Abolitionist Movement Lesson Plan

Instructor: Dana Dance-Schissel

Dana teaches social sciences at the college level and English and psychology at the high school level. She has master's degrees in applied, clinical and community psychology.

Who were the abolitionists and what mark did their work leave on America's history? This lesson plan uses a video lesson to introduce key figures in the Abolitionist Movement and an activity to engage students with the legacies of these individuals.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this lesson, students will be able to:

  • define 'abolitionist'
  • summarize the goals of the Abolitionist Movement
  • outline the strategies and impact of key figures in the Abolitionist Movement


  • 1 to 1.5 hours

Curriculum Standards


Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of primary and secondary sources, attending to such features as the date and origin of the information.


Determine the central ideas or information of a primary or secondary source; provide an accurate summary of how key events or ideas develop over the course of the text.


Analyze in detail a series of events described in a text; determine whether earlier events caused later ones or simply preceded them.


Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including vocabulary describing political, social, or economic aspects of history/social science.


  • A worksheet created using the quiz from the associated video lesson
  • Copies of photographs of David Walker, William Lloyd Garrison, Frederick Douglass, Henry Highland Garnet, Harriet Beecher Stowe, and Harriet Tubman
  • Cardboard
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • Markers

Key Vocabulary

  • Abolitionist

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