ALEX Lesson Plan


A Divided Nation

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  This lesson provided by:  
Author:Tracy Finke
Organization:Holy Spirit Regional School
  General Lesson Information  
Lesson Plan ID: 7393


A Divided Nation


Students will explore the sectional differences between the North and the South that ultimately led to the southern secession. Students will learn what is meant by secession and which states seceded, the country they formed, its capital, and whom they elected president. Students will create a PowerPoint Presentation, a brochure, and possibly a newsletter using computer software presenting information they have learned.

 Associated Standards and Objectives 
Content Standard(s):
TC2 (3-5)
2. Use various technology applications, including word processing and multimedia software.
  • Using navigational features commonly found in technology applications
  • Identifying digital file types
  • TC2 (3-5)
    6. Describe social and ethical behaviors related to technology use.
    Examples: social—developing positive attitudes for using technology collaboratively
    ethical—citing sources of text and digital content, avoiding plagiarism, avoiding manipulation of others' work without permission
  • Describing the global nature of the Internet
  • Following local acceptable-use policies regarding technology
  • Identifying intrusive applications, including worms, viruses, spyware, and pop-up advertisements
  • TC2 (3-5)
    8. Collect information from a variety of digital sources.
    Examples: online libraries, multimedia dictionaries
  • Using technology tools to organize information
  • Demonstrating efficient Internet search strategies
  • Example: keyword search
  • Evaluating electronic resources for reliability based on publication date, bias, accuracy, and source credibility
  • TC2 (3-5)
    10. Use digital environments to collaborate and communicate.
    Examples: publishing online journals, sharing presentations, contributing to online discussions, communicating with experts
  • Producing digital works collaboratively
  • Examples: developing shared writing projects and group multimedia projects
    SS2010 (4) Alabama Studies
    7. Explain reasons for Alabama's secession from the Union, including sectionalism, slavery, states' rights, and economic disagreements.
  • Identifying Alabama's role in the organization of the Confederacy, including hosting the secession convention and the inauguration ceremony for leaders
  • Recognizing Montgomery as the first capital of the Confederacy
  • Interpreting the Articles of the Confederation and the Gettysburg Address
  • SS2010 (4) Alabama Studies
    8. Explain Alabama's economic and military role during the Civil War.
    Examples: economic—production of iron products, munitions, textiles, and ships
    military—provision of military supplies through the Port of Mobile, provision of an armament center at Selma
  • Recognizing military leaders from Alabama during the Civil War
  • Comparing roles of women on the home front and the battlefront during and after the Civil War
  • Explaining economic conditions as a result of the Civil War, including the collapse of the economic structure, destruction of the transportation infrastructure, and high casualty rates
  • SS2010 (5) United States Studies: Beginnings to the Industrial Revolution
    11. Identify causes of the Civil War, including states' rights and the issue of slavery.
  • Describing the importance of the Missouri Compromise, Nat Turner's insurrection, the Compromise of 1850, the Dred Scott decision, John Brown's rebellion, and the election of 1860
  • Recognizing key Northern and Southern personalities, including Abraham Lincoln, Jefferson Davis, Ulysses S. Grant, Robert E. Lee, Thomas Jonathan "Stonewall" Jackson, William Tecumseh Sherman, and Joseph Wheeler (Alabama)
  • Describing social, economic, and political conditions that affected citizens during the Civil War
  • Identifying Alabama's role in the Civil War (Alabama)
  • Examples: Montgomery as the first capital of the Confederacy, Winston County's opposition to Alabama's secession (Alabama)
  • Locating on a map sites important to the Civil War
  • Examples: Mason-Dixon Line, Fort Sumter, Appomattox, Gettysburg, Confederate states, Union states (Alabama)
  • Explaining events that led to the conclusion of the Civil War
  • Local/National Standards:


    Primary Learning Objective(s):

    Students will compare and contrast the sectional differences between the North and the South.
    Students will explain how geographical regions can determine how people live and work.
    Students will conclude why sectional differences between the North and South caused conflict between them.
    Students will explain why southern states seceded.
    Students will describe the setup of the new Confederate government, its two capitals, and its president.
    Students will explain causes of the Civil War.
    Students will describe the events of Colonel Straight's raid and how he was stopped by General Nathan Bedford Forrest with the aid of Emma Samson.
    Students will describe the naval blockade and the fall of Mobile.

    Additional Learning Objective(s):

     Preparation Information 

    Total Duration:

    Greater than 120 Minutes

    Materials and Resources:


    Technology Resources Needed:

    Computers with Internet access, desktop publishing software, printer


    The teacher must teach all learning objectives prior to assigning the PowerPoint presentation, brochure, and/or newsletter.

    1.)Begin the lesson by allowing students to share what they know about the Civil War. Make a list on the board of students' responses. Tell students they will visit this list at the end of the lesson to determine what statements were true and what statements were false.

    2.)Explain to the class that they are going on an Internet Hunt for facts about the Civil War. Give each student a copy of the questions from the website below. Then allow them to explore the other websites to locate the answers for the sheet.
    After the class finishes the sheet, have them locate information to complete the Civil War presentation template. Allow students to work in groups to complete the presentations.
    (Civil War Hunt)
    This site contains a worksheet that will help students learn many facts about the Civil War.

    (The Civil War for Fifith Graders)
    This site contains many facts about the Civil War.

    (The Civil War for Kids)
    This site is kid friendly and has many informational links to help students understand the Civil War.

    (The Civil War in Alabama)
    This site describes the role of Alabama during the Civil War.

    (Alabama Civil War Map of Battles)
    This site contains a map of all of Alabama's battles during the Civil War.

    7.)After students have completed their Internet Hunt, show them the presentation about the Civil War (see attached).

    8.)Once students have viewed the teacher's presentation, allow them time to make any corrections to their presentations. Then have students present their findings to the class.

    **Some files will display in a new window. Others will prompt you to download.

    Assessment Strategies

    The teacher will assess student presentations for accuracy.





    Each area below is a direct link to general teaching strategies/classroom accommodations for students with identified learning and/or behavior problems such as: reading or math performance below grade level; test or classroom assignments/quizzes at a failing level; failure to complete assignments independently; difficulty with short-term memory, abstract concepts, staying on task, or following directions; poor peer interaction or temper tantrums, and other learning or behavior problems.

    Presentation of Material Environment
    Time Demands Materials
    Attention Using Groups and Peers
    Assisting the Reluctant Starter Dealing with Inappropriate Behavior
    Be sure to check the student's IEP for specific accommodations.