Lesson Plan

Influence of War
Post-Activity 2:
Influence of War on Copper Industry

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Grade Level:
Upper Elementary: Third Grade through Fifth Grade
Social Studies
Lesson Duration:
30 Minutes
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.


Students will be able to demonstrate the rise and fall of copper production and how it often coincides with times of conflict in the later years of mining.


Copper was used to create alloys of bronze and brass. These alloys, in turn, were manufactured into different products. As conflicts arose, the demand for weaponry and uniforms that used bronze and brass increased, therefore increasing the demand of copper. This influenced the success of copper mining.



Materials Needed

  • Copy paper or plain white paper
  • Colored pencils or markers
  • List of years that mining was profitable (found on park website or by using the timeline display at the Calumet Visitor Center)

Lesson Hook/Preview

Students will copy the timeline and ates of conflict or wars onto their own papers.


1. Students will copy the timeline and dates of conflict or wars onto their own papers. They do not need to write the descriptions of each war. They will also mark the time period of the copper mining era on the timeline.

2. Students should circle what wars demanded the use of copper or an alloy on their timeline.

3. Using timelines from Keweenaw NHP website or from notes taken during the visit to the Calumet Visitor Center, list off years copper mining was profitable or successful. The students will mark these years with a dot. Each time a year coincides with a conflict the students circled, they should put a star.

4. Discuss the timeline with the students. Even though copper mining was on the decline in the later years, what caused some mines to reopen? Did the success last long? Why or why not? Was there any war that occurred before mining in Upper Michigan? Where do you think the copper came from?



Additional Resources





Copper Mining Timeline:





Related Lessons or Education Materials

This post-activity is one of three that can be completed for fourth grade about the influence of war in the Keweenaw before a field trip visit to the Calumet Visitor Center.  There is also an assortment of related pre-visit activities that can be completed as well.

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Last updated: January 14, 2017