Social Studies Project: California Missions – Multiple Intelligences

**note: students must know something about multiple intelligences, including their own.


4 (California History- but could be modified for other topics)


Variable – allow at least one week

PROVIDE FOR INCLUSION – A You Question, Energizer, or Linking Strategy

Tell students they are about to work on an individual project. Have them share their strongest and weakest intelligence with a partner, group, or in class.


Content Standard: People, places, and environments

Collaborative: Think constructively, celebrate achievement

Personal:  Develop and showcase Multiple Intelligences


Circular Curriculum (from the Artistry for Learning)

After you teach the concept, invite students, working in tribes or individually, to choose one to three of the following demonstrations of learning.

Here is an example of demonstrations of understanding, based on the multiple intelligences (also the student handout):

Verbal / Linguistic

Write three sentences about 10 California missions, including:

a) Location

b) Date established

c) Interesting (unique) fact

Musical / Rhythmic

Write a poem that includes 10 California missions, and rhymes!

Mathematical / Logical

Draw a map of California that includes:

a) All 21 missions

b) Each mission’s name

c) A simple outline of what the mission looks like

d) Distance in time or miles from each, in numerical order


Construct a diorama of a mission, with emphasis on the physical / geographical surroundings and identify how these environmental elements contributed to the success of the mission

Body / Kinesthetic

Build a mission replica of an actual mission and label materials used, both original, and those used to replicate


Write a diary of a missionary and a diary of an Indian for a particular mission. The diaries should begin with the establishment of the mission and have three entries about development of the mission, ending with an entry about what results from the mission being there….

Visual / Spatial

Create a Power Point, Publisher, or Inspiration creation that demonstrates your understanding of California missions

Interpersonal (required)

Be prepared to demonstrate your mission project with the class, on some level…


Content: While projects are being shared/presented, have students write comments on grid (see student handouts).

Collaborative: How would you rate your ideas – original, or influenced? Explain.
If someone uses your idea, but changes it to his/her own interpretation, it is copying?

Personal: What did you like about this project and all it’s choices? What didn’t you like?


After each presentation, applause or invite statements.


Have each student grade himself/herself on several levels. For example: accuracy of information, presentation, effort involved, compared to others, etc.


  • Group Development Process
  • Cognitive Theory
  • Multiple Intelligences
  • Cooperative Learning
  • Constructivism
  • Reflective Practice
  • Authentic Assessment

Download the Handout