Massachusetts Standards: History/Social Science (HSS) Frameworks Grades 7-12:


HSS Concepts & Skills applicable to Unit:

8th-12th grades History, (H) Geography, (G) Civics, (C) and Economics (E):

1.     Apply the skills of previous grades including:           
Grade 3.3. Observe and describe local or regional historic artifacts and sites and generate questions about their function, construction, and significance. (H)

           Grade 3.7. Give examples of the different ways people in a community can influence their local government. (C)

Grade 7.1. Compare information shown on modern and historical maps of the same region. (G)

            Grade 7. 4. Distinguish between primary and secondary sources and describe how each kind of source is used in interpreting history. (H)

3.  Interpret & construct timelines (H)

6. Distinguish between long-term and short-term cause and effect relationships. (H,C,G,E)

7. Show connections between historical events and ideas and larger social, economic and political trends and developments (H,C,G,E)

8. Interpret the past within its own context. (H,C,E)

10. Distinguish historical fact from opinion. (H,C,E)


Standards Related to Social, Political, and Religious Change, 1800-1860

USI.31 Describe the formation of the abolitionist movement, the roles of various abolitionists, and the response of southerners and northerners to abolitionism. (H)


Standards Related to Civil War and Reconstruction 1860-1877

USI.35 Describe how the different economies and cultures of the North and South contributed to the growing importance of sectional politics in the early 19th c. (H)


USI.36 Summarize the critical developments leading to the Civil War. (H)


USI.37 Identify on a map of North America, Union and Confederate States at the outbreak of the war. (H,G)


USI.40 Provide examples of the various effects of the Civil War (H,E)


Massachusetts Standards: English Language Arts (ELA) Grades 7-12


Language Strand

Standard 3:  Students will make oral presentations that demonstrate appropriate consideration of audience, purpose, and the information to be conveyed. 


Reading and Literature Strand

Standard 8:  Students will identify the basic facts and main ideas in a text and use them as the basis for interpretation.


Standard 13:  Students will identify, analyze, and apply knowledge of the purposes, structure and elements of nonfiction or informational materials and provide evidence from the text to support their understanding.


Standard 18:  Students will plan and present dramatic readings, recitations, and performances that demonstrate appropriate consideration of audience and purpose.


Composition Strand

Standard 19:  Students will write with a clear focus, coherent organization, and sufficient detail.


Standard 23:  Students will organize ideas in writing in a way that makes sense for their purpose. 


Standard 24:  Research: Students will gather information from a variety of sources, analyze and evaluate the quality of the information they obtain, and use it to answer their own questions. They will apply steps for obtaining and evaluating information and presenting research, including differentiating between primary and secondary sources.


Technology competency skills


Essential Questions and Assessment:

The Unit asks Essential Question(s) for each lesson. The main EQ is How did the war affect daily lives? Objectives related to the Standards are also listed for each lesson and Assessment is based on reaching these standards.

The 7 Lessons will be assessed by three methods with % of Unit grading as follows:

1. Class participation, including Internet research and report, timeline, mapwork       20%

2. Biography of Town Character 10%

3. Journal notes for all lessons, according to criteria provided            20%

4. Work on a final event combining Town Character research, script writing and role-play; teamwork for event  (sample rubric provided) 50% 


General Objectives include:

      The students will use technology and research skills to understand the larger context of the Civil War and the differences in economies and cultures of the North and South. (HSS standard USI.35)

      The students will learn about the critical developments leading to the war. (HSS standard USI.36)

      The students will use map skills to locate sites related to the Civil War (North-South states, major battle sites). (HSS standard USI.37)

      The students will use research and writing skills to understand the local context of the war including the role of the town in providing men to serve in the war and the financial sacrifice and manpower support at home. (HSS standard USI.35)

      The students will construct and interpret a timeline. (HSS concepts 8-12.3)

      The students will use map skills to compare local maps from Civil War period to today, and locate remaining Civil War sites on a field trip tour. (HSS concept 7.1)

      The students will understand the difference between primary and secondary sources (HSS concept 7.4)

      The students will use a variety of primary sources to write a biography of a Town Character and a script to role play: public records including census, and private sources including oral history, anecdotes, letters, and journals. (ELA Standard 3, 24)

      The students will demonstrate their research and script writing through a role play performance of Civil War Characters, (ELA Standards 18, 24) 

      The students will appreciate the richness of local study resources and become aware of local research institutions for understanding historical content and context. (HSS concepts 3.3, 3.7)

The students will make connections between Civil War events and ideas and post-war effects on the towns social, economic and political development (HSS concept 8-12, 7)