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Unit 2: How Trade and Travel Changed the World

Lesson I: Old and New World Exchanges

Activity 2: Global Impacts of the Transatlantic Exchanges

The Columbian Exchange and Transatlantic slave trade had profound effects on people around the world. Use the following activity to better understand the impacts of the exchanges on the people of Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Americas. Select "Continue" when you are ready to begin.

Directions: Download the Student Resource: Atlantic Exchange Graphic Organizer and complete it as you view the simulation.

Download Icon Student Resource: Atlantic Exchange Graphic Organizer (doc)


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Classroom Activity - Costs and Benefits of New and Old World Exchanges

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Directions: Prepare a response to the discussion questions below. Follow your teacher's directions to participate in your class discussion.

In the opening activity, you predicted the costs and benefits of exchanges between the old and new world. Now that you have learned more about this:

  • Who benefited from these exchanges and how did they benefit?
  • Who paid the costs of these exchanges and what were those costs?


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The plantation system was used to provide many of the goods that flowed from the New World to the Old World along the Columbian Exchange. In the next section you will learn about this system and the role of slave labor in the plantations of the Americas.