Clash of Cultures: Cortes Conquers Moctezuma and the Aztecs

Focus on the main idea of an informational reading article about the conflict between Aztec and European cultures, and the eventual collapse of the native Latin American cultures. After class members read the passage, they answer four comprehension questions that prompt them to use evidence from the text to support its main idea.

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CCSS: Adaptable
Instructional Ideas

  • Print a class set of the reading passage and project the questions onto the board for learners to answer in a reading journal
  • Use during a social studies unit on European explorers or the history of Latin America
  • Have pupils complete the reading assignment at home and come to class to complete the quiz as a check for understanding
  • Pass out two versions of the passage to class members, and have them compare the word choice and sentence structure between the two Lexile® levels
Classroom Considerations

  • Resource is Lexile® 930L and intended for 6th graders; other versions of the reading page are available for other grade levels and Lexile® levels
  • Does not provide an answer key unless learners complete the html version online, which requires a free Newsela account
Pros

  • Multiple versions of the article make it easy to differentiate instruction among several classes or within the same group of students
  • A strong social studies assignment that assesses literacy skills
  • Provides a version in Spanish
Cons

  • None