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California Missions

California Missions


Students will know the history of their chosen mission and the influence of Spain and Catholicism had at that time.

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CA Content Standard & Objective

Grade 4
4.2 Students describe the social, political, cultural, and economic life and interactions
among people of California from the pre-Columbian societies to the Spanish
mission and Mexican rancho periods.
4. Describe the mapping of, geographic basis of, and economic factors in the placement and
function of the Spanish missions; and understand how the mission system expanded the
influence of Spain and Catholicism throughout New Spain and Latin America.


At the end of the assignment, students will know the history of their chosen mission,  where the mission is located and when it was founded. Students will list the functions of the mission; who lived there, what work did they do. Students will explain the influence the missions had of Spain and Catholicism.

Source: California State Board of Education. Adopted by the of Education History–Social Science for California Public Schools California State Board October, 1998 Content Standards Kindergarten Through Grade Twelve California Department of Education. History–Social Science Content Standards for California Public Schools, Kindergarten Through Grade Twelve . Sacramento: Department of Education, 2000. Web. .

Choose a Mission

Go to this website and choose ONE of the missions listed on the page. Click on the link below:

Answer the following questions about the mission you chose.

  1. What mission did you choose?
  2. Where is it located?
  3. When was it founded?

Source: Cowley, Jacqueline, and Lindsay Ogden. "California Missions." : Process. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 May 2014. .

Tell Me About Your Mission

Visit the interactive map below. Find your mission and click on it. Then click the first heading, Native Life, and read the passage.

Answer the following questions:

  1. What group of people lived there? What tribe?
  2. What kind of work did they do?
  3. What kind of activities did they participate in, if any?

Source: "InteractiveMap." InteractiveMap. N.p., n.d. Web. 10 May 2014. .

The Spanish and the CA Missions

Copy the text below beginning with http and ending with .pdf.
Paste in the address bar of a new page and press enter.

Read the first two sections of the worksheet, A Chain of Missions and Life at a Mission.

Answer the following questions:

1. Give one reason why the Spanish wanted to build missions in California.
2. What religion did the Spanish want the Native Americans to convert to?

*A copy of the worksheet is included below


Source: "Summary: Califormia's Missions." Houghton-Mifflin History Social Science. Hougton Mifflin Harcourt. Web. 10 May 2014. .

What did you learn?

After answering the questions from each of the sections above, you should be able to answer the following question:

What impact did the Spanish have on the Native Americans that lived in California? Give an example about your selected mission to support your answer.