Lesson Plan

Do Artifacts Tell Stories?

Toiletry Kit with soap, comb, toothbrush, mirror, tooth powder, foot powder

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Grade Level:
Upper Elementary: Third Grade through Fifth Grade
Subject:
Literacy and Language Arts,Social Studies
Lesson Duration:
60 Minutes
State Standards:
Social Studies Skills
4.21 Critical thinking:
A. Use artifacts to acquire information
B. Analyze information by . . . drawing inferences

4.22  Communication
C. Express ideas orally based on research
Thinking Skills:
Understanding: Understand the main idea of material heard, viewed, or read. Interpret or summarize the ideas in own words. Applying: Apply an abstract idea in a concrete situation to solve a problem or relate it to a prior experience. Evaluating: Make informed judgements about the value of ideas or materials. Use standards and criteria to support opinions and views.

Objective

How do the artifacts tell the stories of the soldiers and camp women who served in the Civil War?

In this lesson, students:
Compare and contrast what Civil War soldiers used during their free time and what you use today

Learn how artifacts tell us about the life of a Civil War soldier

Background

This lesson is a supplement to teaching students about the Civil War. For background information about the Civil War, please visit the National Park Service Civil War website.

Preparation

 

  1. Make student copies of the Camp Life poster. (Option: One/group and/or hang a big poster the classroom)
  2. Make student copies of the three Analyzing Artifacts worksheets. (Option: One/student or one/group)
  3. Draw a table on the board with three columns:
    1. You
    2. Soldiers Today
    3. Civil War Soldiers

Materials

Students use the Camp Life poster to determine which replica artifacts to analyze.

Download Camp Life Poster

Students use the Analyzing Artifacts worksheet to analyze replica artifacts.

Download Analyzing Artifacts Worksheet

Red box answer key

Download CL Answers Red

Blue box answer key

Download CL Answers Blue

Green box answer key

Download CL Answers Green

Lesson Hook/Preview

  1. Have a class discussion about the students’ free time. Write answers in the table. Suggested questions:
    1. What do you like to do when you have free time?
    2. What items do you use during your free time (e.g., iPad, Playstation, Nintendo)
  2. Have a class discussion about a soldier’s free time. Write answers in the table. Suggested questions:
    1. Do you think soldiers have a lot of free time? Why or why not?
    2. How do you think soldiers spend their free time?
    3. What items do soldiers use during their free time?
    4. Possible answers:
      1. Eat – Plate, Cup, Silverware
      2. Read – Books, Kindle
      3. Take a shower – Soap, Sponge
      4. Play games – iPad, Playstation, Nintendo
      5. Go shopping at the Exchange - Money
      6. Listen to or play music – iPad, Headphones, Instruments
  3. Compare/contrast what soldiers do today to pass time to what Civil War soldiers did to pass time.  Write answers in the table. Possible answers:
    1. Eat – Plate, Cup, Silverware
    2. Read – Books
    3. Take a shower – Soap
    4. Play games – Cards
    5. Go shopping at the Exchange - Money
    6. Listen to or play music – Jew’s Harp, Harmonica

Procedure

  1. Have a class discussion about artifacts.
  2. Divide students into groups of three.
  3. Give each group the Civil War Camp Life Poster and Analyzing Artifacts worksheet.
  4. Tell each group to have one student read the 1st column, another the 2nd, and another the 3rd. When they are done reading, discuss the items with your group, select the three your group thinks are the most interesting, and answer worksheet questions. (Option: Assign three items to each group.)
  5. Give students 15-20 minutes to complete the worksheet.
  6. Have each group present an item they selected.
  7. Have a class discussion about how the artifacts help us better understand the life of a Civil War soldier.

Vocabulary

Introductory Text

  1. Enlist: to join the military voluntarily
  2. Private: an enlisted person of the lowest ranks in the military
  3. Regiment : a military unit
  4. Fortify: to strengthen by military defense
  5. Ditching: digging a ditch
  6. Picket: a soldier or a group of soldiers assigned to stand guard
  7. Vedette: a guard outside a military fort or camp that spies on the enemy
  8. Ramrod: a rod for ramming a bullet and gunpowder down the barrel of a gun
  9. Cartridge: a tube containing a bullet and gunpowder
  10. Reveille: a bugle call around sunrise for soldiers to get up
  11. Recruit: (n) a newly enlisted or drafted member of the military
  12. Circumvent: to go around

Blue Boxes

  1. Versatile: able to do many different kinds of things
  2. Haversack: a bag similar to a knapsack but worn over one shoulder
  3. Literate: able to read and write
  4. Prospect: something that is waited for or expected
  5. Knapsack: a large carrying case carried like a backpack

Red Boxes

  1. Campaign: a series of military operations in a particular area or for a particular purpose as part of a war
  2. Ration: a food allowance for one day
  3. Quoits: a ring of iron or rope thrown over a peg in a game similar to horseshoes
  4. Push pin: a game played by rolling pins across a board
  5. Stipulate: to specify as a condition or requirement
  6. Disburse: to pay out

Green Boxes

  1. Promissory note: containing a promise to pay
  2. Ratify: to give legal or official approval
  3. Wane: to grow gradually smaller or less
  4. Plummeted: to fall straight down
  5. Mend clothing: to fix a hole or tear with new material
  6. Fisticuffs: a fight with fists
  7. Sutler: a person who followed an army to sell items to the soldiers
  8. Perimeter: the boundary of a shape or area

Voices of the Civil War

  1. Infantry : a branch of an army made up of soldiers who fight on foot
  2. Desert: to quit one's post without permission with the intention of remaining away permanently
  3. Vermin: small common harmful or objectionable animals (such as fleas or mice) that are difficult to get rid of
  4. Ration: a food allowance for one day
  5. Morsel: a small piece of food
  6. Straggle: to wander from a course or way
  7. Succor: to aid someone in need or distress

Assessment Materials

Assessment

Assess the student's performance by:

Group participation
Worksheet Answer Keys

Title: Analyzing Artifacts Row 1 Answer Sheet

Summary: Use the Artifacts Row 1 Answer Sheet to assess student understanding.
 

Title: Analyzing Artifacts Row 2 Answer Sheet

Summary: Use the Artifacts Row 2 Answer Sheet to assess student understanding.

Title: Analyzing Artifacts Row 3 Answer Sheet

Summary: Use the Artifacts Row 3 Answer Sheet to assess student understanding.

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