Creating a California mission model has been a standard fourth grade project for YEARS! In our district, we have chosen to complete other mission-related projects in class and have treated model building as extra credit.
After receiving the mission guidelines (both English and Spanish are available below), students are given approximately three weeks to create their model. They are allowed to use any materials available, as long as a mission kit is not purchased from the craft store. The only major criteria is size! 30 missions sitting in one classroom take up a lot of space! For this reason, missions are brought in during one week only, then sent home!
I have had students bring in missions made from cardboard, wood, sugar cubes, plaster, and even CAKE! The choice is theirs as long as the majority of the work is completed by the students themselves. Points are awarded on a credit/no credit basis, as some students have the privilege of much parent participation and some do not. Please edit the guidelines below and modify the project to your classroom as needed! Enjoy!