Westward Expansion 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.

Go west, young man! We've all heard it, but what does it mean? A video lesson explains and an activity allows students to document the experience of western pioneers. Extra activities and related lessons are included as well.

Learning Objectives:

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

  • explain the western expansion
  • outline key events in the western expansion
  • depict the life of a pioneer during the western expansion

Length

1 to 2 hours

Materials

  • List of pioneers from which students can choose names to research (depending on the size of the class, two or more students may research the same person)

Curriculum Standards

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RH.6-8.4

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

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RH.6-8.7

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

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RH.6-8.9

Analyze the relationship between a primary and secondary source on the same topic.

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