Teaching Critical Thinking Creatively
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With this assessment, students will evaluate the events they discussed relating to the West in the late 1800s, generate three adjectives to better describe the west than just “wild,” and then use evidence from the unit to describe their reasoning on a one-page assessment. The idea behind this assessment is that the west is so much more than just “wild.” Students will engage in a thoughtful discussion about what the west really was in this time – in all its complexity.
This assessment requires critical thinking and the use of evidence, but it’s provided at a level that middle school students can access. It’s linked to all of the lesson from the Peacefield History American West Unit.
You can view more in the preview here – American West Assessment
8.3a.1 – Students will examine the effects of the transcontinental railroad on the movement toward westward expansion.
8.3a.2 – Students will examine examples of Native American resistance to the western encroachment, including the Sioux Wars and the flight and surrender of Chief Joseph and the Nez Perce.
8.3a.3 – Students will examine United States and New York State policies toward Native Americans, such as the displacement of Native Americans from traditional lands, creation of reservations, efforts to assimilate Native Americans through the creation of boarding schools, the Dawes Act, and the Indian Reorganization Act and the Native Americans’ various responses to these policies.
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