Missouri Compromise Lesson Plan for Middle School

Instructor: Kristen Goode

Kristen has been an educator for 25+ years - as a classroom teacher, a school administrator, and a university instructor. She holds a doctorate in Education Leadership.

The Missouri Compromise is an important part of United States history. In this lesson plan, students will learn about the Missouri Compromise, its purpose, and its result. Students will also create a timeline of related events.

Learning Objectives

By the conclusion of this lesson, students will:

  • Describe events leading up to the Missouri Compromise
  • Explain the purpose and result of the Missouri Compromise
  • Create a timeline of events related to the Missouri Compromise


50 - 60 minutes

Curriculum Standards


Identify key steps in a text's description of a process related to history/social studies (e.g., how a bill becomes law, how interest rates are raised or lowered).


Integrate visual information (e.g., in charts, graphs, photographs, videos, or maps) with other information in print and digital texts.


Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including vocabulary specific to domains related to history/social studies.



  • Begin by asking students if they know anything about the terms Lousiana Purchase, Missouri Compromise, or slavery. Hold a brief discussion allowing students to share what they know.
  • Give each student a printed copy of the lesson, Missouri Compromise Lesson for Kids and explain that you will be reading about the Missouri Compromise that took place in the United States in the early 1800s.
  • As a class, read through the lesson together. Stop occasionally to discuss:
    • Why was the Missouri Compromise formed?
    • Explain the difference between free states and slave states.
    • What was the Louisiana Purchase? What affect did it have on the United States?
    • Who proposed the Missouri Compromise?
    • What affect did the Missouri Compromise have on the future of the United States?
  • After reading through the lesson, ask students to share what they have learned as well as ask any additional questions they may have.
  • Check for understanding by having students take the lesson quiz.


To reinforce learning, use the following activity.

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