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Early History of the Midwest

1.0 Lesson Plan Details

Early History in the Midwest
Day Number 3
Author: Marla Giaimo
Grade: 4
Expected Duration: 45 Minutes
Compare and contrast
Pulling information from the text
View a situation with multiple perspectives

1.1 Integration of Learning Outcomes/Objectives
Students will be able to describe the lives of Midwest Native Americans.
Students will be able to describe the lives of settlers on the frontier.
Students will be able to distinguish fact from opinion.
Students will gain an understanding of the same situation from multiple perspectives.

1.2 Standards PA Civics, History, Economics, Geography & NCSS Themes
PA Standards
8.1.4.B: Distinguish between fact and opinion from multiple points of view, and primary
sources as related to historical events.
7.3.4.A: Identify the human characteristics of places and regions using the fol-
lowing criteria:
Economic activities
Political activities

NCSS Theme
NCSS.1.3.g ...challenge learners to examine, interpret, and analyze the interactions of hu-
man beings and their physical environments

1.3 Anticipatory Set
Before starting the lesson, have students reflect on yesterdays geography and climate
lesson. Have the students think of one thing they learned and be ready to share it if
called on. On the board up front, call on a couple students and write their fact up on
the board.
While they are thinking about the geography of the midwest, ask the students who they
think the first people to live there were. Each student will have a KWL chart, which has a
spot at the bottom to write their answer to the verbal question. This will be discussed in a
few minutes.
Take a minute to make a KWL chart on the board. Explain what each column on the chart
is for, even if most of the students know how to fill the chart out. This way, if there is a
student (or several students) who do not know what to do, they will not be singled out.
Have students fill out the K column and the W column. Give them about three minutes
to jot down their facts. Using the board as the class example, ask the students for a few of
their answers and put them on the board.
What do we already know about the Midwest?
What do we want to know about the Midwest?
The information on their charts should be based on their own knowledge.
Students are to work on this independently, and should be encouraged to NOT use the
examples from the board, but come up with their own points.

1.4 Procedures
Re-ask the students who they think the first people to live in the Midwest were.
Students (if not already sitting in desk formations with four/five per group) will arrange
themselves into groups of four or five. Within each group, have each student discuss their
answer to the question and a brief reason why. As a group, they will come to a general con-
sensus of who they think lived in the Midwest first. A poll will be taken from the group
spokesperson and one answer per group will be tallied on the board.
The answer will be given that the Native Americans were the first people to live in the
Midwest, long before the pioneers lived in the area.
Before the articles are handed out, the teacher is to give a brief overview of what the stu-
dents can expect to read in their articles
You will each receive two articles. One article will talk about the Native Americans
who were living in the Midwest. The second article will discuss the Pioneers as they
were first settling themselves in the Midwest. Both of the articles will be mainly about
how each group lived and what their lifestyles were like. As you read the first article
and then the second, you will be seeing some things that make the two groups of people
very different from each other. You will also see traits that make them similar. It will
be your job to notice what makes them different and what makes them similar. To do
this, we will be using a Venn Diagram. Could everybody please look at their charts?
For the circle that says Native American on top, you will put facts about the way of life
for Native Americans. For the circle that says Pioneers on top, you will put facts about
the way of life for Pioneers. In the part where the circles overlap, you will put facts that

are the same for both ways of life (for Native Americans and Pioneers). This is called
comparing and contrasting. While I am only asking that you read and use the two arti-
cles for this task, if you feel like being a superstar, you may also use your textbook for
extra information, which I would recommend for filling out your Venn Diagram. In
each of your groups I am also going to place an additional article. It is an overview of
the Midwest, however, it has a little part about the history of the Midwest that you may
find quite helpful.
Now the students (still in their groups) will be given two articles each, as well as the article
on the Overview of the Midwest. The first article will be about the Native Americans in the
Midwest and the second article will be about the pioneers in the Midwest. Concepts will be
mainly focused on the way of life for each group of people. The students will sit in their
groups, but read the article independently.
After the articles have been read, the students will fill out a Venn diagram, which will
compare and contrast the Native Americans way of life with the Pioneers way of life.
Students should aim to have at least three facts per section of the Venn diagram.
Once the Venn diagram is completed, students will talk within their groups about what they
put within their diagrams. Students may add points they heard another classmate share.
After the groups have discussed their comparisons and contrasts with each other, they may
turn and talk to a neighboring group and share answers, gaining new information from each
other that may have been overlooked.

1.5 Differentiation
Hearing Impaired: Give student a written sheet that describes what will be happening in the
lesson along
with pictures next to the definitions of the vocabulary. When giving instructions, stand in
front of the student so he/she can read your lips. It is also important for the student to see
your example of the KWL chart so they can see an example of what they will be doing.

Developmental Delay: This student would be paired with one of his/her classmates so
that if the student had anything that he/she didnt understand or was having trouble, there
is someone he/she can immediately ask questions to if the teacher is busy with another stu-
dent or group. The exception would be made for this child, even when the work is to be complet-
ed independently.

1.6 Closure
After the Venn Diagrams have been completed and discussed, each student will fill out the
final column in their KWL chart (the L column).
Call on a few students to share what they learned in the lesson and add it the L column on
the class KWL chart (on the board).
I want everyone to put your papers face down in a pile in the middle of the group of
desks. The assigned paper collector will now come around and gather your Venn Dia-
grams and KWL charts. You will get them back once I have looked at them.
Grades for these assignments will be based on completion, how much the students
put into their work, how well they worked, their level of focus on the task at hand,
and how well they worked within their groups (check to see that equal effort was
put in by all students).

I cant wait to read all of your answers! Now, we are going to have a short quiz that
will show me how much we learned today. You must do this on your own and without
the articles (and textbook). Do your best, and think back on todays lesson if you get
Students will finish with a short quiz that will assess how much they learned from the arti-
cles. This is to be completed independently to see how much each student knows.
Once you are finished your quiz, please lay it face down so nobody can peek at your an-
swers! To get us ready for our lesson tomorrow, I want you to each draw a picture of how
you got to school this morning. I would like each of you to think about how transportation
is important to a region and its people. Tomorrow we will learn there are many types of
transportation and see how they influence the Midwest.

1.7 Formative/Summative Assessment of Students
Questioning and observing the students during the lesson
KWL chart
Meets objective for distinguishing fact from opinion
Venn Diagram
Meets objectives for observing the same situation from multiple points of view
Meets objective for being able to challenge learners to examine, interpret, and analyze
the interactions of human beings and their physical environments
Quiz at the end of the lesson to summarize what they personally learned and what they re-
member from the lesson.
Meets objective for distinguishing fact from opinion

1.8 Materials/Equipment
Student Materials/Reading Resources
KWL Chart
Venn Diagram Worksheet
Textbook: Social Studies: States and Regions
Harcourt Social Studies: States and Regions. (2007). Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Print.
Article from the Web based on the Pioneers
Our Story: Life in a Sod House
Article from the Web based on the Native Americans
The Indians at the Time of Contact, 1600-1850
Article from the Web based on History of the Midwest
History of the Midwest Region, Part 1
This website has the article print out for a student view, which is what would be used
for this lesson.
Teacher Materials/Resources for Lesson Design
KWL Chart filled in with answers from the board
Venn Diagram Worksheet with examples

Textbook: Social Studies: States and Regions
Article from the Web based on the Pioneers
Homes on the Prairie: Early Settlement
Article from the Web based on the Native Americans
The Indians at the Time of Contact, 1600-1850
Article from the Web based on History of the Midwest
History of the Midwest Region, Part 1
This website has the article print out for a student view, which requires an account to be
made with the website. When teaching this lesson, an account should be made, as the
information is good, reliable information that would really help the student during the
entire unit.

Our Story: Life in a Sod
SI 1. Source is an educa-
tional website (.edu)
2. The article is put out
by the Smithsonian
National Museum of
American History
3. Source has related
suggestions to sup-
plement the subject
matter, such as
books, activities and
field trips
This source is easily
accessed with a link.
The History of the Up-
per Midwest: An Over-
view: The Indians at the
Time of Contact, 1600-
SI 1. Source is a govern-
ment website (.gov)
2. Article is written by a
professor of Ameri-
can History
3. Articles on this site
are also in the Li-
brary of Congress
This source is easily
accessed with a link.

History of the Midwest
Region, Part 1
MI 1. Source is a means
of gaining supple-
mentary information
and materials to go
with the lesson
2. The information
comes from one par-
ticular author, with
the edHelper com-
3. Website is not a
government or an
webpage (.com)
Is accessible easiest if
printed from its online
format. If the students
were to go online to
gain access, they would
have to scroll and half-
way down, past the links
for activities. This web-
site is a wonderful re-
source to supplement
the lesson. I would not
use this if the students
had to access anything
online. I would use this
to print out the infor-
mation in the student
Textbook: Social Stud-
ies: States and Regions
MI 1. Source is a textbook
that each student
will have a copy of
(provided by the
2. Source is trusted
and selected by the
school district
3. Information is ac-
cepted as complete
truths, and therefore
used to base much
information on.
Information is easily
accessed when the
specific page numbers
are given.

1.9 Technology
The only technology used is the computer, which was used to find the articles which are used
in the lesson plan. Other than that, a Smartboard may be used for the KWL chart and the Venn
diagram if it is available at the time. Otherwise, a chalkboard/whiteboard would have the same
function (essentially).

2.1 Reflection on Planning
Initially, I had started with a different concept all together for my lesson plan. As I was writing
down my lesson plans draft, I would change things here and there. Through making these
changes, I would have an idea that would be better suited for the information I was looking to
teach in my lesson. Even after I had my main concepts decided on, I was still taking small
points here and there to better tailor to the needs of this lesson. As far as improvement, I would
try to find articles for this lesson that are not internet based. A main issue of mine when creat-
ing lessons is lack of information deemed credible. Although the information I tend to use is

correct (and I have verified it as such), it may not be on the same level as a government web-
site and the like. I feel as though this lesson would be successful due to the fact that I have the
students working in groups, if nothing else. I do feel that certain tasks must be completed inde-
pendently so I can see who knows what, however, it can be equally as beneficial to students to
work in groups. The group work in my lesson plan allows students to lean on each other and
practice working cooperatively within a group toward a same goal. My concern would be
linked very closely with the strength of this lesson. While group work is very beneficial in
many ways, it is also has the possibility for students to slack and allow his or her classmates to
do the work for them. The biggest challenge with this in mind would be to make sure each
child participates equally.

Early History of the Midwest: Content Notes


Frontier: Lands beyond settlement
Pioneer: A person who first settles a place
Sod: A layer of soil held together by the roots of grasses
Self-sufficient: Having to do things for oneself and make everything to fit ones own needs
Adapt: Change ones way of life to survive in the new environment

What to Know


Central and Great Plains

Inhabited first by the Sioux Native Americans, who lived in villages along the riv-
ers and plains
Land was flat and treeless
Grass across the Prairie was very tall, growing in some places as tall as six feet
(more in some cases).
Upon settling in the Midwest, Pioneer families faced many hardships of the land
Endless days of heat (could exceed 120 degrees)
Grasshopper swarms
Raging winds
Long, cold winters
Example: During the winter of 1886, the temperatures were so low and the condi-
tions so harsh that many horses and cattle died when their breath froze on the end of
their noses, restricting them from breathing
Due to lack of trees, homes were made with sod
Sod is the top layer of Earth that includes grass, its roots, and the dirt clinging to
the roots

Primary Sources: Pioneer Life
Everyone, including children, did a lot of work
People needed to clear trees and bushes, and split logs for firewood
Many people lived in houses made from sod. Only a few people lived in houses made
of logs because few trees were available
Crops were planted and harvested by the pioneers, which served as their food
Closest neighbors were miles away, which is why the pioneers were self-sufficient
Most sod homes only had one room and were 16 feet by 20 feet
Many settlers planted flower seeds on top of their sod roofs
Not all of the early settlers stayed in the Midwest. Some pioneers went back home
while others continued to travel West
Native Americans Way of Life

The Midwest Native Americans lived in the region for centuries before the settlers be-
gan to arrive

The Sioux Nation was made up of seven major tribes
The Native Americans in the Midwest were also called the Dakota
The Sioux captured and learned to ride wild horses in place of using canoes on the riv-
ers (after the arrival of the Spanish explorers)
The Sioux moved from place to place, never building permanent farms or villages in
order to follow the buffalo herd
Inhabited first by the Sioux Native Americans, who lived in villages along the rivers
and plains
Fished and hunted
Moved to the Great Plains when European settlers began coming to the area



Early History of the Midwest Quiz

Multiple Choice: Read the question carefully and select the best answer.

1. When settling in the Midwest, the pioneers came up against many challenges. Which of the following
is not a hardship of the pioneers?

A. Raging winds and rainstorms B. Extreme temperatures of heat and cold

C. Rodent infestations D. Periods of drought

2. Due to lack of trees in the Midwest region, the homes of the early settlers were made with sod. Sod is:

A. A layer of soil held together by roots of grasses B. An early type of cement

C. Prairie grass tied together in bundles D. Large amounts of sand mixed
with water

3. How many major tribes were a part of the Sioux Nation?

A. Four B. Seven

C. Thirteen D. Twenty-Two

4. The Sioux Native Americans hunted and fished as their means for gaining food. Even with the varied
types of food they would eat, the main animal they used for food was:

A. Salmon B. Fox

C. Snake D. Buffalo

5. Before the pioneers, Europeans traveled through the Midwest region during the 1600s. What did the
Sioux Native Americans have that the Europeans wanted?

A. Corn B. Animal skins

C. Canoes D. Shells

Open Ended: Using 1-2 sentences, answer the questions below to the best of your ability.

6. What did you find most interesting in todays lesson?




7. What is still confusing to you or what do you still have questions about?