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Making Sense of Lincoln

8 th grade

American History

One Period Per Lesson

25 students

Lesson #1: When Lincoln wasn't popular

Rationale:

Students will be able to evaluate opinions about Lincoln around the time of his election through viewing commentary about Lincoln. Students will be able to describe his readiness to be President by supporting their opinion with detailed information. In addition, students will describe the impact of historical significance of individuals within those decisions.

Standards:

National Center for History:

US History, Era 5, Standard 1, The Causes of the Civil War, Standard 1A: The Student understands how the North and South differed and how politics and ideologies led to the Civil War

Historical Thinking Standard 2, Historical Thinking: The student comprehends a variety of historical sources

Materials:

PowerPoint, Political Cartoons and speeches, political cartoon sheets for students, ability to project cartoons onto screen for whole class viewing

Resources: Political Cartoons of the Whispering Gallery (available through the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum)

Background Information:

Teachers want to preview the political cartoons they are using to make certain they are aware of the specific events surrounding the drawing of the cartoon.

Students should be introduced to the concept of political cartoons and their uses. Students should also be familiar with events leading up to Lincoln's election in 1860 including information about the election generally.

Preparation of Learning Environment: Students will begin class in whole group discussion and then work in small groups analyzing political cartoons. Students should be in groups of about 4 students.

Lesson Focus: This series of lessons will build on prior knowledge and background information to engage students. Students will be asked to discuss what they already have learned or know about Lincoln, and how and if their views change throughout the lessons. Students will artistically represent their views by drawing political cartoons.

Instructional Plan and Procedure:

1) Students answer the opener in their journals. Opener for the day is: Was Abraham Lincoln the right man to be president in 1860? Why?

2) Select student to lead opener-student goes over opener by soliciting responses from others. (In my classroom, students toss an inflatable globe to the students who are answering the question.)

3) What do we know about Lincoln and how he became president? Discuss and see what students remember-close race-division among democrats, southern states threaten to secede-he was Honest Abe, etc.

4) What qualities do you look for in a president? Should the President be able to do what is believed to be right by the public or should the president be able to make decisions the public disagrees with? Do you think Lincoln would have been a popular president at the time of his election? Why or why not?

5) After having students respond and discuss the above questions, show students a political cartoon involving Lincoln. Use the cartoon, entitled Dividing the National Map. This cartoon is ideal because it is a commentary on the election and not specifically on Lincoln. This allows you to discuss the elements of political cartoons, such as point of view and style of caricature. A teacher might ask how the cartoon differs from a photograph (portrait) of a person-this may help to facilitate conversation.

6) After analyzing this political cartoon, divide the students into groups and have each group analyze a cartoon. After giving them time, have them share their cartoons with the class.

7) End with class discussion about all cartoons: How was Lincoln perceived in his own time? What did people think of him? Was he as popular then as he is today? Encourage students to back up answers with details from either prior knowledge or the cartoons presented in class.

8) Explain that students will be drawing their own cartoon of Lincoln, based on what they learned in class today. The sketches need to show what others thought of Lincoln at the time and whether he was fit to be president in 1860.

Modification: Teacher might make groups to accommodate learning styles and pair groups with specific cartoons. Teacher might alter expectations of political cartoons to be more literal interpretations and less cartoons for students who struggle with creation of cartoons themselves.

Extension Activities: Teachers can have students create political cartoons in response to daily reading assignments or class discuss throughout the Civil War unit. Students could keep a sketchbook of political cartoon drafts and then choose a certain number to create final drafts of as an end project.

Closure: After each group presents its political cartoon, the teacher will lead a discussion summarizing how Lincoln was viewed at the time of his election. The teacher might also tell students that tomorrow we will look at Lincoln through his own words. Assignment: sketch of political cartoon about Lincoln to show what they have learned each day.

Notes: A political cartoon sheet is at the end of all lessons.

Lesson #2: Using Lincoln in Defense of Lincoln

Rationale: Students will be able to build on yesterday's lesson by evaluating Lincoln's own stance on an issue. Students will look beyond what others thought about Lincoln and consider their own opinion based on Lincoln's words and speeches.

Standards:

National Center for History:

US History, Era 5, Standard 1, The Causes of the Civil War, Standard 1A: The Student understands how the North and South differed and how politics and ideologies led to the Civil War

Historical Thinking Standard 2, Historical Thinking: The student comprehends a variety of historical sources

Materials: quotations from Lincoln's speeches

Resources: Holzer, Harold. The Lincoln-Douglas Debates: The First Complete, Unexpurgated Text. Fordham University Press: New York, 2004.

Background Information: Students should be introduced to the concept of political cartoons and their uses. Students should also be familiar with events leading up to Lincoln's election in 1860 including information about the election generally (i.e. who was running, tight race)

Preparation of Learning Environment:

Group desks for students and keep students in the same groups as day one!

Instructional Plan and Procedure:

  1. Students answer the opener for the day. Today's opener is: Why were people so opposed to Lincoln?
  2. After answering the opener, give students the following directions: You will receive several pieces of speeches made by Lincoln about race and slavery. Your job is to write a summary underneath the speeches and to try to put them in the time order you think they were given in.
  3. Give the students the speech parts (numbered and with space to write the summaries) and let them work in groups.
  4. Ask groups to share speech summaries they write and then put them in order on the board. As you go over the selections talk about Lincoln view on slavery. Remind students that historians disagree on Lincoln's statements about race; they should discuss whether they think his comments are politically motivated or show a progression in thought by Lincoln.
  5. Try to build consensus among the class-what do they think Lincoln really thought about race? Was Lincoln progressive for his time? Do they think he was a true abolitionist? Did he become one as time went on?

Modification: Students could have paraphrased speeches or only one-two sentence passages.

Extension Activities: Students could also be asked to write a speech they might have given on the issue of slavery in the eighteenth century. How would they have handled Lincoln's job? What would they have emphasized in their speech?

Closure:

Have students summarize Lincoln's perspective on slavery and equality. What do they know for certain? What are they pretty sure he meant?

Assignment: Students will create a second political cartoon to show their opinion of Lincoln after this second approach to studying him.

Notes:

**This next lesson does not necessarily directly follow the other too**

Lesson #3:

Rationale:

Students will be able to distinguish between Lincoln's actions according to its purpose. Students will compare the Emancipation Proclamation to the Gettysburg Address. Students will look at each document for how Lincoln differentiates between occasions.

Standards:

National Center for History:

US History, Era 5, Standard Historical Thinking Standard 2, Historical Thinking: The student comprehends a variety of historical sources

Materials: copies of the Gettysburg Address and the Emancipation Proclamation

Resources: most textbooks have copies of these two documents.

Background Information: Students will need to know about the significance of the battle of Antietam. As the battle during the Civil War with the highest casualties, Antietam might have been significant for that alone, but the Union victory at Antietam gave Lincoln an opportunity he had been waiting for. With the win, he issued the Emancipation Proclamation. While Gettysburg is often considered the turning point of the Civil War, Antietam and the Emancipation Proclamation changed the purpose of the war.

Preparation of Learning Environment: Teacher may want to group student desks together to share objects or pictures.

Lesson Focus: This lesson focuses on Lincoln's political shrewdness and understanding. Comparing Lincoln's use of legal language in the Emancipation Proclamation with his eloquence in the Gettysburg Address reveal a practical intelligence to what Lincoln tried to accomplish during his time as President.

Instructional Plan and Procedure:

  1. Students will answer the opening question for the day: Do you use the same tone and type of language for everyone you speak to? Solicit answer from a variety of students. I would think (maybe with prompting) students would say they address their friends differently than teachers or grandparents, etc.
  2. Explain that some have argued that the real turning point of the war was Antietam. Why would some say that? Lincoln used this opportunity and his background as a lawyer to issue the Emancipation Proclamation. We're going to look at both the Emancipation Proclamation and the Gettysburg Address today to see how he used these opportunities.
  3. Hand out copies of the Gettysburg Address and the Emancipation Proclamation.
  4. Have students read sentences of the documents back and forth, one document at a time.
  5. Discuss with students the following questions: 1. What did you notice while reading these documents (i.e. sentence length, style)?; 2. Which is easier to read and understand? Why? What is the purpose of each? How is this obvious in how each was written?
  6. Dissect the Emancipation Proclamation. What does it say? What power did Lincoln have? Is this a Constitutional violation?
  7. Ask students, "How does this compare to the Gettysburg Address?"
  8. Now that we've looked at the differences between them let's sum up our discussion today by creating a venn diagram of these two speeches, so we can clearly see similarities and differences in their content.

Modification: For students who struggle through the speech and/or proclamation, teachers could create a glossary of terms to go with the passage.

Extension Activities:

Have students write their own versions of each document in modern language keeping in mind Lincoln's purpose with each.

Closure: Students will create a venn diagram on the board to show similarities and difference between the documents.

Notes:

Assessment: the Venn diagram should show understanding.

Attachments: below

  1. Political cartoon handout
  2. Political cartoon rubric
  3. Quotations for Abraham Lincoln

Name: Topic:

Period: Date:

Caption: (If needed)

Caption: (If needed)





Student Name_____________________

Period____

Political Cartoon number 1:

Category

4

3

2

1

Subject Matter

Student clearly shows understanding of political concept

Student mostly shows understanding of political concept

Student shows some understanding of political concept

Student shows no understanding of political concept

Way topic is conveyed

Student's point of view is clearly conveyed

Student's point of view is mostly well conveyed.

Student's point of view is marginally conveyed.

Student's point of view is poorly conveyed

Visual presentation of political cartoon

Text and graphics are clearly legible.

Text and graphics are mostly legible

Text and graphics are somewhat legible

Text and graphics are not legible

Creativity

Student show creative expression of topic

Student mostly shows creative expression of topic

Student's expression is somewhat creative

Student's expression is not creative

Guidelines

Student meets all guidelines

Student meets most guidelines

Students somewhat meets guidelines

Student does not meet guidelines

Comments:


Lincoln speeches for lesson 2

"What I would most desire would be the separation of the white and black races."

- Spoken at Springfield, Illinois on July 17th, 1858; from ABRAHAM LINCOLN: COMPLETE WORKS, 1894, Vol. 1, page 273

"See our present condition---the country engaged in war! Our White men cutting one another's throats! And then consider what we know to be the truth. But for your race among us there could not be war, although many men engaged on either side do not care for you one way or another.

"Why should the people of your race be colonized, and where? Why should they leave this country? This is, perhaps, the first question for proper consideration. You and we are different races. We have between us a broader difference than exists between almost any other two races. Whether it is right or wrong I need not discuss, but this physical difference is a great disadvantage to us both, as I think your race suffer very greatly, many of them by living among us, while ours suffer from your presence. In a word, we suffer on each side. If this be admitted, it affords a reason at least why we should be separated. It is better for both, therefore, to be separated."

- Spoken at the White House to a group of black community leaders, August 14th, 1862, from COLLECTED WORKS OF ABRAHAM LINCOLN, Vol 5, page 371

"I will say, then, that I AM NOT NOR HAVE EVER BEEN in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the black and white races---that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of making voters

or jurors of negroes, nor of qualifying them to hold office, nor to intermarry with White people; and I will say in addition to this that there is a physical difference between the White and black races which will ever FORBID the two races living together on terms of social and political equality. And inasmuch as they cannot so live, while they do remain together, there must be the position of superior and inferior, and I, as much as any other man, am in favor of having the superior position assigned to the White race."

- 4th Lincoln-Douglas debate, September 18th, 1858; COLLECTED WORKS Vol. 3, pp. 145-146

This is a world of compensations; and he who would be no slave, must consent to have no slave. Those who deny freedom to others, deserve it not for themselves; and, under a just God, can not long retain it.

-- To Henry L. Pierce

April 6, 1859

It is also unsatisfactory to some that the elective franchise is not given to the colored man. I would myself prefer that it were now conferred on the very intelligent, and on those who serve our cause as soldiers.

-- Last Public Address

April 11, 1865

Caption: (If needed)



Title of Lesson: The Emancipation Proclamation: Did It Do Anything?

Subject/Course: American History

Grades: 9-12

State standards

16.A.4a Analyze and report historical events to determine cause-and-effect relationships.

16.A.5a Analyze historical and contemporary developments using methods of historical inquiry (pose questions, collect and analyze data, make and support inferences with evidence, report findings).

16.A.4b Compare competing historical inter­pre­tations of an event.

16.B.4 (US) Identify political ideas that have dominated United States historical eras (e.g., Federalist, Jacksonian, Progressivist, New Deal, New Conservative).

16.D.4a (US) Describe the immediate and long-range social impacts of slavery.

16.D.4b (US) Describe unintended social consequences of political events in United States history (e.g., Civil War/emancipation, National Defense Highway Act/decline of inner cities, Vietnam War/anti-government activity).

Bell Ringer: Many believe that the Emancipation Proclamation freed the slaves, thus making Abraham Lincoln "The Great Emancipator." Is this argument historically accurate?

Enduring Understandings

1. The Emancipation Proclamation was a legal document that was carefully crafted by Abraham Lincoln.

2. Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation to give a moral purpose for the North and establish war aims for the Union Army.

3. The Emancipation Proclamation freed the slaves only in states of rebellion.

4. Abraham Lincoln believed that he could not free the slaves in the Border States, otherwise risking the loss of the Border States to the Confederacy and jeopardizing the war.

5. Although the Emancipation Proclamation didn't have an immediate impact on slavery, it still was a "game-changer" in that for the first time, it made the Civil War about slavery.

6. The timing of the Emancipation Proclamation demonstrates Lincoln's skills as a brilliant politician.

Essential Questions

1. Why did Abraham Lincoln issue the Emancipation Proclamation?

2. What was the short-term and long-term impact of the Emancipation Proclamation?

3. What was significant about the timing of the Emancipation Proclamation?

4. Why didn't Lincoln free all of the slaves in the Border States?

5. What does the Emancipation Proclamation tell us now about Lincoln's goals for the war? How have his goals changed?

6. What did the Emancipation Proclamation really accomplish?

Materials: Copy of the Emancipation Proclamation (see link below), Writing Materials

Time: 2 days

Activities and Assessment: "Debating the Emancipation Proclamation!"

Part 1: Activity: Prep for the Debate (1 class period)

1. Students will read the Emancipation Proclamation in pairs.

2. After reading the document in pairs, students will answer the "essential questions" that are listed above.

3. As students finish up their work, we will come together as a class and share responses in order to foster a class discussion.

4. Students will be assigned to one of the following for tomorrow's debate:

a. Abraham Lincoln

b. Radical Republican

c. Moderate Republican

d. White Southerner

e. African American Slave

f. Free African American

5. Homework: (due tomorrow)

a. Students will analyze and research the views of their assigned person/party/group.

i. (Students will be responsible for representing the view points during the debate.)

b. Students should craft 5 questions to ask during the debate.

c. Students should craft 5 questions that they believe will be asked of them during the debate and write responses to their own questions.

i. All research/work can be used during the debate tomorrow!

Part 2: Assessment: The Debate (1 class period)

1. Students will break into their groups and prepare for the debate. At this time, group members can compare notes and organize the arguments for the debate.

2. Each person must participate at least once during the debate.

a. Participation=asking a question, responding to the question, giving opening/closing statement

3. Each group must give an opening and closing statement.

4. The main responsibility for the students will be to represent their person/party/group in a historically accurate manner.

Rubric

__________/10 Opening Statement

__________/10 Reference to at least one primary source

__________/10 Historically Accurate Arguments

__________/10 Participation (Individual grade)

__________/10 Closing Statement

Total

__________/50

**Notes

1) All components of the rubric are a group grade, with the exception of the participation component.

2) The work completed for the debate preparation will be turned in after the debate for a homework grade.


The Emancipation Proclamation

Resource: The National Archives

Link: http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/featured_documents/emancipation_proclamation/transcript.html

Whereas on the 22nd day of September, A.D. 1862, a proclamation was issued by the President of the United States, containing, among other things, the following, to wit:

"That on the 1st day of January, A.D. 1863, all persons held as slaves within any State or designated part of a State the people whereof shall then be in rebellion against the United States shall be then, thenceforward, and forever free; and the executive government of the United States, including the military and naval authority thereof, will recognize and maintain the freedom of such persons and will do no act or acts to repress such persons, or any of them, in any efforts they may make for their actual freedom.

"That the executive will on the 1st day of January aforesaid, by proclamation, designate the States and parts of States, if any, in which the people thereof, respectively, shall then be in rebellion against the United States; and the fact that any State or the people thereof shall on that day be in good faith represented in the Congress of the United States by members chosen thereto at elections wherein a majority of the qualified voters of such States shall have participated shall, in the absence of strong countervailing testimony, be deemed conclusive evidence that such State and the people thereof are not then in rebellion against the United States."

Now, therefore, I, Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States, by virtue of the power in me vested as Commander-In-Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States in time of actual armed rebellion against the authority and government of the United States, and as a fit and necessary war measure for supressing said rebellion, do, on this 1st day of January, A.D. 1863, and in accordance with my purpose so to do, publicly proclaimed for the full period of one hundred days from the first day above mentioned, order and designate as the States and parts of States wherein the people thereof, respectively, are this day in rebellion against the United States the following, to wit:

Arkansas, Texas, Louisiana (except the parishes of St. Bernard, Palquemines, Jefferson, St. John, St. Charles, St. James, Ascension, Assumption, Terrebone, Lafourche, St. Mary, St. Martin, and Orleans, including the city of New Orleans), Mississippi, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, and Virginia (except the forty-eight counties designated as West Virginia, and also the counties of Berkeley, Accomac, Morthhampton, Elizabeth City, York, Princess Anne, and Norfolk, including the cities of Norfolk and Portsmouth), and which excepted parts are for the present left precisely as if this proclamation were not issued.

And by virtue of the power and for the purpose aforesaid, I do order and declare that all persons held as slaves within said designated States and parts of States are, and henceforward shall be, free; and that the Executive Government of the United States, including the military and naval authorities thereof, will recognize and maintain the freedom of said persons.

And I hereby enjoin upon the people so declared to be free to abstain from all violence, unless in necessary self-defence; and I recommend to them that, in all case when allowed, they labor faithfully for reasonable wages.

And I further declare and make known that such persons of suitable condition will be received into the armed service of the United States to garrison forts, positions, stations, and other places, and to man vessels of all sorts in said service.

And upon this act, sincerely believed to be an act of justice, warranted by the Constitution upon military necessity, I invoke the considerate judgment of mankind and the gracious favor of Almighty God.

Title: The Gettysburg Address: What Is Its Enduring Legacy?

Subject/Course: American History

Topic: Abraham Lincoln and The Civil War

Grades: 9-12

State standards

16.A.4a Analyze and report historical events to determine cause-and-effect relationships.

16.A.5a Analyze historical and contemporary developments using methods of historical inquiry (pose questions, collect and analyze data, make and support inferences with evidence, report findings).

16.A.4b Compare competing historical inter­pre­tations of an event.

16.B.4 (US) Identify political ideas that have dominated United States historical eras (e.g., Federalist, Jacksonian, Progressivist, New Deal, New Conservative).

16.D.4a (US) Describe the immediate and long-range social impacts of slavery.

16.D.4b (US) Describe unintended social consequences of political events in United States history (e.g., Civil War/emancipation, National Defense Highway Act/decline of inner cities, Vietnam War/anti-government activity).

Enduring Understandings:

1. The Gettysburg Address was a carefully prepared speech given by Abraham Lincoln at the battleground site.

2. Abraham Lincoln's primary message of the Gettysburg Address was not to talk about the war, but to discuss the themes of unity, democracy, freedom, and liberty.

3. The legacy of Lincoln's speech was to give such a tremendous address at a time when the nation was in balance and the country's future was uncertain.

4. The speech impacted Lincoln's legacy because the speech contributed at the time to the idea that the Civil War wasn't just a war, but a revolution, and Lincoln was quickly becoming the central figure or agent of the revolution.

Essential Questions:

  1. Why is the Gettysburg Address one of the most famous speeches in American history?
  2. What was Abraham Lincoln's message in delivering the Gettysburg Address?
  3. What is the legacy of the Gettysburg Address?
  4. How does the Gettysburg Address reflect the legacy of Abraham Lincoln?

Activities, Strategies, and Assessment/Closure (1-2 days)

1. Students will read the Gettysburg Address in pairs. (Handout, Link below)

2. As students read, they must underline 5 key words/concepts.

3. Next, students will answer the "essential questions."

4. As students finish up their work, we will come together as a class and share responses.

5. Assessment/Closing Assignment: Students will write a reflective journal article.

a. In the writing, the students must discuss the legacy of the Gettysburg Address

b. Students must also discuss the impact that the Gettysburg Address had on the rest of the Civil War and Lincoln's legacy.

c. 1 page required.

d. Students will then present their reflections to their peers.


Primary Source: Gettysburg Address: http://libertyonline.hypermall.com/Lincoln/gettysburg.html

Four score and seven years ago, our fathers brought forth upon this continent a new nation: conceived in liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.

Now we are engaged in a great civil war. . .testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated. . . can long endure. We are met on a great battlefield of that war.

We have come to dedicate a portion of that field as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.

But, in a larger sense, we cannot dedicate. . .we cannot consecrate. . . we cannot hallow this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember, what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here.

It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us. . .that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion. . . that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain. . . that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom. . . and that government of the people. . .by the people. . .for the people. . . shall not perish from the earth.