SOUTHWESTERN STUDIES MINI-PROJECT INSTRUCTIONS
Students taking the structured approach may do up to three mini-
projects as part of the required 16 exercises. There is one mini-project for
each of the following topics:
a. The Southwest to 1800
b. The Southwest in the 19th Century
c. The Southwest in the 20th Century
Students taking the free-form approach are not limited and may complete
as many as needed to reach the maximum 2000 points.
The acceptable formats are:
Cemetery and Historic Site Registry
Hollywood Does the Southwest
Internet Site Editing & Revision (El Centro's)
Internet Page Building
Readings and Questions
Be careful to select a format that fits the topic. For example,
it will be
unlikely that you will be able to complete an oral history for two of the
READ THE SPECIFIC INSTRUCTIONS FOR EACH PROJECT CAREFULLY.
ALL MINI-PROJECTS HAVE A REQUIRED CHECKLIST. SEE PAGE 10.
SPECFIC INSTRUCTIONS FOR MINI-PROJECTS
REQUIRES INSTRUCTOR APPROVAL!
(20 point deduction if not approved)
GRADING: Following instructions, quality of artwork,
completion of questions below and essay,
1. Select a theme for your art project that relates to assigned topics.
2. Select any medium for your project (painting/drawing, models,
needlework, film, metalworking, pottery, etc.)
3. Discuss your mini-project proposal with the instructor for approval.
Have the instructor approve this proposal here:
date:________ project approved_____________________
4. Complete the following questionnaire:
A. Title of work:
B. Materials used:
C. Hours of work to complete:
D. Date work completed:
E. Resources (books, pictures, etc.):
F. Brief essay (approximately 150 words): Describe
experience in creating this project. Why did you
select this topic? What were your experiences while
creating the project? Did you run into any problems?
How did creating this project make you feel? What
did you learn? Are you happy with your creation?
5. Submit your project with this page completed and the checklist.
CEMETERY AND HISTORIC SITE REGISTRY
Grading: 25 points per cemetery/site including at
least one photo or illustration per site, essay,
1. Locate cemeteries and historic sites in the Southwest.
2. Visit the site and take a photo or obtain a brochure about the site.
3. In an essay, describe what can be found at the location(s) and how each relates to Southwestern
4. Mount the illustrations with the essay.
5. Submit with checklist.
GRADING: Length of paper, hours of film
viewed, answering questions from
1. Select up two hours of documentaries that relate to the assigned
topics. Make sure these films are NOT docudramas.
2. You may find selections on television, in libraries or at
3. Take notes while watching the documentaries. Be sure to note
the names of the films, the producers of the films and how you obtained
4. Write an essay summarizing and critiquing the documentaries.
Approximately 300 words.
5. Neatness, grammar and spelling do count (up to 10 point deduction).
6. Submit your paper with your original notes (ten point deduction in
not submitted) taken while watching the documentaries and the checklist.
GRADING: 30 POINTS PER PAGE REPORT,
10 POINTS PER ILLUSTRATION,
1. Locate one or more historical locations that relate to the
2. Visit the site(s).
3. Take notes, photographs, collect pamphlets while you visit the
4. Write an essay about the field trip(s) and mount illustrations in an
5. Put it in a notebook.
6. You may add additional research if you wish, but be sure to document
any outside resources.
7. Neatness, grammar and spelling are important. (up to ten point
8. Point system: 30 points per page of essay; 10 points per
illustration/photo. At least one-half (50 pts.) must be essay.
9. Submit the project with the checklist.
HOLLYWOOD DOES THE SOUTHWEST
Grading: Essay, Checklist
1. Select a movie that relates to Southwestern Studies. Here are some titles, but this is
not meant to be a comprehensive list:
"Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid"
"Gunfight at the OK Corral"
"Bonnie and Clyde"
"The Buddy Holly Story"
"Cabeza de Vaca"
2. Take notes while viewing the film noting historical accuracies
3. Write a 300 word essay about the film including the following information:
a. Name of the movie, producer, director, major performers, date of release
b. What was the underlying theme of the movie?
c. Did the filmmaker have a particular political, social, cultural, economic, or
d. What was the message of the film?
e. How does this movie contribute to the public's image of this particular theme?
f. Was this film historically accurate?
g. Was the visual presentation of this film effective?
h. What was your overall opinion regarding the quality of the acting, directing,
and the message of the film?
i. How would you rate this film from one to four stars? Explain.
4. Turn in the essay, your notes, and the checklist.
GRADING: Online time, following instructions,
quality of essay, quality of critique, checklist
This project requires approximately 2 hours of online time.
Select a topic that relates to assignment. Using
search engines like Yahoo!, HotBot, Infoseek, etc., search
the internet for relevant sites. Keep a log of your online
work including time logged on/off. When you locate sites that
meet your requirements, take notes about the page including the
URL (address), who produced the page (if known), what information
may be found on the page, and your critique of the usefulness of
After you have spent two hours online, hopefully, you should
have enough information to write an essay of approximately
300 words explaining what you found, what you learned and general
impressions of the experience. (Spelling, grammar and neatness
are important. Up to ten point deduction)
Submit the essay with a checklist.
INTERNET SITE EDITING & REVISION (EL CENTRO'S)
GRADING: 10 points per site reviewed, 5 points for
report of broken link, checklist
1. Select one of the sites that the instructor has created for students relevant to Southwestern
Studies. These include the following pages:
Southwestern Studies Main Page (Mexico & Mexican-Americans including Tejanos)
Texas History Page
Texas Music Page
Archaeology & Anthropology with Rock Art Page
Cochise, Hohokam, and Mogollon Page
Capstone Program Page: Caddo, Hopi, Navajo, and Zuni
Other pages that are more general that you may edit include::
American Indians Main Page
Early Americans including Maya Page
Specific Historic American Indian Nations Page
Old West Page
2. Find a link.. Examine it. Report broken links. If the site is good, write a brief (one or two
sentences) describing what can be found there and the quality of the site.
3. In your essay, give the El Centro Page URL or title, the URL and title of the site being
reviewed including broken links. Submit with the checklist.
INTERNET PAGE BUILDING
GRADING: following instructions, checklist
Design and create history home page with at least ten links and
one piece of clipart relevant to Southwestern Studies assigned
Submit your mini-project by turning in the checklist with the
of your page written clearly on the paper. A link to your page
will be included on the Student's Home Page so ideally, you should
try to leave it online for the following semester period.
GRADING: Length, balance of music and
commentary, creativity, documentation
of resources/bibliography including
music, quality of tape, checklist
1. Select a theme for your music project that is related to
2. The theme may be a certain artist, a specific type of music, a
particular time frame of music or a common topic in the music.
3. Locate examples of this music.
4. Locate other resources such a biographies and histories.
5. On a standard size tape, tape excerpts of the music and your
comments about the music. Your comments should include information
about the artist, your interpretation of the music, the significance of
the music in historical terms, and your critique of the music.
6. The music and comments should be balanced in time. A tape of just
music is not acceptable for a passing grade.
7. Write a bibliography of the resource you used including
records/tapes/CDs, etc., books and articles. Be sure to include the
dates of releases.
8. Length requirements: 25 points per 5 minutes of tape (20 minutes
for maximum credit)
9. Turn in the tape and bibliography with the checklist.
GRADING: Tape,transcript, length, quality of questions, checklist
1. Locate one or more persons who will agree to complete a taped
interview about their lives that relates to Southwestern Studies. This
would include anyone who has lived most of her life in the Southwest.
It does not have to be a famous or old person.
2. Decide whether to interview about a particular period in history or
the entire life of the interviewee.
3. Develop questions you want to ask being careful to relate the
questions to life in the Southwest.
4. Interview the person(s) on tape.
5. It will be helpful if you know your history relating the time
periods you cover, so you may wish to read your textbook if we have not
covered that material in class.
6. An interview of one-half enough material.
7. After the interview has been completed, transcribe the tape.
The transcription should be exact. Do not correct grammar. Transcribe
both your questions and the interviewees answers. If you cannot
understand what the interviewee said, indicate that as [unintelligible].
8. At the end of the transcript add a paragraph or two with your own
comments about the interview such as what you learned.
9. The finished paper should be at least 400 words.
10. Neatness counts. (up to ten point deduction)
11. Submit the transcript and the tape with the checklist.
READINGS AND QUESTIONS
READINGS MUST BE APPROVED BY THE INSTRUCTOR
(20 point deduction if not approved)
GRADING: discussion with the instructor, checklist
(Note: Generally, this project will cover
an article or part of a book. In some cases, a book may
be used for all three mini-projects. See
1. Select and locate an article or book from El Centro's library that
relates to the assigned topic.
2. Schedule an appointment with the instructor providing a copy of the
article/book that you have read.
3. Discuss the reading with the instructor and turn-in the checklist.
GRADING: QUANTITY, QUALITY, ESSAY, CREATIVITY,
1. RUBBINGS (25 points each)
(minimum of one rubbing in all
2. PHOTOS (10 points each)
Note: All rubbings/photos mini-projects have
a required essay.
1. Locate HISTORICAL MARKERS and/or CERTAIN GRAVESTONES** for people
and events relevant to the Southwest. **Gravestones must in some way
reveal a connection to the Southwest and the evidence must appear on the
rubbing or be explained in the essay. Gravestones that show no
connection to the Southwest are not acceptable. Qualifying evidence
includes an inscription that refers to Texas, Mexico, or other
southwestern area; military service; emblems; Spanish; or a marker at
the cemetery explaining the Southwestern connection. Any historical
marker in the Southwest qualifies.
2. Be sure to document the name of the cemetery and its exact location
(either address or directions to the location).
3. Rubbings are 25 points each and photos are 10 points each. All
mini-projects must include at least 1 rubbing.
4. You will need to write a 150 word diary-type essay about your
adventure, so be sure to take notes about your companions, experiences
5. Creativity in selections is very important. Look for interesting
examples. (up to 10 point deduction)
6. To get full credit the rubbings/photos must show the entire
gravestone or marker regardless of how big it is.
7. The gravestones must be readable for grading. Fuzzy photos or
unreadable rubbings will receive major deductions.
8. Put the rubbings together by folding, rolling or binding some way.
The photos should be mounted neatly.
9. Include a essay about your experience (about 150 words). (up to 20
10. Submit the rubbings, photos and essay with the checklist.
PART II: HOW TO DO GRAVESTONE RUBBINGS:
1. Obtain large paper and crayons. Any type of paper seems to work.
Newsprint is the best but artist pads, flip charts, the back side of
gift wrapping, and tissue paper also work. On hot days, crayons may
melt. Charcoal is a suitable, if messy, substitute. Use dark colors of
crayons and charcoal.
2. Avoid the advice of salespersons on materials. They will try to
sell the most expensive which does not mean it's the best.
3. Locate the gravestones/markers you wish to rub.
4. Place the paper over the gravestone. Having a companion
hold it is
the easiest way. Tape does not stick well to marble.
5. With the crayon on its side, go over the gravestone. An image will
appear. All gravestones do not rub well. Those with smooth surfaces
tend to do the best. But try anything that interests you.
6. Neatness of the rubbing is VERY important. The rubbing should have
a smooth appearance not scribbles. A perfect rubbing should not expose
any distinctive movement of the crayon. Do not just rub the name and
dates. Rub the entire gravestone regardless of size to receive full
PART III: OTHER HELPFUL HINTS
1. Remember, it is not the dead we need to fear. It is the living. I
recommend all students take companions.
2. Watch out for fire ants, chiggers, mosquitoes and other critters.
3. It is illegal in Texas to be in a cemetery after the sun sets. This
is true even if this information is not posted at the cemetery.
4. Take your syllabus and guidelines with you to the cemetery. This
will be helpful if you have questions about how to do the project and if
anyone questions you about what you are doing.
REQUIRED MINI-PROJECT/PROJECT CHECKLIST:
Directions: Answer each question that applies to your particular format with a "yes" or
"no" except for the last one. If any statement doesn't apply to your format, write "N/A."
-10 for no checklist.
_____ 1. I received approval from the instructor for this project if required (art, some
_____ 2. My project relates to the assigned topic.
_____ 3. I have checked grammar and spelling in this project.
_____ 4. My project has been presented in an attractive manner
appropriate for a college
_____ 5. I am pleased with the overall quality of my work on this project and feel it
reflects college level work.
_____ 6. I submitted the project on or before the day it was due.
_____ 8. The length and other requirements represent an attempt
_____ 9. I did the work for this project, and I did it during this semester.
_____10. I had to hurry to finish this project.
_____11. I turned in all required notes, bibliographies, tapes and essays.
_____12. I carefully read all instructions that related to my
chosen project format and
made every effort to comply with them.
_____13. I documented all outside resources that I used for this project.
_____14. My illustrations, rubbings and photographs are clear and readable.
_____15. If I was giving a grade for this mini-project or project,
it would be an:
A, B, C, D, or F.