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Christopher Columbus ships

Explorers – Teacher Resources

Utilize these printables, lessons, and activities to teach your students about the many explorers who have contributed to society. From voyages across the Atlantic to missions in space, these diverse figures transcended social and physical boundaries and changed how we view our world. You'll find plenty of resources for Columbus Day in October and everything you need to integrate this cross-curricular topic into classes on math, language arts, science, history, geography, or art.

Whiteboard Compatible Mini-Lessons

Explorers of North America Mini-Lesson
20th-Century Explorers Mini-Lesson
More Mini-Lessons


Davy Crockett Biography: A Reading Warm-Up
The Story of Columbus Day
Learn About Lewis and Clark
All About Early Explorers
Daniel Boone Biography: A Reading Warm-Up
Explorations and Explorers
Explorers' Routes
More Popular Explorers Printables

Lesson Plans

Chart Columbus's Voyages
Exploring Explorers
Map Making, Floor Plans & Map Reading
Modified Orienteering
Wonders of the World
More Explorer Lesson Plans


Famous Explorers Quiz
Early America Quiz
Explorers Quiz
Women Adventurers Quiz

Explorer Biographies

Nonfiction Reading Warm-Up: Sacagawea Biography
Explorer Research Project
Columbus Sails the Ocean Blue
William Bradford Biography
Just Where Was Columbus?
Ferdinand Magellan
Three African-Americans in the Far West
Matthew Henson, Explorer
Sacagawea Biography: A Nonfiction Reading Warm-Up
James Cook
Peary, Henson, and the North Pole
Thor Heyerdahl Biography

Language Arts Activities

The Tempest
Pedro's Journal Literature Guide
Wonders of the World Questions
Columbus Word Search
The Discovery of America
Daily Journal Topics: Exceptional Explorers
Mount Everest Timeline
Exploring Explorers Vocabulary
Who Writes History? Rethinking Columbus Day
Columbus Wasn't First
Grant for Christopher Columbus, 1492
Myths About Explorers
Reading Warm-Up 42 for Gr. 5 & 6: American History
My Explorer Report About...
Reading Warm-Up 45 for Gr. 5 & 6: American History
Reading Warm-Up 44 for Gr. 5 & 6: American History
Kingfisher Young Knowledge: Maps and Mapping Teacher's Guide
Explorers of North America Word Power
20th-Century Explorers Word Power

Digital Books

Eyewitness: Explorer
Eye Wonder: Explorer

Geography Activities

Christopher Columbus Facts
Christopher Columbus' Journey
Explorers of North and South America
Columbus Day Activities
Columbus's Voyages
Where Was Columbus?
Pilgrims Meet the New World
More Geography Activities

Art Activities

Native American Indian Crafts
Explorer's Ship
Set Design for "Pilgrims of Plymouth"
Cork Ship Mobile

Math Activities

Columbus Day - Four Voyages
Columbus's Magic Sail
Get Ready to Sail

Space Exploration Resources

The Great Space Race
How Does a Reflecting Telescope Work?
A Day in Space Sub Kit (Grades 5-6)
One Small Step and Mission to the Moon
How Does a Refracting Telescope Work?
The First Man in Space
Space Explorations
More Popular Space Exploration Resources

Columbus Day Resources

Favorite Columbus Day Activities Slideshow
Columbus's First Voyage to the New World
Explorers Word Search
The History of Columbus Day
Columbus Discovers a New World
Christopher Columbus, A Space Pioneer
Columbus's Discovery Maze
More Columbus Day Teacher Resources
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Do your students love videos? We have a growing collection of videos (including related activities) for holidays and events, including: women's history, Memorial Day, Independence Day, slavery & the Civil War, U.S. Presidents, handwashing awareness, the Common Core, American History, and the environment. Enjoy!

May Calendar of Events
May is full events that you can incorporate into your standard curriculum. Our Educators' Calendar outlines activities for each event, including: Backyard Games Week (5/18-25), Buy a Musical Instrument Day (5/22), and Memorial Day (5/25). Plus, celebrate Asian-Pacific-American Heritage Month, Inventors Month, Physical Fitness & Sports Month, and Water Safety Month!

Teaching with Comics: Galactic Hot Dogs
Reach reluctant readers and English-language learners with comics! Our original teaching guides to the Galactic Hot Dogs comic series (chapters 1-4 and 5-8), as found on Funbrain.com, will take students on a cosmic adventure while engaging their creative minds. Plus, find even more activities for teaching with comics, featuring many other classic stories.

Now available: Galactic Hot Dogs in print! Buy it at bookstores now.

Poptropica Teaching Guides
Poptropica is one of the Internet's most popular sites for kids—and now it's available as an app for the iPad! It's not just a place to play games; each of the islands featured on the site provides a learning opportunity. Check out our teaching guides to four of Poptropica's islands: 24 Carrot Island, Time Tangled Island, Mystery Train Island, and Mythology Island.