Early American Trade with China

Trade Routes & Trading Strategies

Economics of the China Trade

Contrasting Views of Trade

Life on a Merchant Ship


Lesson Overview

TEACHING LEVEL: 7-12 grade
TEACHING TIME: Two 50-minute class periods


  • Students will define “mercantilism” and explain its basic tenets.
  • Students will explain why the United States became involved in the China trade.
  • Students will locate relevant ports, oceans, and regions on the world map.
  • Students will list and explain factors which determined how different trading routes and strategies were devised over time.


Adapting the Lesson for Middle School

Most of the activities in this lesson are appropriate for middle school students. If the teacher anticipates that some students may find the descriptions of the common trade routes difficult to read, students can work together in groups to figure out one of the routes and then form new groups to teach each other about the routes using the jigsaw model of cooperative learning.

Previous Next



Home | Unit Overview | Trade Routes | Economics | Contrasting Views | Life on a Ship | Resources | Credits