Last updated: February 26, 2015
The Battles of Saratoga reading activity
- Grade Level:
- Fourth Grade-Seventh Grade
- Colonial History, Government, History, Military and Wartime History, Reading, Revolutionary War
- 20-25 minutes
- Group Size:
- Up to 24
- National/State Standards:
- NYS Content:
Gr. 4: Colonial/Rev Per., Rev War in NYS
Gr. 5: US Hist./Gov’t
Gr. 7: Un. 2, Sec. 3, Obj. 4; Un. 3, Sec. 4, Con A2, A3
Gr. 4: 2 A,B; 3 C,D,E
Gr. 5,7: Era 2 St. 1 B; 2 C; 3 B,C; Era 3 St. 1 C; 2 C
- Battle of Saratoga, Battles of Saratoga, Saratoga Battlefield, Revolutionary War, American Revolution, military history, history, social studies
OverviewThis activity gives a summary account of the Battles of Saratoga. Using the written passage provided, students will analyze the passage to answer several higher-level questions about the battles.
Students will be able to:
- read a passage and list basic details about the Battles of Saratoga
- analyze the written description of the battles and provide reasons for the American victory
- describe the international impacts of the battles
BackgroundIn the Battles of Saratoga, an army that thought it had no chance of losing--the British--eventually lost to an army that thought it had little chance of victory--the Americans. These battles in the middle of a area that seems fairly remote had a ripple effect that sent shock waves across the world, turning a civil uprising into a world war. Not only are the battles called the "turning point of the American Revolution," but have also been called "the most important battle of the last 1000 years."
MaterialsDownloadable PDF lesson materials:
Explain to students that early in the American Revolution, there had been very few American victories and our self-declared independence was at risk of ending almost before it began. America needed a strong military victory, especially if we wanted to be recognized by other countries as a real country of our own. Foreign recognition was critical, as we needed assistance if independence was to survive.
AssessmentDownloadable PDF answer key available .
Lesson worksheet summarizes the Battles of Saratoga into a few paragraphs, and could be used as a pre- or post-visit activity, or as a stand-alone classroom activity.
Schools can, in season, arrange for free, self-guiding tours of the battlefield, and for ranger-led education programs.
Additional ResourcesDownloadable PDF document:
VocabularyCONTINENTAL --regular soldiers in the American (Continental) army, enlisted for a period of a few years
MILITIA --more temporary soldiers only serving for a limited period of time, often just a few weeks; militia service was required annually by law for all men, between age 16 and an upper age varying between counties