Spanish DBQ (Document Based Question) Writing Curriculum

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Grant Applicant
Katie Sluiter
Grant Category
Grant Date

This grant is for one set of The DBQ Project Mini-Q’s in US History Volume 1: Units 1-12 and Units 13-24 Spanish Version. DBQ units provide a scaffolded and accessible opportunity for all students to build analytical thinking and writing through historical lenses in Spanish. Students use 3-7 documents to analyze and interpret into an informational or argumentative writing assignment. 

DBQ Project lessons address the following standards:

SL.5-8.1 Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grade 5 topics and texts, building on others' ideas and expressing their own clearly.

RI.5.10 By the end of the year, read and comprehend informational texts, including history/social studies, science, and technical texts, at the high end of the grease 4-5 text complexity band independently and proficiently.

W.5.2. Write informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas and information clearly.

W.5.7 Conduct short research projects that use several sources to build knowledge through investigation of different aspects of a topic.

Benefits of Program

DBQ Writing Projects allow students to interact with history and historical documents in a meaningful way. Each lesson uses engaging questions to draw students into the research and provides educators with differentiation strategies to allow all students access to curriculum and build quality writing tasks. Students are asked to use Primary and Secondary sources, just as historians do in their fields, to understand a topic in history with greater depth. 


Success of Program

Research supports that critical thinking and guiding students through conversations build language skills, especially in second language students (Araujo, 2013). DBQ is structured so the teacher has a clear roadmap for guiding students into exploring and building knowledge on grade specific content. The Fifth graders at KBE and Truckee Elementary are already using this program in English. Students, including English Language Learners and students with disabilities, were able to build background knowledge, learn new vocabulary, and successfully use this vocabulary in writing and academic classroom conversations. By purchasing levels Unit One in entirety in Spanish, Fourth and Fifth grade students will have access to tiered vocabulary instruction in Spanish, using a format they are already familiar with. This will continue to build on ELA standards in writing, while providing opportunities for greater rigor and language development in Spanish.


Throughout the school year, DBQ writing lessons will be used to build and content knowledge as well as expand vocabulary through content targeted research and writing prompts in Spanish. Lessons align with Fourth and Fifth grade Social Studies and Spanish Language Standards, which will allow for building analytical and writing skills.

Can you share this grant with your grade level or subject team?

This curriculum can be shared between grades 4-5 within the Spanish Immersion program at KBE as well as potentially adapted by 6-8th at North Tahoe School.

This grant is a one time purchase. The materials are sustainable and reusable for future students.
Amount Funded
Individual Budget Items(s)
$400 - ORIGINAL Mini-Qs in US History Vol 1 (Units 1-12)- Spanish Version (ISBN-978-1-944897-83-3)
$400 - NEW Mini-Qs in US History Vol 1 (Units 13-24)- Spanish Version (ISBN-978-1-944897-94-9)
Other funding sources



I am not sure if there will be a sales tax applied at time of purchasing, but this was added in precaution.