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Lesson Plan

Bicentennial Lesson Plan

Nation to Nation: Treaties and Legislation between the Wabanaki Nations and the State of Maine

Grade Level: 9-12 Content Area: Social Studies
This lesson plan asks high school students to think critically about and look closely at documentation regarding the Nation-to-Nation relationship between the Wabanaki Tribes/Nations and the State of Maine. This lesson asks students to participate in discussions about morality and legislative actions over time. Students will gain experience examining and responding to primary and secondary sources by taking a close look at documents relating to the Maine Indian Claims Settlement Act of 1980 (MICSA) and the issues that preceded and have followed the Act.

Lesson Plan

Bicentennial Lesson Plan

Primary Sources: Maine Women's Causes and Influence before 1920

Grade Level: 6-8 Content Area: Social Studies
This lesson plan will give students the opportunity to read and analyze letters, literature, and other primary documents and articles of material culture from the MHS collections relating to the women of Maine between the end of the Revolutionary War through the national vote for women’s suffrage in 1920. Students will discuss issues including war relief (Civil War and World War I), suffrage, abolition, and temperance, and how the women of Maine mobilized for or in some cases helped to lead these movements.

Lesson Plan

Longfellow's Ripple Effect: Journaling With the Poet - "The Song of Hiawatha"

Grade Level: 6-8, 9-12 Content Area: English Language Arts, Social Studies
This lesson is part of a series of six lesson plans that will give students the opportunity to become familiar with the works of Longfellow while reflecting upon how his works speak to their own experiences.

Lesson Plan

Longfellow's Ripple Effect: Journaling With the Poet - "My Lost Youth"

Grade Level: 6-8, 9-12, Postsecondary Content Area: English Language Arts, Social Studies
This lesson is part of a series of six lesson plans that will give students the opportunity to become familiar with the works of Longfellow while reflecting upon how his works speak to their own experiences.

Lesson Plan

Bicentennial Lesson Plan

What Remains: Learning about Maine Populations through Burial Customs

Grade Level: 6-8 Content Area: English Language Arts, Social Studies, Visual & Performing Arts
This lesson plan will give students an overview of how burial sites and gravestone material culture can assist historians and archaeologists in discovering information about people and migration over time. Students will learn how new scholarship can help to dispel harmful archaeological myths, look into the roles of religion and ethnicity in early Maine and New England immigrant and colonial settlements, and discover how to track changes in population and social values from the 1600s to early 1900s based on gravestone iconography and epitaphs.

Lesson Plan

Bicentennial Lesson Plan

Maine's Acadian Community: "Evangeline," Le Grand Dérangement, and Cultural Survival

Grade Level: 9-12 Content Area: English Language Arts, Social Studies
This lesson plan will introduce students to the history of the forced expulsion of thousands of people from Acadia, the Romantic look back at the tragedy in Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's famous epic poem Evangeline and the heroine's adoption as an Acadian cultural figure, and Maine's Acadian community today, along with their relations with Acadian New Brunswick and Nova Scotia residents and others in the Acadian Diaspora. Students will read and discuss primary documents, compare and contrast Le Grand Dérangement to other forced expulsions in Maine history and discuss the significance of cultural survival amidst hardships brought on by treaties, wars, and legislation.

Lesson Plan

Bicentennial Lesson Plan

Wabanaki Studies: Out of Ash

Grade Level: 3-5, 6-8, 9-12 Content Area: Science & Engineering, Social Studies
This lesson plan will give middle and high school students a broad overview of the ash tree population in North America, the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) threatening it, and the importance of the ash tree to the Wabanaki people in Maine. Students will look at Wabanaki oral histories as well as the geological/glacial beginnings of the region we now know as Maine for a general understanding of how the ash tree came to be a significant part of Wabanaki cultural history and environmental history in Maine. Students will compare national measures to combat the EAB to the Wabanaki-led Ash Task Force’s approaches in Maine, will discuss the benefits and challenges of biological control of invasive species, the concept of climigration, the concepts of Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) and Indigenous Knowledge (IK) and how research scientists arrive at best practices for aiding the environment.

Lesson Plan

An Exploration into Maine's History

Grade Level: 3-5 Content Area: Social Studies
This investigation was designed to utilize the resources of the Maine Memory Network and the Library of Congress. Students will have the opportunity to create their own albums from MMN, research their local history, and that of the state of Maine. This is a progressive approach that begins with an investigation into Yarmouth, Maine’s history, however, it could easily be adapted for any home town. Part of the exploration includes suggested visits to the local historical society and discussions with the school historian. The creative writing piece calls for students to become someone who lived in their town 100 years ago; they find the information they need be research on MMN and the Library of Congress and then write and share their stories. Along each step of the way, students created, saved, and shared albums of materials related to their research and work on MMN. The second part of this lesson is designed to coincide with the study of the history of the state of Maine and of the United States.

Lesson Plan

Bicentennial Lesson Plan

Becoming Maine: The Votes for Statehood

Grade Level: 3-5 Content Area: Social Studies
Maine became a state in 1820 after separating from Massachusetts, but the call for statehood had begun long before the final vote. Why did it take so long? Was 1820 the right time? In this lesson, students will begin to place where Maine’s statehood fits into the broader narrative of 18th and 19th century American political history. They will have the opportunity to cast their own Missouri Compromise vote after learning about Maine’s long road to statehood.

Lesson Plan

Longfellow Studies: "Evangeline: A Tale of Acadie"--Selected Lines and Illustrations

Grade Level: 6-8, 9-12 Content Area: Social Studies, Visual & Performing Arts
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Maine's native son, is the epitome of Victorian Romanticism. Aroostook County is well acquainted with Longfellow's epic poem, Evangeline, because it is the story of the plight of the Acadians, who were deported from Acadie between 1755 and 1760. The descendants of these hard-working people inhabit much of Maine, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia. The students enjoy hearing the story and seeing the ink drawings. The illustrations are my interpretations. The collection took approximately two months to complete. The illustrations are presented in a Victorian-style folio, reminiscent of the family gathered in the parlor for a Sunday afternoon reading of Evangeline, which was published in 1847. Preparation Required/Preliminary Discussion: Have students read "Evangeline A Tale of Acadie". Give a background of the Acadia Diaspora. Suggested Follow-up Activities: Students could illustrate their own poems, as well as other Longfellow poems, such as: "Paul Revere's Ride," "The Village Blacksmith," or "The Children's Hour." "Tales of the Wayside Inn" is a colonial Canterbury Tales. The guest of the inn each tell stories. Student could write or illustrate their own characters or stories. Appropriate calligraphy assignments could include short poems and captions for their illustrations. Inks, pastels, watercolors, and colored pencils would be other appropriate illustrative media that could be applicable to other illustrated poems and stories. Each illustration in this exhibit was made in India ink on file folder paper. The dimensions, including the burgundy-colors mat, are 9" x 12". A friend made the calligraphy.

Lesson Plan

Longfellow Studies: "The Jewish Cemetery at Newport"

Grade Level: 6-8, 9-12 Content Area: English Language Arts, Social Studies
Longfellow's poem "The Jewish Cemetery at Newport" opens up the issue of the earliest history of the Jews in America, and the significant roles they played as businessmen and later benefactors to the greater community. The history of the building itself is notable in terms of early American architecture, its having been designed, apparently gratis, by the most noted architect of the day. Furthermore, the poem traces the history of Newport as kind of a microcosm of New England commercial cities before the industrialization boom. For almost any age student the poem could be used to open up interest in local cemeteries, which are almost always a wealth of curiousities and history. Longfellow and his friends enjoyed exploring cemeteries, and today our little local cemeteries can be used to teach little local histories and parts of the big picture as well. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow visited the Jewish cemetery in Newport, RI on July 9, 1852. His popular poem about the site, published two years later, was certainly a sympathetic portrayal of the place and its people. In addition to Victorian romantic musings about the "Hebrews in their graves," Longfellow includes in this poem references to the historic persecution of the Jews, as well as very specific references to their religious practices. Since the cemetery and the nearby synagogue were restored and protected with an infusion of funding just a couple years after Longfellow's visit, and later a congregation again assembled, his gloomy predictions about the place proved false (never mind the conclusion of the poem, "And the dead nations never rise again!"). Nevertheless, it is a fascinating poem, and an interesting window into the history of the nation's oldest extant synagogue.

Lesson Plan

Portland History: Lemuel Moody and the Portland Observatory

Grade Level: 3-5 Content Area: Social Studies
Lemuel Moody and the Portland Observatory Included are interesting facts to share with your students and for students, an interactive slide show available on-line at Maine Memory Network. The "Images" slide show allows students to place historical images of the Observatory in a timeline. Utilizing their observation skills students will place these images in chronological order by looking for changes within the built environment for clues. Also available is the "Maps" slide show, a series of maps from key eras in Portland's history. Students will answer the questions in the slide show to better understand the topography of Portland, the need for an Observatory and the changes in the landscape and the population centers.

Lesson Plan

Portland History: Construction, Preservation and Restoration of the Portland Observatory

Grade Level: 3-5, 6-8 Content Area: Science & Engineering, Social Studies
Included here are activities based in economics, mathematics, physics, social studies, civics and language arts. Students can debate the issues surrounding preservation and urban development as well as the changing value of money.

Lesson Plan

Portland History: Signalizing and Non-Verbal Communications at the Portland Observatory

Grade Level: 3-5 Content Area: English Language Arts, Social Studies, Visual & Performing Arts
This lesson is an overview of Captain Lemuel Moody's (builder of the Observatory) signaling system used at the Portland Observatory. Activities range from flag making to mapping and journal writing. The "Signals" slide show allows students to look at Captain Moody's general and private signals notebooks. Students are asked a series of questions about the notebooks and Moody's signaling system allowing for a better understanding of the principles behind the Observatory.

Lesson Plan

Portland History: Mapping Portland, 1690 - 1900

Grade Level: 6-8 Content Area: Social Studies
Historical maps, like all historical documents, can be interpreted in many ways. This lesson plan uses five maps to trace the development of Portland from its earliest settlements.

Lesson Plan

Longfellow Studies: The Writer's Hour - "Footprints on the Sands of Time"

Grade Level: 3-5 Content Area: English Language Arts, Social Studies
These lessons will introduce the world-famous American writer and a selection of his work with a compelling historical fiction theme. Students take up the quest: Who was HWL and did his poetry leave footprints on the sands of time? They will "tour" his Cambridge home through young eyes, listen, and discuss poems from a writer’s viewpoint, and create their own poems inspired by Longfellow's works. The interdisciplinary approach utilizes critical thinking skills, living history, technology integration, maps, photos, books, and peer collaboration. The mission is to get students keenly interested in what makes a great writer by using Longfellow as a historic role model. The lessons are designed for students at varying reading levels. Slow learners engage in living history with Alice’s fascinating search through the historic Craigie house, while gifted and talented students may dramatize the virtual tour as a monologue. Constant discovery and exciting presentations keep the magic in lessons. Remember that, "the youthful mind must be interested in order to be instructed." Students will build strong writing skills encouraging them to leave their own "footprints on the sands of time."

Lesson Plan

Portland History: The Portland Observatory and Thermometrics

Grade Level: 3-5, 6-8 Content Area: Science & Engineering, Social Studies
Thermometrics is a term coined by Moody to describe his weather recording activities. Included here are some cross-curricula lesson plans and activities for students to use their knowledge in science, math and social studies while acting as weather forecasters. Check out the web-sites listed in this section for information on building your own barometer and anemometer.

Lesson Plan

World War I and Our Community

Grade Level: 9-12 Content Area: Social Studies
Learn about World War I using primary sources from Maine Memory Network and the Library of Congress.

Lesson Plan

Bicentennial Lesson Plan

Teddy Roosevelt, Millie, and the Elegant Ride Companion Curriculum

Grade Level: 3-5, 6-8 Content Area: Social Studies
These lesson plans were developed by Maine Historical Society for the Seashore Trolley Museum as a companion curriculum for the historical fiction YA novel "Teddy Roosevelt, Millie, and the Elegant Ride" by Jean. M. Flahive (2019). The novel tells the story of Millie Thayer, a young girl who dreams of leaving the family farm, working in the city, and fighting for women's suffrage. Millie's life begins to change when a "flying carpet" shows up in the form of an electric trolley that cuts across her farm and when a fortune-teller predicts that Millie's path will cross that of someone famous. Suddenly, Millie finds herself caught up in events that shake the nation, Maine, and her family. The lesson plans in this companion curriculum explore a variety of topics including the history of the trolley use in early 20th century Maine, farm and rural life at the turn of the century, the story of Theodore Roosevelt and his relationship with Maine, WWI, and the flu pandemic of 1918-1920.

Lesson Plan

Longfellow Studies: Longfellow and Dickens - The Story of a Trans-Atlantic Friendship

Grade Level: 9-12 Content Area: English Language Arts, Social Studies
What if you don't teach American Studies but you want to connect to Henry Wadsworth Longfellow in meaningful ways? One important connection is Henry's friendship with Charles Dickens. There are many great resources about Dickens and if you teach his novels, you probably already know his biography and the chronology of his works. No listing for his association with Henry appears on most websites and few references will be found in texts. However, journals and diary entries and especially letters reveal a friendship that allowed their mutual respect to influence Henry's work.

Lesson Plan

Primary Sources: Using Source Documents in the Classroom

Grade Level: K-2, 3-5, 6-8, 9-12 Content Area: Social Studies
This lesson plan introduces teachers how to use a source document and the Maine Memory Network in classrooms. It can be used in any grade and will require one or more source documents, which can be found by searching the Maine Memory Network for the topic of your choice.

Lesson Plan

World War I and the U.S. Home Front

Grade Level: 9-12 Content Area: Social Studies
Learn about World War I using primary sources from Maine Memory Network and the Library of Congress.

Lesson Plan

World War I Sacrifice and Protest

Grade Level: 9-12 Content Area: Social Studies
Learn about World War I using primary sources from Maine Memory Network and the Library of Congress.

Lesson Plan

Immigration: Challenges and Opportunities in Maine

Grade Level: 9-12 Content Area: Social Studies
Learn about immigration in the United States using primary sources from Maine Memory Network and the Library of Congress.