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The Reformation

The Reformation


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Grade Level Grades 3-8
Standards Alignment
Common Core State Standards

About This Lesson

The Reformation tells the story of the religious upheaval in the 1500s that led to the founding of Protestantism and had far-reaching social and political consequences. Students learn how Gutenberg’s printing press made the Bible widely available and encouraged the spread of literacy. Students explore the factors that led Martin Luther and John Calvin, the most influential leaders of the Reformation, to protest against the authority of the Catholic Church. Students also learn about the Church’s efforts to reform its practices, known as the Counter-Reformation. In addition, students investigate how the findings of Copernicus and Galileo led to conflicts between science and the Church.

This unit includes a Student Reader, Timeline Image Cards, and Teacher Guide, providing Guided Reading Supports and the following Additional Activities: a role play of Galileo’s trail; domain vocabulary exercises; true/false questions about Martin Luther; and a Unit Assessment.


Determine two or more main ideas of a text and explain how they are supported by key details; summarize the text.
Explain the relationships or interactions between two or more individuals, events, ideas, or concepts in a historical, scientific, or technical text based on specific information in the text.
Determine the meaning of general academic and domain-specific words and phrases in a text relevant to a grade 5 topic or subject area.
Quote accurately from a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from the text.


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