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Ch 9: Manifest Destiny (1806-1855) Lesson Plans

About This Chapter

The Manifest Destiny (1806-1855) chapter of this course is designed to help you plan and teach the history of America's westward expansion in your classroom. The video lessons, quizzes, and transcripts can easily be adapted to provide your lesson plans with engaging and dynamic educational content. Make planning your course easier by using our syllabus as a guide.

Weekly Syllabus

Below is a sample breakdown of the Manifest Destiny chapter into a 5-day school week. Based on the pace of your course, you may need to adapt the lesson plan to fit your needs.

Day Topics Key Terms and Concepts Covered
Monday Americans' migration westward to the Pacific The Oregon Trail
Tuesday The annexation of Texas Texas' entry into the U.S., Manifest Destiny, the politics of admitting Texas
Wednesday Accomplishments of the presidencies of John Tyler and James K. Polk American expansion in the lower 48 states, sectionalism
Thursday The Mexican-American War Causes and major conflicts of the Mexican-American War, the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, the Wilmot Proviso, the election of 1848, the California gold rush
Friday Policies and accomplishments of the presidencies of Millard Fillmore and Franklin Pierce The Compromise of 1850, the American economy and politics

9 Lessons in Chapter 9: Manifest Destiny (1806-1855) Lesson Plans
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
The Oregon Trail: Westward Migration to the Pacific Ocean

1. The Oregon Trail: Westward Migration to the Pacific Ocean

Throughout the first half of the 19th century, the United States expanded its borders all the way to the Pacific Ocean, fulfilling its manifest destiny. Find out about the reasons people wanted this land, the path that took them there and the politicians who supported it all.

Manifest Destiny: Definition, Summary and Timeline

2. Manifest Destiny: Definition, Summary and Timeline

Manifest Destiny was a term coined by John O'Sullivan in 1845. It encompassed the idea that the United States was destined to occupy all the land between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.

Manifest Destiny's Texas Annexation Problem

3. Manifest Destiny's Texas Annexation Problem

Find out why it took five presidents (Jackson, Van Buren, Harrison, Tyler and Polk) to get Texas annexed into the U.S. and added as a state during the era of Manifest Destiny.

President John Tyler: American Expansion and Sectional Concerns

4. President John Tyler: American Expansion and Sectional Concerns

In the presidential election of 1840, 'Tippecanoe and Tyler, Too!' prevailed. But with President Harrison's death just a month later, Vice President John Tyler took the oath of office. Was 'His Accidency' really as bad a president as some critics suggest?

President James K. Polk's Accomplishments in the Lower 48 States

5. President James K. Polk's Accomplishments in the Lower 48 States

President James Polk may be obscure, but he wasn't insignificant. Learn about his controversial territorial acquisitions that define most of what Americans today call the 'Lower 48' states.

The Mexican-American War, Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo & the Wilmot Proviso

6. The Mexican-American War, Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo & the Wilmot Proviso

The controversial Mexican-American War lasted from 1846-1848. In this lesson, discover how the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo expanded the southern part of the United States all the way to the Pacific Ocean.

Election of 1848 and the California Gold Rush

7. Election of 1848 and the California Gold Rush

General Zachary Taylor was elected president in 1848, hoping to see the peaceful addition of land from the Mexican cession. 'Old Rough and Ready' wasn't prepared for the California gold rush.

President Fillmore and the Compromise of 1850

8. President Fillmore and the Compromise of 1850

Following President Zachary Taylor's death, Millard Fillmore took office. He supported the Compromise of 1850 that added new states from the Mexican cession and attempted to resolve long-standing controversies over slavery.

President Franklin Pierce's Politics and Economics

9. President Franklin Pierce's Politics and Economics

In the wake of the Compromise of 1850, President Franklin Pierce pursued an aggressive agenda of expansion. In this lesson, find out why it inflamed sectional tensions, and why he wasn't re-nominated for a second term.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
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Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
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