Lesson Plan

Frontier Life

Frontier cabin at Abraham Lincoln Boyhood Home at Knob Creek
Frontier cabin at Abraham Lincoln Boyhood Home at Knob Creek
NPS

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Grade Level:
Kindergarten-Twelfth Grade
Subject:
Anthropology, Civil War, Economics, Geography, Government, History, Pioneer America, Sociology, Westward Expansion
Duration:
1 hour
Group Size:
Up to 24
Setting:
classroom
National/State Standards:
National Council for Social Studies (NCSS): The Eight Standards

U.S. History: 1, 1A, 2, 2D, 2E, 3A, 6
Geography: I, II, IV, V, VI
English: I, II, III

Overview

Born in a single room log cabin on his father's Sinking Spring Farm on Sunday, February 12, 1809, Abraham Lincoln's early years on the Kentucky frontier helped to shape his character and prepare the boy who would grow up to become the sixteenth President of the United States to lead the nation through the tragic and turbulent times of the Civil War. His legacy of liberty and equality remains relevant today and has impacted people around the world.


Objective(s)

Students will research what life was like for the frontier men and women giving significant importance to information pertaining to English settlers and the Lincoln family within and around Kentucky, Indiana, and Illinois.



Background

Abraham Lincoln was born on February 12, 1809, in a one room log cabin made of hewn logs and chinking of clay on his father's Sinking Spring Farm in what was then Hardin County (now LaRue County) on the frontier of Kentucky. A fireplace was built at one end of the cabin and was used for cooking, heating, and illumination of the cabin. A cabin was typically a structure that was sixteen feet by eighteen feet in dimensions where a pioneer family lived, cooked, ate, and slept.  A loft was often added for storage or sleeping space
for older children.  

Early furnishings for a frontier cabin were sparse and crudely made.  These furnishings
included a pole bed, small table with bench style or stools for sitting while eating meals,
cooking utensils, butter churn, spinning wheel, water bucket, and small wash tub.  Early
mattresses were filled with broomsage, leaves, cornhusks, or feathers.  Cooking utensils
were made of wrought iron while bowls, plates, and spoons were made of wood.  Gourds
were dried to be used as dippers or storage containers.  

Frontier women made their own thread and yarn from flax and produced most of the
family's clothing by hand. Animal skins were used to make trousers and moccasin shoes. Shoes were made from tanned hides.  Women also made lye soap from ashes from the
fireplace and candles from animal fat.  

The diet of frontier settlers centered around what was grown on the farm and in kitchen
gardens.  These items usually included corn, beans, squash, pumpkins, cabbage, and
onions.  This was supplemented by gathering nuts and berries during the summer months, and hunting wild game during game the winter.  Cornmeal was hand ground or taken
to local mills for grinding.  Sugar and coffee were two items that would be purchased
for family use.  

Farming was the main occupation on the Kentucky frontier and furnished many of the
items the family needed.  What the family could not manufacture or produce on the 
farm could be obtained by trading with neighbors or local merchants.  Most farms 
included a cow or two for milk and butter, hogs for meat, chickens for meat and eggs,
possibly a few sheep for wool, and horse or oxen for pulling a plow.  Farming 
implements were crude and typically made of wood or metal.

Survival of frontier families depended upon bountiful harvest, careful planning, 
cooperation, and participation of all family members.            



Materials

For this lesson you will need the Abraham Lincoln Birthplace and Boyhood Home Rubric sheet, journal entry example sheet, and journal entry worksheet.



Procedure

  • Start the lesson with appropriate lecture notes.
  • Instruct students on requirements for journal entry.
  • Hand out examples of journal entry.
  • Critique the journal entry.
  • Elaborate on why it is considered to be a good example.
  • Hand out selected reading material.
  • Instruct students to annotate reading material.
  • Students will create an outline of what information they will use in the journal entry as required by the blank journal entry worksheet.
  • Instruct students on how to document using APA Chicago style footnotes.
  • Allow students time to work on assignment.
  • Provide for peer grading opportunities.
  • Wrap up the lesson with a discussion on what information they obtained from the reading materials.
  • Summative assignment will be the completed journal entry.

Assessment

Abraham Lincoln Birthplace and Boyhood home Rubric

 

 

4

3

2

1

Required Elements

 

Includes at least one quotation from research material and includes at least six biographical details from ABLI life. All five Journal entries cover at least four different genres. Outline notes are included for all Journal entries.

Includes at least one quotation from research material and includes at least six biographical details from ABLI life. All five Journal entries cover at least three different genres. Outline notes are included for all or most artifacts.

Missing one to two required elements. May have no quotation from the novel or fewer than six artifacts. Outline notes are included for most artifacts.

Missing three or more required elements (i.e., the quotation from the novel and six biographical details. Outline notes are incomplete or not included for the artifacts.

Topic/Content

 

Journal entries clearly relate to the main topic. Covers topic completely and in depth. Encourages readers to know more.

 

Journal entries clearly relates to the main topic. Includes essential information and enough elaboration to give readers an understanding of the topic.

 

Journal entries clearly relates to the main topic. Includes some essential information with few facts or details.

 

Journal entries have little or nothing to do with the main topic. Includes little essential information and only one or two facts

 

Creativity

 

A lot of thought was put into making the Journal entries interesting and fun as shown by creative style and outline notes.

 

Some thought was put into making the Journal entries interesting and fun as shown by the creative style and outline notes.

 

Some thought was put into making the Journal entries interesting and fun, but some of the things made it harder to understand/enjoy.

 

Little thought was put into making the Journal entries interesting or fun.

 

Bibliographical Resources

 

Includes properly cited sources and complete information. Students will use Chicago style APA footnotes.

 

Documentation is included for all sources, but some bibliographical information is missing.

 

Documentation for some sources is missing and/or incomplete.

 

No documentation is included.

 

Mechanics

 

Grammar, spelling, punctuation, capitalization are correct. No errors in the text.

Journal must be 1 page in length. 12 Font Times new roman.

Spacing no more than 1.5 with footnotes included at the bottom of the page.

 

Includes 2-3 grammatical errors, misspellings, punctuation errors, etc.

 

Includes 3-4 grammatical errors, misspellings, punctuation errors, etc.

 

Includes more than 5 grammatical errors, misspellings, punctuation errors, etc.

 





Park Connections

www.nps.gov/libo

 

 



Additional Resources

http://www.nhumc.info/images/churchlife_country1809.pdf

 

 



Vocabulary

Cabin, frontier, furnishings, illumination, merchants, utensils, cooperation