Curriculum Materials

The Natchez Trace Parkway is a diverse blend of history, environment, and recreation. Its thousands of years of human history began with travelers who pre-dated the mound builders, and continues on through 20th century public works projects. The Trace contains diverse environmental features ranging from mixed hardwood forests on foothills, to prairie and swamps. The 444-mile corridor provides opportunities for a vast variety of outdoor recreational experiences. Our educational program reflects the diversity of the Trace and provides educational experiences that engage students and inspire learning.

We are currently updating our pages, so please be patient with our progress and check back as our lessons become searchable. Links to lesson plans are below and also at the bottom of the For Teachers page.

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Showing results 31-40 of 59

  • National Park Service Logo

    This lesson will teach students about how the Natchez Trace Parkway and the Natchez Trace Scenic trails relate to the National Park Service, through class discussion and review worksheet. This lesson will introduce students to the concept of the National Park Service the government unit behind the existence of the Natchez Trace Parkway and the associated National Scenic Trails. Students will participate in class discussion through an informal presentation and complete a related worksheet.

    Type:
    Lesson Plan
    Grade level:
    Ninth Grade-Twelfth Grade
    Subjects:
    Government, History, Physical Education
    Keywords:
    research, National Parks, natchez trace parkway, reporting, government, community engagement, communities, social responsibility, public service, resource protection, plants, animals, history, maps, regions, compass, legacy, society
  • Fire Safety Review (and Good Fires)

    Students will review fire safety, be introduced to the concept that not all fire is bad, and engage in a physical activity that integrates fitness and fire safety knowledge. A guest speaker from the Fire Management Division at the Natchez Trace Parkway could be requested. The activity involves teamwork, body fitness, and space awareness, as well as fire safety knowledge.

    Type:
    Lesson Plan
    Grade level:
    Kindergarten-Second Grade
    Subjects:
    Fire Safety, Health, Physical Education, Physical Fitness
    Keywords:
    fire safety, Physical Fitness, safety, game, physical education, Prescribed Fire, prescribed burning, Prescribed Burn, controlled burn
  • Natchez Trace Parkway

    Name It

    Yockanookany sign along the Natchez Trace

    This lesson engages students to determine important locations and creatively develop their own names for places around the school. 

    Type:
    Lesson Plan
    Grade level:
    Fourth Grade
    Subjects:
    Social Studies, Writing
    Keywords:
    Ethnic/Cultural Heritage, Cultural History, cultural influence, place name, geographic name, geographic names
  • Chinese Privet (Ligustrum sinense), a non-native invasive plant species

    On a National Scenic Trail, students will investigate how privet, a non-native plant species, out-competes and affects native plant species diversity. They will inventory the plants along the trail.

    Type:
    Lesson Plan
    Grade level:
    Ninth Grade-Twelfth Grade
    Subjects:
    Biology: Plants, Environment
    Keywords:
    invasive, non-native, diversity, Bio-diversity, population, community, competition, exotic plants, plants, botany, national scenic trail, plant diversity
  • Natchez Trace Parkway

    History of the Natchez Trace

    Slide of travelers on the Natchez Trace

    The teacher will show the students a map of the Natchez Trace Parkway and show the students where they live in relation to the Parkway. The teacher will read "How the Natchez Trace Came to Be" (downloadable)  to the students.  The teacher has the option for several activities. The students can take notes during the reading of the story, help to retell the story, write sentences, fll out a cloze activity, and/or draw a picture of the Natchez Trace Parkway.

    Type:
    Lesson Plan
    Grade level:
    Second Grade
    Subjects:
    Social Studies
    Keywords:
    human migration, early settlers, settlers, Old Trace, Natchez Trace, Old Southwest, Roads, Mississippi History, Alabama History, Tennessee History, boatmen, Kaintucks, natchez trace parkway
  • Preserving Our Heritage

    Students will investigate local treasures that are not protected. They will investigate how to help protect them and develop a management proposal.  This lesson specifically relates to areas related to the old Natchez Trace, however, the methods could be applied to any local landmark.

    Type:
    Lesson Plan
    Grade level:
    Ninth Grade-Twelfth Grade
    Subjects:
    Community, Government, Historic Preservation, History, Language Arts, Leadership, Social Studies
    Keywords:
    Conservation, Preservation, Paradigm shift, heritage, environmental education, environmental assessment, community service, service learning, historic preservation, environmental preservation, National Parks, national park service
  • Animal Populations Up and Down

    Animal populations have natural cycles. Those cycles are frequently influenced by human pressures. Students will see animal populations grow and decline, and learn more about predator prey adaptations that classify animals. This lesson introduces the basic population dynamic concepts with simplified fluctuations.

    Type:
    Lesson Plan
    Grade level:
    Fourth Grade-Eighth Grade
    Subjects:
    Agriculture, Biology: Animals, Ecology, Environment, Recreation Ecology, Wildlife Biology, Wildlife Management
    Keywords:
    environment, ecology, animal population, animal, ecosystem, population dynamics
  • Natchez Trace Parkway

    Spotted Salamanders (Second Grade)

    Spotted Salamander metamorphosis

    Discuss the life history of salamanders with students using photo from books, the internet or the drawings provided. The students will learn that spotted salamanders live in their neighborhoods (see range map) and along the Natchez Trace Parkway.  Option: Have the students do the Spotted Salamander Life Stages work sheet.

    Type:
    Lesson Plan
    Grade level:
    Second Grade
    Subjects:
    Biology: Animals, Science and Technology
    Keywords:
    salamander, metamorphosis, Amphibian, spotted salamander, adaptations, community service, natchez trace parkway, resource protection, animal protection, animal population, vernal pool, instinct
  • Tishomingo's mark on a Mississippi land deed

    This lesson was developed by the Chickasaw Nation Department of Culture and Humanities. Students whose ancestors had been removed to Oklahoma returned to their ancestral homelands in Mississippi to create educational resources for the Natchez Trace Parkway. This is one of those resources.

    Type:
    Curricula
    Grade level:
    Ninth Grade-Twelfth Grade
    Subjects:
    American Indian History and Culture, Anthropology, Civil Rights Movement, Pioneer America, Social Studies, Sociology, Westward Expansion
    National/State Standards:
    (1) Oklahoma History and Government Content Standard 2.3: 
    (2) Oklahoma History and Government Content Standard 2.4A:
    (3) U.S. History Content Standard 1.2A:
    (4) U.S. History Content Standard 1.2B:
    Keywords:
    Chickasaw, trail of tears, Native American, American Indian, human migration, Civil Rights, Indian Removal, Oklahoma history, Mississippi History
  • Tracing the Civil War

    Students will examine the sites and events near the Natchez Trace Parkway in northeastern Mississippi. In these lessons, we will focus on the Civil War sites found near the modern Natchez Trace Parkway in northeastern Mississippi: Okolona, Brice’s Crossroads, and Tupelo. Teachers can choose any of 5 classroom activities regarding these battles and the Civil War Railroad network. Teachers can also bring their classes on field trips for many battlefield and event sites. 

    Type:
    Lesson Plan
    Grade level:
    Sixth Grade-Eighth Grade
    Subjects:
    African American History and Culture, Civil War, History, Slavery, Social Studies
    Keywords:
    Civil War, USCT, Mississippi, railroad, united states colored troops, Nathan Bedford Forrest, Samuel Sturgis
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