.

Darren said...

Thank you for your kind words. Perhaps you'll like this post as well: