Spanish and Social Studies

The wonderful thing about social studies is that it is multidisciplinary in nature and thus can incorporate material from many other classes.  Seventh and Eighth period have been learning about the Spanish colonization of the New World with Tuesday being dedicated to the conquest of the Americas, led by Hernando Cortez and Francisco Pizzaro, and Wednesday being dedicated to the social structure created by the Spanish conquerors for their colonies.   

If you were absent, all of this information can be found in section 3.2 of The American Nation textbook.  Read and take notes about section 3.2, then talk to Mr. K about what happened in class that day. 

We learned about the Spanish colonial structure, but now it is time to look at some Spanish vocabulary that can be applied to social studies.  Here are some Spanish words that are useful to know when studying the Spanish colonies in the Americas: 

  • Conquistador – a soldier of the Spanish colonies that fought against the Native Americans.  The conquistadores are the conquerors of the new world. 

Los conquistadores son famosos por su conquista de las Americas.

 Here’s a resource that tells more about them:

  •  cazar – to hunt

La gente cazaban para obtenir comida en Jamestown.  

  • misión – a form of settlement that the Spanish created throughout the Americas.  The main purpose of the missions was to convert the Native Americans to Christianity; they were bases for priest and monks to gather and spread the word of Christianity.
  • encomienda – the land system that te Spanish created in theAmericas.  It was in essence a land grant that allowed the Spanish, peninsulares, to use the Native Americans that lived in that spot of land as slave labor or to tax them as they pleased.
  • pueblo – a town, the center of farming and trade with a plaza in the middle that served as a gathering point for people
  • presidio – a fort where soldiers were stationed

Los soldados vivían en el presidio.  Los mercados y artesanos vivían en el pueblo.

All of these Spanish vocabulary words are useful to know when studying the Spanish colonization of the Americas.