Lesson plan

Making a New Home: Colonial America

Settlers began arriving to build homes for themselves in America in the early bits of the 17th century. In this lesson, your students will learn a little about what it took to leave home and become a settler.
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Students will be able to read and comprehend the text excerpts. Students will be able to imagine the colonization efforts.

(5 minutes)
  • Tell students that today they are going to be looking at what it might have been like to be one of the earliest settlers in America.
  • Activate prior knowledge by asking students questions about early American settlers. Potential questions include: What towns did the earliest settlers establish? Where did they come from? What did they have to do when they got to America?
(10 minutes)
  • Pass out the Colonial Heroes worksheet, and read it to the class.
  • Discuss the first question with your students before having them complete the worksheet in partners or small groups.
(15 minutes)
  • Pass out the Come to the Colonies worksheet, and allow students to complete them with partners.
  • Walk around to each group, observing and assisting as needed.
(15 minutes)
  • Separate students and have them go back to their desks.
  • Hand out the Creating a Home worksheet for students to complete on their own.
  • If there is time, give students the History of American Fashion worksheet to color, and encourage your students to write a story about the character in context.
  • Enrichment: For advanced students, ask them to write a paragraph or essay about what they envision life to have been like for a 10-13 year old during the early 1600s in America. Give them access to the library, classroom, and internet resources to research other settlements and privateers-turned-colonial captains.
  • Support: Give your students extra time to read the worksheets, and have them act out the stories to imagine what it might be like to live in the colonial era.
(5 minutes)
  • Instruct students to turn in all of the worksheets for assessment.
(10 minutes)
  • Close by asking students to say the answers to the questions on the worksheet.

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