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Ch 10: The American Civil War - Middle School US History: Homeschool Curriculum

About This Chapter

The American Civil War unit of this Middle School U.S. History Homeschool course is designed to help homeschooled students learn about the war between Northern and Southern states from 1861-1865. Parents can use the short videos to introduce topics, break up lessons, and keep students engaged.

Who's it for?

This unit of our Middle School U.S. History Homeschool course will benefit any student who is trying to learn about how the American Civil War was carried out and its repercussions on civilian Americans' daily lives. There is no faster or easier way to learn about the American Civil War. Among those who would benefit are:

  • Students who require an efficient, self-paced course of study to learn about how the North and South waged war, Civil War battles and turning points, and the significance of the Emancipation Proclamation.
  • Homeschool parents looking to spend less time preparing lessons and more time teaching.
  • Homeschool parents who need a history curriculum that appeals to multiple learning types (visual or auditory).
  • Gifted students and students with learning differences.  

How it works:

  • Students watch a short, fun video lesson that covers a specific unit topic.
  • Students and parents can refer to the video transcripts to reinforce learning.
  • Short quizzes and an American Civil War unit exam confirm understanding or identify any topics that require review.

The American Civil War Unit Objectives:

  • Compare and contrast the advantages of the North and South.
  • Describe the first Battle of Bull Run and its significance.
  • List key 1862 Civil War battles, including Antietam, New Orleans, Shiloh, and the Monitor vs. the Merrimack.
  • Discuss the creation of the Emancipation Proclamation, as well as its context and legacy.
  • Understand how the Northern and Southern economies were affected by the Civil War, and the impact it had on civilians.
  • List turning points in the Civil War, including Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, and Vicksburg.
  • Describe the circumstances of the end of the Civil War, including General Grant's march toward Richmond.
  • Explain Sherman's March to the Sea and its significance.
  • Review Lincoln's assassination and Lee's surrender at Appomattox Courthouse to close the Civil War.

9 Lessons in Chapter 10: The American Civil War - Middle School US History: Homeschool Curriculum
Civil War Begins: Northern and Southern Advantages Compared

1. Civil War Begins: Northern and Southern Advantages Compared

At the outbreak of the American Civil War, both the North and South believed the conflict would be over quickly. But advantages for both the Confederacy and the Union meant a prolonged war between the states. In this lesson, discover some of the advantages that the North and South had.

The First Battle of Bull Run: Civil War Blood is Shed

2. The First Battle of Bull Run: Civil War Blood is Shed

Three months after the bombardment of Fort Sumter, Northern troops attacked Southern forces near the Confederate capital of Richmond, Virginia. The first Battle of Bull Run (or Manassas) was the first major engagement of the Civil War and a terrifying defeat for the Union spectators who came to watch.

Key Civil War Battles in 1862: Monitor and Merrimac, Antietam, New Orleans & Shiloh

3. Key Civil War Battles in 1862: Monitor and Merrimac, Antietam, New Orleans & Shiloh

In 1862, the Union put its Anaconda Plan into action, resulting in several critical events: the Peninsular Campaign, the Battle of Hampton Roads between the ironclads Monitor and Virginia (Merrimack), the Battle of Shiloh, the capture of New Orleans, and the Battle of Antietam.

The Emancipation Proclamation: Creation, Context and Legacy

4. The Emancipation Proclamation: Creation, Context and Legacy

On January 1, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation went into effect. More than three million slaves in the South were freed, but the move was not without its critics, both then and now.

How the Civil War Affected the Economy and Everyday Life in the North and South

5. How the Civil War Affected the Economy and Everyday Life in the North and South

With the strongest and most productive demographic of society away fighting in the Civil War, the task of running homes, communities, and the nation fell to those who stayed behind. The war on the home front changed their lives forever.

Civil War Turning Points: Chancellorsville, Gettysburg and Vicksburg

6. Civil War Turning Points: Chancellorsville, Gettysburg and Vicksburg

In 1863, three events proved to be turning points for the American Civil War: the Battle of Chancellorsville, the Battle of Gettysburg and the Siege of Vicksburg. Learn about these Civil War turning points in this lesson.

End of the Civil War: General Grant Begins the March Toward Richmond

7. End of the Civil War: General Grant Begins the March Toward Richmond

President Lincoln took a gamble and named Ulysses S. Grant as General-in-Chief of the Union army. They devised a plan to finally take Richmond and win the war in 1864. In this lesson, learn about General Grant's controversial tactics.

Sherman's March to the Sea

8. Sherman's March to the Sea

In 1864, General William T. Sherman began his Atlanta campaign. His success assured Lincoln's re-election in 1864. Sherman then began his destructive March to the Sea in order to capture Savannah.

Lincoln's Assassination and Lee's Surrender at Appomattox Courthouse

9. Lincoln's Assassination and Lee's Surrender at Appomattox Courthouse

Two of the most eventful weeks in American history took place between April 1 and April 15, 1865, during which Richmond (the capital of the Confederacy) fell, General Lee surrendered at Appomattox Courthouse and President Abraham Lincoln was assassinated.

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Other Chapters

Other chapters within the Middle School US History: Homeschool Curriculum course

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