Student Developed Lesson

How Do I Know That Actually Happened?
Juan Ponce de Leon 
and the Fountain of Youth
Students will occasionally ask me, "How do I know that actually happened?  You weren't there, I wasn't there."  The purpose of this Student Developed Lesson is to help my students answer this question.  Last year, students asked this question while we were discussing the exploration of Florida.  I felt this was a good opportunity for an SDL.  The question is developed by the students.  The homework is for me, "How can I come up with an engaging lesson to deliver the content that my students want to know?"
1493  Ponce de Leon is part of Columbus's second voyage to the new world.  
1504 Ponce de Leon is named Governor of Eastern Hispanolia 
1508  Ponce de Leon explored for gold in nearby Puerto Rico
1509  Ponce de Leon is named Governor of Puerto Rico

1509  Governorship is lost because of political fighting to Diego Columbus 

1512  Granted permission by King Ferdinand to explore for Bimimi (The Bahamas

1513  April 2, Ponce de Leon with crew of 200 and 3 ships (paid for himself) land.  The proclaim the land for Spain and name it "Pascua de Florida" (feast of flowers)

1514  Ponce de Leon returns to Spain to report his findings.  Named Governor of Bimini and Florida

1515 - Ponce de Leoon is ordered to return to Puerto Rico with an army to put down an Indian uprising

1521  Ponce de Leon left Puerto Rico to return to Florida to explore the western side of the peninsula.  During this voyage he was attacked by Calusa Indians and struck with a poison arrow in the thigh.  He will return to Cuba where he will die of his injuries.

1535   Gonzalo Fernandez de Oviedo y Valdes named chief Spanish historian.  Writes the extensive Historia general y natural de las Indias.  In this book, he wrote that only someone as gullible as Ponce de Leon would foolishly search for a Fountain of Youth.  This book will not be published until the 19th century.

1575  A sailor lost for decades, Hernando Descalante Fontaneda writes his memoirs about his life in the West Indies.  In it, he mentioned that it would be incredible to believe that Ponce de Leon hunted for the River Jordon, which supposedly had  rejuvenating waters.  
Ponce de Leon Timeline

Using the links below, complete the BKWLQ and questionnaire sheet.  Answer the question, "How do I know this really happened?"