Abolitionists Lesson Plan for Elementary School

Instructor: Kerry Gray

Kerry has been a teacher and an administrator for more than twenty years. She has a Master of Education degree.

This lesson plan will help students learn about abolitionists and their historical significance, as well as effectively use domain-specific vocabulary when answering questions about text.

Learning Objectives

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

  • Explain events and causes of the abolitionist movement
  • Understand and use domain-specific words related to abolitionists


90 minutes

Curriculum Standards


Refer to details and examples in a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from the text.


Explain events, procedures, ideas, or concepts in a historical, scientific, or technical text, including what happened and why, based on specific information in the text.


Determine the meaning of general academic and domain-specific words or phrases in a text relevant to a grade 4 topic or subject area.


  • abolitionist
  • autobiography
  • emancipate
  • oppose
  • rebellion
  • slavery
  • 13th Amendment


  • copies of the quiz
  • copies of the lesson
  • butcher paper
  • markers
  • copies of a 6-frame Bingo template
  • counters
  • pencil



  • Read Abolitionists Lesson for Kids: Definitions, Facts, and Movement as a class.
  • Pause after 'The Abolitionist Movement', discuss:
    • What is an abolitionist?
  • Pause after 'Famous Abolitionists' then discuss:
    • What did William Lloyd Garrison do to encourage emancipation?
    • How were Frederick Douglass' beliefs different from William Lloyd Garrison's?
    • What happened in Harpers Ferry Virginia?
    • How did Harriet Beecher Stowe influence the abolitionists movement?
  • Now read the remainder of the lesson.
    • Describe legislation related to the abolitionist movement.
  • Ask if there are any questions before playing the game.

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