To celebrate American Indian Heritage and generate public appreciation for diverse cultures, Teaching with Historic Places has posted on the web the following lesson plans that consider important aspects of American Indian history. These lessons, based on sites listed in the National Register of Historic Places, are free and ready for immediate classroom use by students in history and social studies classes.
• The Carlisle Indian Industrial School: Assimilation with Education after the Indian Wars (163)
Discover a historic campus in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, where an American military officer's boarding school experiment brought American Indian children from across the continent at the turn of the century. (National Historic Landmark)
• Enduring Awatovi: Uncovering Hopi Life and Work on the Mesa (156)
Learn about traditional Hopi culture and farming at Awatovi, a historic pueblo where enduring Hopi traditions and American archeological research reveal much about this important place. (National Historic Landmark)
• The Battle of Honey Springs: The Civil War Comes to the Indian Territory (68)
Learn how the Civil War created fierce conflicts among American Indian nations who had been moved across the Mississippi River.
• The Battle of Horseshoe Bend: Collision of Cultures (54)
Consider the complex political and cultural differences that existed between European Americans and American Indians during the early 19th century and learn how these conflicting views ultimately affected the Creeks. (National Park)
• The Battle of Oriskany: "Blood Shed a Stream Running Down" (79)
Learn how New York's Mohawk Valley became the setting for a fierce Revolutionary War battle that pitted residents of the area, including the nations of the Iroquois Confederacy, against each other. (National Park/National Historic Landmark)
• Gran Quivira: A Blending of Cultures in a Pueblo Indian Village (66)
Examine the changing lifeways of the inhabitants of this village from the 7th century to the arrival of the Spanish in the early 17th century. (National Park)
• Knife River: Early Village Life on the Plains (1)
Discover the complex culture and trading economy of the Hidatsa and Mandan tribes in North Dakota during the 18th century, as seen by anthropologists and artists. (National Park/National Historic Landmark)
• The Lewis and Clark Expedition: Documenting the Uncharted Northwest (108)
Learn how the 1804-1806 expedition effectively opened the Northwest to the influence of the United States, established relations with numerous American Indian nations, and gathered useful scientific documentation about the West. (National Park/National Historic Landmark)
• San Antonio Missions: Spanish Influence in Texas (2)
Explore a group of 18th-century missions in modern San Antonio to learn about Spanish influence on native peoples and the patterns of Texas culture. (National Park/National Historic Landmark)
• Tonto National Monument: Saving a National Treasure (125)
Learn about one of the nation’s most important conservation laws--the Antiquities Act of 1906--and how its passage preserved important cultural sites such as Tonto National Monument, which preserves remnants of the Salado culture prior to European contact. (National Park)
• The Trail of Tears and the Forced Relocation of the Cherokee Nation (118)
Understand the factors that contributed both to the forced removal of the Cherokees off their homelands and to painful divisions within the tribe. (The Trail of Tears is a National Historic Trail./The Major Ridge House and John Ross House are National Historic Landmarks.)
• Discover the Trail of Tears: A Lightning Lesson From Teaching with Historic Places (Lightning Lesson #6)
Investigate American Indian history of the 1830s in a lesson plan about how the Cherokee struggled to preserve their society and culture. Note: This is a shorter, Common Core-aligned lesson plan based on an earlier publication. (The Trail of Tears is a National Historic Trail/The Major Ridge House and John Ross House are National Historic Landmarks.)
For more information about American Indian history, visit the National Register of Historic Places feature.
To learn more about TwHP's other lessons, visit the Lesson Plan Descriptions page.