Over 16 million comics and storyboards created

Free!
Pixton Comic & Storyboard Maker

Lesson Plan by Lauren Martin M.Ed.

California Missions

This free, printable Pixton lesson plan brings social studies to life with comics and storyboards.

Make social studies come to life with comics!

Including these awesome activities:
Print All

Featured Layouts

When students complete the activities in this lesson plan, they will use the following comic layout types.

  • Storyboard
  • Mind Map
  • Timeline
  • Poster
  • Graphic Novel

Your students will create amazing images like these in no time!

Pixton Lesson Plan on California Missions
This free, printable Pixton lesson plan brings social studies to life with comics and storyboards.
This free, printable Pixton lesson plan brings social studies to life with comics and storyboards.

Featured Props

California Missions

Student creations come alive with these themed objects – in addition to our library of over 3,000 props!

  • Chicken
    Chicken
  • Church
    Church
  • Cow
    Cow
  • Field
    Field
  • Plant
    Plant
  • River
    River
  • Scythe
    Scythe
  • Ship
    Ship
  • Symbol
    Symbol
  • Tree
    Tree
Print this Teacher Guide

Teacher Guide

California Missions

Step 1Class discussion with students

Getting Started

Consider sharing the specific timeline of California Missions with students: Father Junipero Serra founded nine missions including the first one in California:

  • 1769: San Diego
  • 1770: San Carlos de Monterey (Carmel)
  • 1771: San Antonio de Padua and San Gabriel
  • 1772: San Luis Obispo
  • 1776: San Francisco (Dolores) and San Juan Capistrano
  • 1777: Santa Clara
  • 1782: San Buena Ventura

After Serra's death, twelve new missions were founded:

  • 1786: Santa Barbara
  • 1787: La Purisima
  • 1791: Santa Cruz and Soledad
  • 1797: San Jose, San Juan Bautista, San Miguel and San Fernando Rey
  • 1798: San Luis Rey de Francia
  • 1804: Santa Ines
  • 1817: San Rafael Arcangel
  • 1823: San Francisco de Solano

Opening Discussion

Review the following information about the California Missions:

  • What: A mission is a church that is built to convert locals to Christianity, in this case, Catholicism.
  • Where: 21 Spanish Missions were founded across 500 miles of coastline in California from San Diego to North of San Francisco.
  • Who: King Carlos III of Spain and Franciscan Friars of the Catholic Church funded the creation of the missions.
  • Why: Spain had already opened missions throughout Central America, Mexico and Baja California (now part of Mexico), and expanded North to keep Russian and English expeditions away from California. They were meant to convert Native Americans to Catholicism and to secure Spain's colonization of the abundant California coastline.
  • 1542: Jose Cabrillo made the first expedition to map California's coast.
  • 1602: Sebastian Vizcaino made a second expedition to map California's coast.
  • 1769: Father Junipero Serra founded the first California Mission in San Diego.
  • 1769 - 1823: Chain of 21 Missions founded from San Diego to North of San Francisco.
  • 1804: 19 missions were completed along the coast and the second row of missions were built more inland.
  • 1821: End of mission period when Mexico gained independence from Spain.
  • 1833: The Mexican Government sold and secularized the missions.
  • 1853: California became a state and the U.S. Government returned most of the missions to the Catholic Church
  • 1900s: Hollywood publicized the deterioration of the missions, gained government assistance to restore or rebuild all 21 missions, and encouraged millions of tourists every year.

Functions and Effects of California Missions:

  • Mission sites were built close to Native American villages, a water source, fertile soil for crops, and grazing land for livestock.
  • Natives chose to move to the missions because they wanted access to the modern tools, gifts, consistent food source and relative safety.
  • Natives also wanted to learn about agriculture and the domestication of animals.
  • In exchange for these resources, Natives had to live and work at the mission, convert to Catholicism and help the mission function and grow.
  • The natives would live in the missions until their education was complete.
  • Then they would build homes and farms outside of the missions.
  • After converting and educating the natives in one location, missionaries would move on to a new location, leaving the old missions as local churches.
  • Natives who converted to Catholicism were called neophytes.
  • The missions destroyed the natives’ culture, heritage, and tradition, and by the time the missions were sold, Native American land had also been sold or ruined and many Native Americans had been killed by western violence and disease.
  • Since the missions drew a large profit from agriculture and livestock, traders, settlers, and explorers exploited them.
Step 2Pixton comic-making activities
  • Make a Storyboard or Mind Map
    5 Ws

    Complete after opening discussion.

    View Activity
  • Make a Timeline
    Timeline

    Complete after class reading or discussion.

    View Activity
  • Make a Storyboard or Mind Map
    Positive & Negative Effects

    Complete after class discussion.

    View Activity
  • Extension / Modification
    Poster (Extension / Modification)

    Create a Poster to illustrate a map of the California missions.

  • Extension / Modification
    Graphic Novel (Extension / Modification)

    Research one of the California Missions and illustrate your findings in a Graphic Novel.

Step 3Concluding discussion with students

Discuss the following:

  • What is a missionary?
  • What is a mission?
  • Who originally inhabited and colonized California?
  • What were the positive and negative effects of California missions?
  • What modern-day aspects of California culture are influenced by California missions?
  • What was the most surprising or interesting thing you learned about California missions?
Print this Activity

Pixton Activity: California Missions 1 5 Ws

Featured Layouts

  • Storyboard
  • Mind Map

Intro

Review the following information about the California Missions:

  • What: A mission is a church that is built to convert locals to Christianity, in this case, Catholicism.
  • Who: King Carlos III of Spain and Franciscan Friars of the Catholic Church funded the creation of the missions.
  • Where: 21 Spanish Missions were founded across 500 miles of coastline in California from San Diego to North of San Francisco.
  • When: 1769 - 1823
  • Why: Spain had already opened missions throughout Central America, Mexico and Baja California (now part of Mexico), and expanded North to keep Russian and English expeditions away from California. They were meant to convert Native Americans to Catholicism and to secure Spain's colonization of the abundant California coastline.

Instructions

Create a Mind Map or Storyboard to illustrate the 5 Ws of California Missions:

  • Include an appropriate title for each panel.
  • Include an appropriate illustration for each panel.
  • Write an appropriate description for each panel.

See the rubric for grading guidelines.

Print this Activity

Pixton Activity: California Missions 2 Timeline

Featured Layouts

  • Timeline

Intro

Review the California Mission timeline:

  • 1542: Jose Cabrillo made the first expedition to map California's coast.
  • 1602: Sebastian Vizcaino made a second expedition to map California's coast.
  • 1769: Father Junipero Serra founded the first California Mission in San Diego.
  • 1769 - 1823: Chain of 21 Missions founded from San Diego to North of San Francisco.
  • 1804: 19 missions were completed along the coast and a second row of missions were built more inland.
  • 1821: End of mission period when Mexico gained independence from Spain.
  • 1833: The Mexican Government sold and secularized the missions.
  • 1853: California became a state and the U.S. Government returned most of the missions to the Catholic Church
  • 1900s: Hollywood publicized the deterioration of the missions, gained government assistance to restore or rebuild all 21 missions, and encouraged millions of tourists every year.

Instructions

Create a Timeline to illustrate the California Mission sequence of events:

  • Include an appropriate title for each panel.
  • Include an appropriate illustration for each panel.
  • Write an appropriate description for each panel.

See the rubric for grading guidelines.

Print this Activity

Pixton Activity: California Missions 3 Positive & Negative Effects

Featured Layouts

  • Storyboard
  • Mind Map

Intro

Functions and Effects of California Missions:

  • Mission sites were built close to Native American villages, a water source, fertile soil for crops, and grazing land for livestock.
  • Natives chose to move to the missions because they wanted access to the modern tools, gifts, consistent food source and relative safety.
  • Natives also wanted to learn about agriculture and the domestication of animals.
  • In exchange for these resources, Natives had to live and work at the mission, convert to Catholicism and help the mission function and grow.
  • The natives would live in the missions until their education was complete.
  • Then they would build homes and farms outside of the missions.
  • After converting and educating the natives in one location, missionaries would move on to a new location, leaving the old missions as local churches.
  • Natives who converted to Catholicism were called neophytes.
  • The missions destroyed the natives’ culture, heritage, and tradition, and by the time the missions were sold, Native American land had also been sold or ruined and many Native Americans had been killed by western violence and disease.
  • Since the missions drew a large profit from agriculture and livestock, traders, settlers, and explorers exploited them.

Instructions

Create a Mind Map or Storyboard to illustrate the effects of the California Missions:

  • Include an appropriate title for each panel.
  • Include an appropriate illustration for each panel.
  • Write an appropriate description for each panel.

See the rubric for grading guidelines.

Find more lesson plans:

  • MADE AT PIXTON.COM