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The English Colonies, 1605-1760 • Regional Colonial Development
Classroom Activities

Objective: Create an advertisement that summarizes the features of an early U.S. colonial region.

Key Questions:

  • What were early European explorers hoping to accomplish when exploring new sea routes and territories?
  • Evaluate the success of early English and French exploration efforts. What were they hoping to find and how successful were they in obtaining new land or resources?

Notes on Implementation:

  • Extend the activity by having students present their sales pitch to the class or record a video advertisement.
  • Offer additional support by providing a graphic organizer for students to plan their work.

Student Activity: Students can access the below activity in the Exploration Topic Center within the American History database.

Student Activity:

America's original 13 colonies developed along the Atlantic seaboard. For most, the Appalachian Mountains determined their western boundary. In the beginning, the majority of the settlers were English. However, by the late 1600s there were also Dutch, Swedes, and Germans in the middle colonies; French in the southern colonies; and a scattering of Spaniards, Italians, and Portuguese throughout the colonies. There were also Africans in the south who had been forced to immigrate to America by slave traders.

In this activity you will review features of the different colonial regions to create a newspaper advertisement enticing white Europeans to move to a colonial region. To complete this activity, you will need to review the map and read the reference article Regional and Colonial Development. For additional information use the Explore section videos on Regional Development.



  • Review and read the resources.
  • Select a colonial region for your advertisement.
  • Sketch, draw, or use technology to create your advertisement.
  • Include a slogan, image, and 3 bullets points that identify the opportunities and advantages a white European immigrant would encounter in this colonial region.
  • Include an explanation of why you chose this colonial region. What made this region more appealing than the others?


Key Understandings:

  • Culture is the product of shared economic, religious, and political values
  • Regional characteristics can influence people's perspectives

Possible Answers for Activity:

New England

Middle Colonies

Southern Colonies

  • New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut

  • Not suited for large-scale farming, thin and rocky soil, unlevel land, and long winters

  • Consists of small villages and towns around harbors.

  • Industries include shipbuilding, lumbering, fishing, and ironworks

  • Established schools and churches

  • Strong religious beliefs

  • New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware

  • Land suited for farming, known as "bread colonies," produce large amount of grains particularly corn and wheat.

  • Cottage industries such as weaving, shoemaking, and cabinetmaking.

  • Religiously, Quakers dominated Philadelphia

  • Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia

  • Rural, large-scale farming, fertile soil, broad lowlands, warm climate

  • Society dominated by wealthy plantation class

  • Grew cash crops, rice, tobacco, and indigo

  • Reliant on slave labor


MLA Citation

"Regional Colonial Development." History Hub, ABC-CLIO, 2019, historyhub.abc-clio.com. Accessed 15 Sept. 2019.

View all citation styles.

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