Project 1: Cabot 500 Research Project

  General Information

School: Holy Cross Elementary
Holyrood, NF
A0A 2R0
Tel. 709-229-3939
Fax. 709-229-7266
Grade Level: Grades 4 - 6
No. of Students: 25
Project Start and Finish Dates: January, 1998 - June, 1998

  Project Overview

This project will involve students from grades four to six. The school will undertake a whole school project on John Cabot. It will be a research project broken down into sub topics.

Students will use the Internet to locate information about John Cabot, his life and his voyage to Newfoundland. Students will also become familiar with the Cabot 500 Celebrations.

There will be 25 students involved in this project from Grades 4, 5, and 6. There will be five students from Grade 4, 10 each from Grades five and six. This is an enrichment project involving students who need to be challenged.

This project is scheduled to begin in January, 1998 and continue until June, 1998.

The outline for the project is as follows:

  1. Was was John Cabot?
    Where did he live?
    Give a brief history of his life before he became an explorer.
  2. When did he begin to travel?
    What were his intentions when he started his voyage?
    Were there other trips besides the one he made to Newfoundland?
    What do we know about these trips?
  3. Describe in detail the voyage which took John Cabot and his crew to Newfoundland.
    How many people travelled with him?
    What kind of boat did they use? (Illustrate)
    What was the name of the boat?
    Describe any events which occurred during the voyage.
    Where did they think they were when they arrived in Newfoundland?
    Illustrate a map outlining the path the took from Bristol, England to Newfoundland.
  4. How do we know that John Cabot really arrived in Newfoundland?
    Describe Newfoundland the way John Cabot described it.
  5. Why are we having so much celebrating this year in honor of John Cabot?
    What type of celebrations are being planned?
    Where are the celebrations taking place?
    Give a schedule of the celebrations.
    What is the expected benefits of these celebrations on Newfoundland?

  Curriculum Connections

The Grade 5 Social Studies Program is an indepth study of the province of Newfoundland and Labrador. The discovery of our province is covered as well as the history of Newfoundland and Labrador. A discussion of how Newfoundland got its name and how our cultural has changed over the years could most definitely be an integral part of this project and woud easily tie in with the Grade Five Social Studies program.

Art - The way Newfoundland looked when John Cabot came here is certainly different in many ways from how it appears today. However, we have kept our history alive through our many famous artists. A study of Newfoundland artists would be a beneficial way for students to study the evolution of our culture. This could be extended to include music and Newfoundland Literature.

Technology Education - Students are generally not familiar with using the Internet. This would give them some hands on experience with using the Internet to find information through a variety of sources. They would learn how to access different Newsgroups, Net Search, and Curriculum Resources on line.

Map Skills - Students could trace the route John Cabot took to get from Bristol, England to Newfoundland. They could find different routes he could have taken and determine the difference in distance. Students could also list other ways we could travel to Bristol today that weren't available when John Cabot's voyage was made. Students could also determine the longest and shortest routes to take to get from Bristol, England to Bonavista, Newfoundland.

Language Arts - The project will include many Language Arts skills:

  1. Research skills
  2. Reading and rewording information
  3. Transferring what is read to writing
  4. Reading and finding the main idea.
  5. Cooperative Learning - Working in a group.


The student performance during this project will be evaluated mainly through teacher observation of the interest each child shows in working on the project. Teachers will take anecdotal records while observing how much work each person contributes toward the project. Teachers will check each goal informally to determine whether or not they have been met.

An important objective of this undertaking is to help students learn to work cooperatively in groups and to show clarity and confidence in the presentation of their work to other groups of students.

Time will be allotted to teach research skills to the students involved in this project. They must learn to read and interpret material from the Internet and how will they learn to do this will be part of the evaluation.

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