Lesson Plans

When Washington Crossed the Delaware

Pair the picture book, When Washington Crossed the Delaware, with primary sources  to have students practice close reading of both texts and maps while investigating the events leading up to and following this key accomplishment in the Revolutionary War. After, students can research a current event and create a map based on their learning along…

Pulling Down the Statue

Students analyze, then compare and contrast primary source images to investigate the historical removal of a monument. Next students read articles to to investigate contemporary events related to statue removals, then write an op-ed article that links their study of the past to the present situation.

The Art of Tribute

What can you learn about people by analyzing statues created to memorialize them? Who is worthy of a monument? Students consider these questions and more as they analyze primary sources. After, students research and evaluate the building of historical statues and monuments in the United States. Students then either create a drawing or small prototype of…

Monumental Men

George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, and Theodore Roosevelt made significant contributions to the United States. Through the lens of both primary and secondary sources, students learn about the characters and contributions of these presidents and determine for themselves the qualities and accomplishments that make someone, including themselves, worthy of a lasting tribute. The lesson…

Ancient Rome’s Veterans with Disabilities: Roman Accounts and U.S. Veteran Comparisons

Students compare how two societies separated by centuries think about and act toward veterans who live with a disability.

The Magna Carta: Due Process from King John to the 14th Amendment and Beyond

Students trace both the origins and results of the Magna Carta in the context of the U.S. Constitution and the 14th Amendment, then consider a contemporary case related to law enforcement robots.

Political Parties – Intermediate

Students investigate the two-party system in the United States and analyze partisan priorities, then create political parties that speak to issues affecting young people.

Engine Company 54 lost 15 men, 9/11/01

Through analysis of a collage created post 9/11, students consider how art can help us to process and understand difficult events. After, they collect everyday materials to create a piece of art and an accompanying curator note that reflects on a contemporary event.

Pandemic and Civic Virtue: The American Red Cross and the Influenza Pandemic of 1918

Historical primary sources provide examples of civic virtue–that is, of citizens dedicating themselves to the common welfare, even at the cost of their own interests. By examining such sources, students can reflect on how civic virtue was practiced in the past, and how the concept might apply today. 

News, Perspective, Bias – Intermediate

Through the lens of the Boston Massacre, students think critically about presenter bias and how it can influence public perception. Next, they compare and contrast headlines presented by different news outlets and reflect on the importance of recognizing bias and taking multiple perspectives into account when reviewing stories and drawing conclusions about events.