Teaching Critical Thinking Creatively
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This lesson provides a fun and interactive way for students to practice analyzing geographic context and gain content knowledge about each of the territorial additions in the mid-1800s. I’ve included two different versions. The first is for classroom use, and the second is for distance learning. Given that distance learning is NOT THE SAME as the classroom experience, I’ve taken great pains to make sure that students can complete this lesson independently online. There are unique digital activities and each slide is provided with an audio recording for students who struggle with reading. The audio files are also included.
For the classroom version, there are five stations that can be set up around the room for students to visit. Each of the five stations has a visually appealing map and timeline that discuss the major events relating to the addition of that territory to the United States. Students utilize a graphic organizer to label the territories, learn a few key vocabulary and by utilizing the timeline, they can describe the Geographic Context of each territory added.
The Gadsden Purchase is provided as an example, and then students also learn about the Oregon Country, the Texas Annexation, the Florida Cession, the Mexican Cession, the Louisiana Purchase.
This lesson includes a 1 page lesson plan, 6 printable station visuals (in sizes 8.5×11 and 11×17), and a 2 page graphic organizer (with a 2 page key) and an exit ticket.
This lesson plan is linked with NYS Social Studies standards, however, I’m sure you could add your own.
This zip file includes a PowerPoint version (fully editable), a PDF version and a link to a Google Slides version.
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