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TeachersFirst: Lesson Ideas for Lincoln - TeachersFirst

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1 to 12
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For Lincoln's birthday or any time of year, here are ideas to better acquaint students with the life, times, and work of the 16th president of the United States. These ...more
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For Lincoln's birthday or any time of year, here are ideas to better acquaint students with the life, times, and work of the 16th president of the United States. These ideas feature both technology-enhanced lessons and non-tech experiences. Choose from the lesson titles (sorted by level) to find lesson ideas best suited to your students and the subjects you teach.

tag(s): civil war (145), debate (41), lincoln (86), presidents (131)

In the Classroom

No matter what subject you teach, you can find something to fit in your plans for Presidents Day or the Lincoln Bicentennial. Use these ideas and adapt at will. You can even email an idea to your teacher colleague to save a friend time!

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I Do Solemnly Swear...Presidential Inaugurations - The Library of Congress

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4 to 12
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The Library of Congress has created this excellent resource that features over 400 images and 2,000 digital files related to the inaugurations of George Washington through George W....more
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The Library of Congress has created this excellent resource that features over 400 images and 2,000 digital files related to the inaugurations of George Washington through George W. Bush (in 2001). There are video clips, references, diary entries, letters, and more. This site requires Real Player and/or QuickTime. You can get both from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): inauguration (11), washington (36)

In the Classroom

Why not feature an "inauguration a day" during the week prior to the current inauguration? Use the many images to create a Simplybox (explained here) of inauguration information for students to dig though. With older students, have cooperative learning groups create their own Simplybox. All of the Library of Congress resources are in the public domain, so students can USE these images to create new products, such as a photomontage of an inauguration topic: bands, dress, buzzwords, etc.

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Online NewsHour: Inaugural Fashion - PBS

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4 to 12
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Are you looking for a new way to get your students attention in history class? This site is perfect for those students who view fashion as the only thing worth ...more
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Are you looking for a new way to get your students attention in history class? This site is perfect for those students who view fashion as the only thing worth their attention! The site focuses on the gowns that the first ladies wore to the inaugural ceremony (from a variety of time periods). The significance of the gowns is discussed. Several photos are included. The video clips date back to 2001 and no longer work. For commentary and speculation on what Mrs. Obama and the Obama children will wear, see this article from Womens Wear Daily

tag(s): fashion (10), inauguration (11)

In the Classroom

Share the pictures of the gowns on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Have students research an inaugural ceremony and write a blog entry (from the first lady of their choice) discussing the inaugural ceremony (and what they wore). Or have your budding journalists write a mock-commentary on the political "message" sent by a chosen first lady via her fashion choices.

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A New Birth of Freedom - Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies

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K to 12
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Are you gearing up for Inauguration Day with your students? Check out this site, dedicated to the "New Birth of Freedom." Visit the History link, learn about the events for ...more
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Are you gearing up for Inauguration Day with your students? Check out this site, dedicated to the "New Birth of Freedom." Visit the History link, learn about the events for the 2009 Inauguration, see photos, view video clips, and more. The videos require Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): inauguration (11), lincoln (86)

In the Classroom

Assign a student "pre-inaugural reporter" from the class each day during the month of January to share the latest news and plans about the Inauguration. Have cooperative learning groups compare historical information on inaugurations. Then have the students write a paper or blog entry explaining what their own inauguration would be like if they were ever elected president.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Presidents of the United States

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3 to 8
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Although TeachersFirst doesn't typically review hotlists, this one provides a great deal of information on the presidents, Inauguration Day, the White House, and other "presidential"...more
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Although TeachersFirst doesn't typically review hotlists, this one provides a great deal of information on the presidents, Inauguration Day, the White House, and other "presidential" topics. There are printables, lesson plans (many with standards), photos, video clips, and more. The link Presidential Inaugurations lists countless resources to use in your classroom. Some of the links require Adobe Acrobat or Flash. You can get both from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): inauguration (11)

In the Classroom

Have students use this site to investigate one aspect of the presidency as an Inauguration Day or Presidents Day project. Cooperative learning groups could choose a topic of interest and then create a wiki page or Bookemon book reviewed here on their topic.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Inauguration Day Events - Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies

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3 to 10
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This site shares Inauguration Day events: Morning Worship Service, Procession to the Capitol, Vice President's Swearing In Ceremony, President's Swearing In Ceremony, Inaugural Address,...more
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This site shares Inauguration Day events: Morning Worship Service, Procession to the Capitol, Vice President's Swearing In Ceremony, President's Swearing In Ceremony, Inaugural Address, Departure of the Outgoing President, Inaugural Luncheon, Inaugural Parade, and the Inaugural Ball. Each topic has a Learn More link and provides authentic photos and historical information.

tag(s): inauguration (11)

In the Classroom

Share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector on Inauguration Day. Divide your class into nine groups and have each group learn about one of the "events" of the day. Have the groups share their "event" with the class on a PowerPoint.

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NewsHour Extra Lesson Plan: What is the Role of Civil Disobedience - PBS

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6 to 12
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This site, affiliated with the PBS NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, presents a lesson plan related to the history of civil disobedience. The site provides a short handout for students, and...more
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This site, affiliated with the PBS NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, presents a lesson plan related to the history of civil disobedience. The site provides a short handout for students, and a more detailed summary for teachers to prepare for discussion on civil disobedience and its role in creating change. There is also a collection of historical quotes focused on the issue, including the words of Martin Luther King, Jr., Henry David Thoreau, and Bishop Desmond Tutu. You need Acrobat Reader to print the quotes and other downloadable documents. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): civil rights (117)

In the Classroom

Encouraging students to think of disobedience (of any kind) as a positive force for change will delight some students and confuse and trouble others. Depending upon their age and their intellectual and moral development, teachers should be prepared for these varied reactions. Although there is brief mention in the lesson plan of Cindy Sheehan, the anti-war protestor, there is no discussion of other contemporary issues related to terrorism, freedom versus security, or privacy. Teachers should also be prepared to have these topics enter the discussion. The historical quotes would make good bulletin board fodder or discussion (either verbal or written) prompts. Maybe try one on your class blog!
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Virtual Freedom Shrine - National Exchange Club

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7 to 12
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This searchable, no-frills site brings together thirty historical documents that were instrumental in creating the freedoms enjoyed by Americans. It's all here - the Mayflower Compact,...more
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This searchable, no-frills site brings together thirty historical documents that were instrumental in creating the freedoms enjoyed by Americans. It's all here - the Mayflower Compact, the 19th Amendment, Martin Luther King, Jr,'s "I have a dream" speech, and much more. Good reference site for a history or civics class.

tag(s): bill of rights (28), constitution (79), presidents (131), speech (92), speeches (17)

In the Classroom

Have each student in your class research one of these documents or speeches. Challenge students to create a multi-media presentation: PowerPoint, blog, wiki, or video. Share these documents around Martin Luther King's birthday or President's Day.

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Powerful Days in Black and White - Kodak

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4 to 12
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Kodak's site featuring the photos of Charles Moore contains many images of Dr. King and the nonviolent struggle for racial equality in the American south during the 1960s. These are...more
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Kodak's site featuring the photos of Charles Moore contains many images of Dr. King and the nonviolent struggle for racial equality in the American south during the 1960s. These are striking images. Preview before sharing with younger students.

tag(s): africa (180), african american (113), civil rights (117), martin luther king (37)

In the Classroom

Share the photos on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Discuss the pictures as a class. What were the lives of those in the photos like? Have students choose one photo that was the most powerful and write a journal entry about that photo.

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Day of Service - U.S. Government

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4 to 12
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Here's a site that asks students to live up to Dr. King's ideals by engaging in a service project to help those less fortunate than they. Learn about King, his ...more
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Here's a site that asks students to live up to Dr. King's ideals by engaging in a service project to help those less fortunate than they. Learn about King, his ideals, and how to serve.

tag(s): africa (180), african american (113), civil rights (117), martin luther king (37)

In the Classroom

Teachers looking for a meaningful way to honor Dr. King might find this approach attractive. Share the Why Serve link with your class and discuss how serving can change their lives. Why not come up with a class community service project to do in honor of Dr. King?

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March on Washington Lesson - PBS Newshour

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6 to 12
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This lesson, from the web site for the PBS Newshour, offers both a set of structuring questions about integration and racism and a set of resources that documents Dr. King ...more
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This lesson, from the web site for the PBS Newshour, offers both a set of structuring questions about integration and racism and a set of resources that documents Dr. King and the struggle for equal rights in America. The lesson includes links to important documents (some PDF files, others require Flash), extension activities, thinking questions, audio and video footage, and correlations to National Standards in history, civics, culture, and more. This site requires Adobe Acrobat and Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): africa (180), civil rights (117), martin luther king (37)

In the Classroom

This lesson plan is ready to use and easy to follow! The extension activities offer some excellent higher order thinking questions. After sharing video footage with your students, why not project one of the extension activities on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Have students create a blog answering the questions in the extension activities.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Abraham Lincoln Library Education - Abraham Lincoln Library

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4 to 8
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This site offers information for those visiting the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum. However, even if you can't physically go to the museum there are some create resources!...more
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This site offers information for those visiting the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum. However, even if you can't physically go to the museum there are some create resources! If you click on the Teacher Resources, you will find several activity guides to use in your classroom. Learn more about the Gettysburg Address, First Ladies, Women's History Month, Black History Month, Christmas at the Whitehouse, and more! Most of the guides require Adobe Acrobat. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): lincoln (86), presidents (131)

In the Classroom

Use the activity guides in your classroom. Most include printables, higher order thinking questions, and even activities that could easily be displayed and discussed using your interactive whiteboard or projector.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Monitor - Lincoln's Secret Weapon - Nova

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5 to 12
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The PBS Nova site about the Civil War ironclad the Monitor offers some unexpected treats. Students can see whether they can run the steam engine without blowing it up, and ...more
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The PBS Nova site about the Civil War ironclad the Monitor offers some unexpected treats. Students can see whether they can run the steam engine without blowing it up, and the curious can take a simulated 360 degree tour of various parts of the ship. This site includes several lesson plans (most linked to standards), and more. You'll need a speedy connection and the Flash plug-in, but this one's a great Civil War diversion. You can get Flash from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): civil war (145), lincoln (86)

In the Classroom

Share the interactives on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Have students work in cooperative learning groups to try some of the science experiments at this site. Challenge students to create fictitious blog entries (written by Lincoln) about what they learn at this site.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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This Day in the Civil War

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4 to 12
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Those interested in a different take on the Civil War will enjoy this one. Each day offers a different set of events drawn from Civil War history, along with links ...more
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Those interested in a different take on the Civil War will enjoy this one. Each day offers a different set of events drawn from Civil War history, along with links to oddities such as Civil War recipes (tread cautiously), trivia, birthdays, interactive puzzles, and the like. There are also message boards. So if you allow students to navigate independently, be sure to watch carefully!

tag(s): civil war (145), lincoln (86)

In the Classroom

While it's short on pure education, there's a wealth of spice here that could liven up a Civil War unit.

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Civil War Time-Line - A Nation Divided - The History Place

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4 to 12
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This site, created by The History Place offers a chronological listing of Civil War events (with pictures) and is easy to navigate. This site features topics such as Fort Sumter...more
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This site, created by The History Place offers a chronological listing of Civil War events (with pictures) and is easy to navigate. This site features topics such as Fort Sumter Attacked, Gettysburg, Shiloh, and several others. The timeline format is easy to understand. The photos are authentic and informative.

tag(s): civil war (145), lincoln (86)

In the Classroom

Use this site for research about the Civil War. Have cooperative learning groups research various battles of the Civil War. Or have students create their own interactive timelines using a tool such as XTimeline (explained here).

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The life of Abraham Lincoln - History Place

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4 to 12
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Although this site is "plain vanilla," it offers some nice research information and photos of five "Lincoln" topics: Lincoln Becomes President, the Emancipation Proclamation, the Battle...more
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Although this site is "plain vanilla," it offers some nice research information and photos of five "Lincoln" topics: Lincoln Becomes President, the Emancipation Proclamation, the Battle of Gettysburg, the Kansas-Nebraska Act, and the Dred Scott Decision. Nearly all of this site is displayed in a timeline format. There are some basic advertisements at this site, nothing too distracting.

tag(s): emancipation proclamation (12), gettysburg (26), gettysburg address (18), lincoln (86)

In the Classroom

Have students recreate their own "Lincoln timeline" highlighting one are of Lincoln's life and legacy. Have students work in cooperative learning groups to create interactive timelines using a tool such as XTimeline (explained here).

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Abraham Lincoln Online - Abraham Lincoln Online

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K to 12
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An extensive online collection of Lincoln information. This site has nearly everything you could want to learn about Lincoln. Some of the highlights include speeches, lesson ideas,...more
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An extensive online collection of Lincoln information. This site has nearly everything you could want to learn about Lincoln. Some of the highlights include speeches, lesson ideas, "This Week in History" (Lincoln history, that is), and more. Be sure to check out the Education link to find many classroom resource. Some of the links require Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): lincoln (86)

In the Classroom

Take advantage of these ready to use classroom resources. There are lessons available for grades K-12. Use this site to share the speeches of the famous president. Have students dissect the words of one of the speeches, break it down into "today's language."
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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African-American Soldiers in the Civil War - Library of Congress

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6 to 12
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The Library of Congress demonstrates the depth of its archival image and documents collection in this site, which records first-hand accounts of the accomplishments and difficulties...more
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The Library of Congress demonstrates the depth of its archival image and documents collection in this site, which records first-hand accounts of the accomplishments and difficulties of African-American soldiers during the Civil War. Although rather "plain vanilla" this site is definitely one to explore if you or one of your students are interested in the Civil War.

tag(s): africa (180), african american (113), civil war (145), lincoln (86)

In the Classroom

The site could be the basis for dozens of lesson ideas, as well as an ideal starting point for a research paper. Have students view authentic letters from Abraham Lincoln on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Challenge students to write a letter (or a blog) in response to Lincoln's letter.

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Crisis of the Union - Univ. of Pennsylvania

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6 to 12
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The department of history at the University of Pennsylvania developed this searchable collection of primary source materials dealing with the Civil War. The collection includes editorial...more
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The department of history at the University of Pennsylvania developed this searchable collection of primary source materials dealing with the Civil War. The collection includes editorial cartoons, images, and manuscripts, all grouped by subject and time period. While some of the material will require interpretation, this would be a useful site for secondary research that requires the use of primary sources. Some of the sources require Adobe Acrobat. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): civil war (145), lincoln (86), primary sources (86)

In the Classroom

Share this site with your students while researching the Civil War.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Lincoln Goes to War - National Endowment for the Humanities

Grades
7 to 12
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Get inside of the mind of our sixteenth president with this thoughtful lesson plan that analyzes the complex factors that led to the Civil War. Using primary source documents, students...more
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Get inside of the mind of our sixteenth president with this thoughtful lesson plan that analyzes the complex factors that led to the Civil War. Using primary source documents, students become part of the decision-making process as they consider the critical issues that faced the nation as Lincoln came into office, debate the risks and benefits of withdrawing Union troops from Fort Sumter, and investigate the Confederate reaction to Lincoln's ultimate decision. Students take on the roles of Secessionists, Non-Secessionists, Unionists, Abolitionists, or Compromise Proponents. This lesson is aligned to National Standards.

tag(s): civil war (145), debate (41), lincoln (86), slavery (72), states (163)

In the Classroom

This lesson plan is ready to go and offers step by step instructions! Divide your class into five groups (based on the roles listed above). Allow them time to research and prepare for the debate. Consider having students tape the debate using YouTube or TeacherTube (explained here). Why not have each group (or student) write a blog defending their position (role).

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