Thursday, November 18, 2010

Siberia: Russia's Frontier

Hello class,

Today we will take a look at Siberia, the region which dominates the Asian portion of Russia. Rich in natural beauty, resources, and history, Siberia casts a great and sometimes foreboding shadow over Russia's national consciousness. As Russia's frontier, Siberia has many historical parallels with the western United States. We will learn more about this important region by examining a site created by the U.S. Library of Congress (LOC).

At the Meeting of Frontiers Web site, you can learn more about how Siberia's physical geography shaped the region's development. Information on this site is written in both Russian and English -- Russian students might be doing exactly the same thing you are doing right now!

Start at the Meeting of Frontiers Web site.

Take notes as you read through the site. All of the information on the sites you look at today is eligible for tomorrow's quiz. You may not begin answering the questions below until I announce that it is time to start answering them.

  • Click on America, Russia, and the Meeting of Frontiers.
  • Click on Development. Read this page, and then click on and read Agriculture in Siberia.
  • Return to the main screen and click on Exploration. Read this page, and then click on The Russian Discovery of Siberia and Mapping of Siberia. Read this page and look at the maps.
  • Return to the main screen and click on National Identity. Read this page, and then click on and read Tourism.
When I have announced that you may begin, use the information you gathered to answer the following questions on loose leaf paper. You must answer in complete sentences. This is a 20 point assignment, due at the end of the period.
  1. What natural resource first drew Russians to Siberia? What role did the same natural resource have in the development of the western United States? (4 points)
  2. How did Russian farmers adapt their agricultural methods to the Siberian climate? What impact did Russian farmers have on Siberian agriculture? (4 points)
  3. Why did governments throughout western Europe commission new maps of Siberia in the mid-1500s? (4 points)
  4. Following World War II, why did Siberia become a popular tourist destination? (4 points)
  5. In the 1800s major gold deposits were discovered in the western United States and Siberia. On a separate sheet of paper, create a Venn diagram comparing and contrasting the gold rushes on the two frontiers. (4 points)

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