SECTION 3 ACTIVE LEARNING ASSIGNMENT: Old World or New World?

European Exploration, Perception of the Other, and the Columbian Exchange 

How did the Columbian exchange link worlds?

In this quick activity you get to exercise your legs and your mind.

In the center of the room there will be a collection of index cards with words on them that were involved in the Columbian exchange:

  • Syphilis
  • Tomatoes
  • Smallpox
  • Turkey
  • Measles
  • Corn
  • Tuberculosis
  • Wheat
  • Pineapples
  • Coffee
  • Bananas
  • Hot peppers
  • Horses
  • Pumpkins
  • Pigs
  • Cattle
  • Cacao
  • Tobacco
  • Slaves
  • Rice

On each wall of the classroom there will be a sign that says Old World or New World. Each student should take one card and carry it to the side of the room where it originated. Then, when the professor calls for the exchange, take it to the side of the room where it is introduced thanks to the age of exploration.

What kinds of things crossed the Atlantic? Can we say the exchange was beneficial? What were the negative aspects?