Civil War

Civil War Unit Scope

This document supports teachers in organizing the content and tasks for a unit of study.

Essential Questions

These questions guide teachers in driving instruction for students.

How did the Civil War...

  • challenge the Constitution?
  • affect the definition of freedom?
  • affect race relations in the United States?
  • teacher’s choice

Key Topics

These topics are critical themes within the big topic area.

Major Figures and Symbols Slavery and Abolitionism Critical Battles

Recommended Newsela Materials

The most relevant articles are in the first text set. The additional text sets include materials to address the topics

Articles

This section is organized by subtopic so that teachers can match relevant content to critical themes. These articles can help you target student understanding for each key topic.

Major Figures and Symbols Slavery and Abolitionism Critical Battles

Civil War: A Defining Moment in U.S. History

Presidential Profile: Abraham Lincoln

The Abolitionists: Sojourner Truth

Military Leaders: Robert E. Lee

The Abolitionists: Frederick Douglass

Confederate flag history through art

Virginia students suspended for wearing Confederate flags on clothes

Primary Sources: The Fugitive Slave Act of 1850

Primary Sources: Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation

Famous Speeches: Frederick Douglass, “Men of Color, To Arms!”

Primary Sources: Excerpts from Harriet Jacobs’ Slave Narrative Part 1

Black Women and the Abolition of Slavery

Museum at Stone Mountain, Georgia to focus on blacks in the Civil War

Reconstruction: a time of political and social upheaval in America

Expansion and Reform: The Underground Railroad and the Coming of War

Famous Speeches: Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address

Time Machine (1864): GeneralSherman’s march through Georgia

Retracing an ancestor’s footsteps at Gettysburg

Surrounded by a booming battle, in a museum

Formative Tasks

The tasks are organized by subtopic and provide teachers with relevant resources for classroom implementation. Teachers can use these activities and assessments to determine student learning.

Major Figures and Symbols Slavery and Abolitionism Critical Battles

PRO Activities

PRO Teacher Resource

Civil War: A Defining Moment in U.S. History

Lesson Plan

Symbols of the Past

PRO Extensions

  • Recommended Annotations
  • Teacher Annotations

PRO Assessments

Adapted Write Prompts
Prompt A: What role did leadership play in shaping the perspectives of the Union and Confederacy during the Civil War?

Prompt B: In what ways do symbols of conflict or war affect current perspectives? What connections can you make to other controversial symbols of war?

Quiz: Reflect on student progress Binder.

 

PRO Activities

PRO Teacher Resource

Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation

 

PRO Extensions

  • Recommended Annotations
  • Teacher Annotations

PRO Assessments

Adapted Write Prompts
Prompt A: Make an argument about whether slavery was the cause of the Civil War. What evidence does the Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation provide to support your argument?

Prompt B: What were the ramifications of the Civil War on Reconstruction in the South? What historical and modern policies can be traced to the “Black Codes” of Reconstruction?

Quiz: Reflect on student progress Binder.

PRO Activities

PRO Teacher Resource

Famous Speeches: Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address

 

PRO Extensions

  • Recommended Annotations
  • Teacher Annotations

PRO Assessments

Adapted Write Prompts
Prompt A: Why was Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address so influential in defining the concepts of freedom and equality in Civil War America? What parts of the speech resonate with you the most? Why?

Prompt B: Modern day historians call the Civil War the deadliest war even though more American soldiers died in WWII. Why have we remembered the Civil War as the deadliest?

Quiz: Reflect on student progress Binder

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