Lesson Plan

The Cherokee People Lesson Plan - Elementary

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Grade Level:
Upper Elementary: Third Grade through Fifth Grade
Literacy and Language Arts,Social Studies
Lesson Duration:
90 Minutes
Common Core Standards:
3.RI.1, 3.RI.2, 3.RI.3, 3.RI.4, 3.RI.5, 3.RI.7, 4.RI.1, 4.RI.2, 4.RI.3, 4.RI.4, 4.RI.6, 5.RI.1, 5.RI.2, 5.RI.3, 5.RI.4, 5.RI.7
State Standards:
Georgia Performance Standard(s)
Thinking Skills:
Remembering: Recalling or recognizing information ideas, and principles. 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. Creating: Bring together parts (elements, compounds) of knowledge to form a whole and build relationships for NEW situations.


Essential Questions:
How does culture define a group of people?
What defines sovereignty over an area?

Analyze traditional stories of the Cherokee People
Describe aspects of Cherokee life, including Sequoyah/Cherokee Syllabary and common Cherokee settlements/farms.


In this lesson, elementary students will gain an understanding of cultural elements of the Cherokee people through the use of traditional stories, a primary document, and an activity that increases comprehension of the trade and barter system commonly used by early settlers.


See lesson plan for detailed instructions on how to conduct readings and activites. There are links to primary and secondary sources readings, images, and videos. TEACHERS, PLEASE NOTE: All of the activities, resources, and primary source documents are designed to provide teachers with materials that can be easily differentiated based on classroom needs. Pick and choose what works for you.


Download Activity: Cherokee Syllabary

Download Activity Trade and Barter

Download Reading Sequoyah and the Cherokee Syllabary

Download Reading The Legend of Cherokee Rose

Download Reading The Legend of the Corn Bread

Download Reading General Cultural Information

Lesson Hook/Preview

Message on the Desk

Yi si ni, today we are going to learn about the Tsa la gi’ and a man known as Si quo ya.”

Have students brainstorm/anticipate what they might be learning with this lesson.


  1. Basis “Fast Fact” Reading –Life in a Cherokee settlement and Activity
  2. Teacher Reader: Cultural Myths, The Legend of the Cherokee Rose, The Legend of the Corn Bread
  3. Sequoyah Reading and Syllabary translation
  4. Trade and Barter






Assessment Materials

Exit Ticket

Ticket Out the Door

Download Assessment

Additional Resources

The Cherokee Indians by Bill Lund (1997; Capstone Press)

Teaching with Historic Places Trail of Tears Lesson Plan

www.Cherokee.org (official website of the Cherokee Nation)

Contact Information

Email us about this lesson plan

Last updated: July 24, 2015