ALEX Lesson Plan Resources

ALEX Lesson Plans  
Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: Slavery: The Act of Buying, Selling, and Gifting Humans
Description: Through this lesson, students will explore primary sources related to the buying and selling of human beings for the purpose of slavery. Students will analyze receipts from stores and discuss what they demonstrate about modern society.  Students will then analyze the language and iconography used in bills of sale pertaining to the buying and selling of slaves in the 19th century. The students will write a paragraph to compare and contrast the items from both eras. This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History.


Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: We, the People...
Description: In 1819 the Constitutional Convention met in Huntsville, Alabama in order to write our state's constitution. In this lesson, students will learn what a preamble is, as well as, read both the United States' Preamble to the Constitution and the preamble to Alabama's Constitution. Students will examine similarities between both preambles and discuss possible reasons for such similarities. Fifth-grade teachers could also utilize this lesson to examine and compare both preambles and their purposes.  This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History.


Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: A Natural Attraction: The Natural Resources of Alabama During the Early Nineteenth Century
Description: This lesson looks at the natural resources that drew settlers to Alabama.  Students will explore the 1818 letter from Joseph Noble to his friend, Samuel B. Bidgood, describing the town at Tuscaloosa Falls.  Students will explain ideas within this historical text based on specific information presented in this primary source. Follow up lesson - Alabama: A Boundless Field of Speculation This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History.


Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: Alabama: A Boundless Field of Speculation
Description: This lesson looks at the natural resources that drew businesses to Alabama. Students will explore the adapted 1820 letter from Mason and Dexter in Cahaba, Alabama to Richards and Simmons in Cumberland, Rhode Island.  Students will explain ideas within this historical text based on specific information presented in this primary source. This lesson can be used as a stand alone or can follow A Natural Attraction: The Natural Resources of Alabama During the Early Nineteenth Century.  This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History.


Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: Alabama's Early Governors
Description: In this lesson, students will learn about the executive branch of government at the state level, especially related to the first governors of the state of Alabama. Their impact on the development of Alabama and Alabama's role in the United States will be discussed. Students will use research and note taking skills to gather information on an early governor. Then students will participate in jigsaw groups to share their information, discuss the importance of each governor, similarities, and impact. Finally, students will discuss the role of governor and how governors have an impact on the state and the impact these men had in Alabama and in other states.  This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History. 


Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: School is in Session!
Description: In this lesson, students will be able to describe cultural aspects of early nineteenth century townspeople by reading a newspaper article describing the opening of a new school. Students will also be able to discuss, infer, and write from a variety of perspectives when explaining the roles of various people mentioned in the article. This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History.


Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: You Don't Have Mail!
Description: This lesson will provide students with two primary documents, a drawing of a postal stagecoach and a newspaper article outlining the difficulties of mail delivery. Students will complete a graphic organizer to provide evidence that details a specific perspective described in the documents. Students will examine the cultural and economic aspects of the early nineteenth century and will refer to details and examples in a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences. Students will be able to explain how an author uses reasons and evidence to support particular points of view. This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History.


Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: Look Who's Coming to Dinner!
Description: Students will read from an Alabama newspaper about President James Monroe's surprise visit to Huntsville. The article discusses the purposes of the visit, the locals who welcomed and entertained the President, and his discussion of current (1819) events. This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History.


Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: Lafayette's Grand Tour
Description: Students will analyze a primary document and read a secondary source about the Marquis de Lafayette's Grand Tour of the United States in 1825. The Marquis and his entourage toured lower Alabama for a few days in April. Students will create an annotated timeline detailing his days and the events that occurred in Alabama as the country prepared to celebrate America's 50th birthday. The timeline will include dates and descriptions of the people, places, and events in informative summaries as well as appropriate illustrations. This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History.


Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: You are Invited!
Description: Students will analyze a primary document that details items purchased to celebrate the Marquis de Lafayette's tour of Alabama in April 1825. Students will create an invitation to the celebration, including the What, Where, When, Why, What to Bring, and R.S.V.P. Students will include details from the secondary source, as well as the primary document, to include on the invitation. The event will be explained utilizing the format of the invitation. This lesson is part of the SSC3 A+ College Ready training. This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History.


Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: Hernando de Soto in Alabama
Description: Students will use primary sources to gain information about Hernando de Soto, his route, and his interactions with Native Americans in Alabama. Students will read two articles in order to identify information about Hernando de Soto and his journey through Alabama. Students will also learn about the impact of European Exploration on the Native Americans who were in Alabama in the 1500s.  This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History.


Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: Alabama Fever!
Description: In this lesson, students will work in small groups to examine a letter describing the environment of Alabama and identify reasons which might have encouraged settlers to move to Alabama in the early nineteenth century.   Students will choose an interesting attraction of Alabama mentioned in the letter and design a postage stamp around that attraction.  This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History.