About This Lesson
This lesson about Clara Barton is based on the National Register of Historic Places registration file, "Clara Barton National Historic Site" (with photographs), and other source material about Barton and
the American Red Cross. The lesson was written by Joan S. Pryor, former Park Ranger and Program Director at the Clara Barton National Historic Site. TwHP is sponsored, in part, by the Cultural Resources Training Initiative and Parks as Classrooms programs of the National Park Service. This lesson is one in a series that brings the important stories of historic places into the classrooms across the country.
Where it fits into the curriculum
Topics: The lesson could be used in teaching units on 19th- and early-20th-century American history, especially as related to social change during the period. It also could be used to teach about the history of women in the United States.
Time period: 1860-1900
Relevant United States History Standards for Grades 5-12
Relevant Curriculum Standards for Social Studies
Find your state's social studies and history standards for grades Pre-K-12
Objectives for students
1) To describe how Clara Barton founded the American Red Cross and the role it played in organizing help for those in need.
2) To explain how Bartonís Glen Echo home reflected her devotion to the American Red Cross.
3) To relate Bartonís dedication to expanding the role of women in public service.
4) To investigate the work of present-day Red Cross chapters in their area as well as other charitable organizations in the local community.
Materials for students
The materials listed below either can be used directly on the computer or can be printed out, photocopied and distributed to students. The map, photographs, and floor plan appear twice: in a low-resolution version with associated questions and alone in a larger, high-resolution version.
1) a map of Washington, D.C.;
2) two readings about Clara Barton's work;
3) a poem about nurses in the Civil War;
4) two photos of Red Cross facilities;
5) a floor plan of Clara Barton's home.
Visiting the Site
The Clara Barton National Historic Site in Glen Echo, Maryland, commemorates the life of Clara Barton, founder of the American Red Cross. It includes her home, from which she organized and directed Red Cross relief
efforts for victims of natural disasters and war. The park is located just outside of Washington, D.C., and can be reached by way of the Capital Beltway and the Clara Barton Parkway. It is open year-round except for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year's days. For more information, visit the park web pages.