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Alabama Course of Study: US Studies, Beginnings to 1877, Grade 5

Below you will find the 2004 version of the ALCOS for Social Studies, grade 5. Beneath each standard are links to web resources that may be useful to you and your students.

  1. Locate physical features that impacted the exploration and settlement of the Americas.
    • World Atlas
      Free online maps of North America, with options for including rivers, landforms, etc.
  2. Identify causes and effects of prehistoric migration and settlement in North America.
    • North American Pre-History
      Interactive map of prehistoric migration and settlement in North America, with charts of migration patterns to certain regions and links to more information about prehistoric life.
  3. Compare major Native American cultures in respect to geographic region, natural resources, government, economy, and religion.
    • Not 'Indians,' Many Tribes: Native American Diversity
      Lesson plan for grades 3-5 which uses primary sources such as photographs, recipes, and traditional stories to teach students about the diversity among American Indian tribes across the country.
    • AmericanIndian.net
      Contains maps of American Indian tribal lands in North and Central America
    • Native Visions of the Natural World
      Carnegie Museum of Natural History exhibit website covering the Tlingit, Hopi, Iroquois, and Lakota tribes' differing visions of the natural world.
    • American Indian Research/Informational Sites
      Extensive list of websites devoted to research and/or information on American Indian tribes, past and present. Also includes links to lesson plans and suggested classroom activities for various grades.
  4. Explain effects of European exploration during the Age of Discovery upon European society and Native Americans, including the economic and cultural impact.
  5. Describe the early colonization of North America and reasons for settlement in the Northern, Middle, and Southern colonies.
    • Federal Resources for Educational Excellence
      FREE resources on the colonization of North America from the Library of Congress.
    • Acton Public Schools, Acton, MA: Powhatan Indian Village
      Provides basic information about and images pertaining to Powhatan Indians’ village life, culture, celebrations, and survival.
    • History Globe.com: The Jamestown Online Adventure
      Provides an interactive game about the Jamestown settlement.
    • Virtual Jamestown.org
      Digital archive of documents, interactive maps, and teaching activities about the Jamestown settlement and the "Virginia Experiment."
    • Virtual Jamestown Colony
      links to lesson plans on Jamestown, including corporate colonization, development of government, economic matters, organization of society, and broader themes of Jamestown settlement.
    • 13 Colonies Map Quiz
      This website features a map quiz of the original 13 colonies. Students are tested on their ability to use a compass rose and their knowledge of the location of each colony.
    • A Colonial Family and Community Webquest
      In this webquest from the Henry Ford Museum, students will go back in time and investigate the daily lives of the Daggetts, a colonial family from northeastern Connecticut. They will collect clues to uncover answers to 7 questions about colonial life in the 1700s.
    • Colonial Williamsburg
      The Colonial Williamsburg website has facts and pictures about places, clothing, people, slaves, and other things of colonial interest. It also has an online fieldtrip of Colonial Williamsburg, links to teacher resources, timelines, and libraries.
    • Rare Map Collection-Colonial America
      The website of the Hargrett Library's rare map collection, which contains digitized versions maps of the Americas, from 1625-1744
    • Colonial America
      Mountain City Elementary's webpage with lesson plans and activities for elementary students on colonial America.
    • 13 Original Colonies
      This is a website dedicated to information on the original 13 colonies, with facts, activities, and links on colonial history and life.
    • Congress for Kids: The Original Thirteen Colonies
      This website features tests, games, puzzles, web quests, and other activities about the colonies. The activities range from easy to difficult, and there are additional links to pages for the Declaration of Independence, Democracy, and the Articles of Confederation.
    • Social Studies for Kids
      This website allows you to click on the colonies to find out more information about their founding, with links to more information.
  6. Identify the impact of trade routes on emerging colonies in the Americas.
    • Life in the British Colonies
      Classroom website with descriptions of life in the American colonies, including cities, plantations, and the back country.
    • Interactive Map: Triangular Trade Routes
      Online interactive map of the Triangular trade routes between Europe, Africa, the West Indies, and the Thirteen Colonies. Routes show which goods traveled where.
  7. Identify events leading to the American Revolution, including the French and Indian War, the Stamp Act, the Intolerable Acts, the Boston Massacre, and the Boston Tea Party.
    • Declare the Causes: The Declaration of Independence
      Series of 8 lessons on the Declaration of Independence in which students investigate the complaints being made by the colonists and understand the document's purpose.
    • The American Revolution: Causes
      Lesson plan in which students examine the poem "Revolutionary Tea" to understand how British taxation led American colonists to revolution.
    • Social Studies For Kids Timeline
      Timeline of events leading up to the Revolutionary War, including French & Indian War, British tax legislation, the Intolerable Acts, and the Boston Massacre, with links to more information about each.
  8. Identify major events of the American Revolution, including the Battles of Lexington and Concord, the Battle of Bunker Hill, the Battle of Saratoga, and the Battle of Yorktown.
    • One If By Land, Two If By Sea
      Lesson plan which has students map the ride of Paul Revere using the Longfellow poem and historical maps of Boston.
    • The Revolutionary War Internet Scavenger Hunt
      This is an internet scavenger hunt on the causes, events, battles, and important people of the Revolutionary War, designed for grades 5-6.
    • The Revolutionary War
      Mountain City Elementary's webpage with lesson plans and activities for elementary students.
    • Pro-Teacher Lesson Plans
      This is a list of links to websites and lesson plans focusing on the Revolutionary War.
    • From Tyranny to Freedom
      During this lesson students will have the opportunity to research famous battles of the American Revolution and document these battles in a timeline, which they will construct. Students will also create a slideshow presentation about the American Revolution to be shared with classmates.
    • KidInfo: The American Revolution
      Webpage for students and teachers with well-organized links to information on the American Revolution.
  9. List steps involved in the development of the Constitution of the United States, including inadequacies of the Articles of Confederation and struggles over the ratification of the Constitution.
    • The Preamble to the Constitution: How Do You Make a More Perfect Union?
      Series of lesson plans in which students will study the preamble to the Constitution in order to explain the document's purpose and identify the fundamental values and principles expressed therein.
    • James Madison.com
      A collection of links to external lesson plans for teaching about the Constitution
    • Signers of the Constitution
      National Archives website with biographical information about the signers of the Constitution.
    • The Charters of Freedom
      Interactive website on the documents of the American Revolution and the new government (The Declaration of Independence, Constitution, and Bill of Rights) provided by the National Archives.
  10. Describe political, social, and economic events between 1803 and 1860 that led to the expansion of the territory of the United States.
    • Move the Cherokees
      Lesson plan in which students investigate the Chrerokee Nation and the Trail of Tears.
    • Federal Resources for Educational Excellence
      FREE resources from the Library of Congress covering expansion and reform in early US history.
    • Discovering Lewis & Clark
      Modern photographs of the path of Lewis & Clark's expeditions, excerpts from their journals, and a historical overview.
    • Go West in America with Lewis & Clark
      Online game from National Geographic in which students go on a simulated journey with Lewis & Clark. The game presents scenarios and has students make critical decisions.
    • New Perspectives on the West
      PBS website with 10 lesson plans focusing on the American West, meant for grades 6-12.
    • Learn About Westward Expansion
      Digital History website on American expansion in the 1840s and 1850s, including discussion of sectional tensions.
    • Fish and Wildlife on the Oregon Trail: Then and Now
      This website contains links to a scanned booklet describing the natural repercussions of the Oregon Trail migration, as well as the experience of traveling west. It was prepared by the Oregon Historical Society.
    • Indian Removal, 1814-1858
      Brief summary of US legislation and military action to remove eastern American Indian tribes across the Mississippi River and expand white settlement, with links to more information on the response of tribes and the infamous Trail of Tears. From PBS
    • The Mexican-American War
      Social Studies for Kids overview of the war in four parts, with links to maps and other resources.
    • US-Mexican War
      Interactive site from PBS with videos, timeline, and other resources about the Mexican-American War.
  11. Explain causes of and major events occurring during the War of 1812.
    • The War of 1812
      This "1812 experience" is comprised of numerous articles, quality book reviews and offers, extensive links, and the largest collection of War of 1812 images on the internet.
    • Turning Points in History: The War of 1812
      Lesson plan on the War of 1812 in which students are “investigative reporters,” researching primary source documents to learn about specific battles and events. Modifiable for grades 4-12.
    • Major Battles
      Links to summaries and maps of the major battles of the War of 1812. Also includes other significant events, photographs, and primary documents.
  12. Identify causes of the Civil War from the northern and southern viewpoints.
    • A Divided Nation Lesson Plan
      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.
    • Mr. Lincoln's Virtual Library
      Library of Congress online collection of documents, including speeches, maps, photographs, and other primary source material relevant to Lincoln's presidency. Also includes links to other useful online collections.
    • Lincoln Bicentennial
      Teacher resource page with lesson plans and ideas for all grade levels on the life of Abraham Lincoln.
    • The Civil War for Kids
      Class-made website on the Civil War which includes a timeline, brief biographies, maps, and images of flags, uniforms, and important figures. Also includes several classroom activities.
    • History Place Civil War Timeline
      Timeline of important historical events during the Civil War, beginning with the election of Abraham Lincoln in 1860 and ending with the passage of the 13th Amendment in 1865. Includes photographs and links to more information on various people, battles, and events, etc.
    • American Civil War Homepage
      Links to a wealth of resources (primary and secondary) for teaching about the Civil War, including music, images, biographies, etc.
    • Teaching With Historic Places
      List of lesson plans for teaching about the Civil War using various sites on the historic register, provided by the National Parks Service. Includes a lesson on the Alabama battle for Mobile Bay at Fort Morgan.
    • Ben's Guide to the Emancipation Proclamation
      Brief summary of the state of the country when the proclamation was issued, with a map of slave and free states, and links to an online version of the document.
    • Civil War Battles by State
      List of all Civil War battles organized by state, with links to more information about each one (including its location, commanders, campaigns, casualties, results, and a paragraph description).
  13. Identify social, political, and economic changes that occurred during Reconstruction.
    • American Experience: Reconstruction
      Companion website to PBS program with many helpful resources for learning about Reconstruction, including primary sources, interactive maps, and a teaching guide.
    • Andrew Johnson
      Documents on Andrew Johnson impeachment from HarpWeek which includes political cartoons, a simulation game, and links to primary source documents, etc.
    • Exploring the Reconstruction Era
      This unit introduces students to the Reconstruction Era (1865-1877) of American history. Students will discover that Reconstruction failed to alter the South's social structure or its distribution of wealth and power. They will conclude through their research that legislation passed during this period eventually prevailed and brought a change of life for African-Americans and women.
Teaching American History Program | The University of Alabama
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