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Alabama Course of Study: US Studies, 1877 to Present, Grade 6

Below you will find the 2004 version of the ALCOS for Social Studies, grade 6. Beneath each standard are links to web resources that may be useful to you and your students.

  1. Describe the Westward Expansion and its technological, economic, and social influence on the people of the United States prior to World War I.
    • History of the American West: 1860-1920
      American Memory collection of photographs of the American West, along with background information on famous photographers and three presentations of selected photographs with narrative captions ("Native American Women," "LC McLure and Denver, the Beautiful City," and "The 10th Mountain Division")
    • Transportation to the Western Frontier Lesson Plan
      There were several modes of transportation for early settlers to use when they moved to the west. Students will research and document four modes of transportation using the Internet and print resources in the library.
  2. Describe the impact of industrialization, free markets, urbanization, communication, and cultural changes in the United States prior to World War I.
    • Welcome to All?
      This is a hands-on, technology-based lesson that relates a student's individual immigration history to the boom of immigration in the late 1800's through the early 1900's. This lesson also gives students insight into the rise of anti-immigrant feelings in the United States during this time period.
  3. Identify causes and consequences of the Spanish-American War.
    • The United States Becomes A World Power
      Digital History online module which covers the Spanish American War and America's first experiences with imperialism.
    • The World of 1898
      Library of Congress collection of photographs and documents from the Spanish-American War.
    • The Spanish American War
      Website devoted to the war with articles written by historians about battles and significant events. Also includes primary source materials such as photographs and transcribed interviews.
  4. Describe changing social conditions during the Progressive Period.
    • Who Made America?
      Includes profiles of inventors from the early days of the U.S. up until the modern era, organized by name, chronological timeline, and geographic region.
    • Theodore Roosevelt on Film
      Library of Congress American Memory collection featuring Teddy Roosevelt. It includes a timeline, essays, photos, and documents discussing his being the first president to have had his life and career documented on film.
    • Political Cartoons Illustrating Progressivism and the Election of 1912
      Lesson plans and resources from the National Archives Educator page, which teach progressivism and the presidential election of 1912 by examining political cartoons.
    • Thomas Nast Cartoons
      HarpWeek's Gallery of Thomas Nast cartoons, some of which comment on Progressives, as well as Reconstruction.
    • Digital History Documents
      A collection of primary sources on the Progressive Era including documents on the Muckrakers, Women's Suffrage, Conservation, Prohibition, and Cities.
    • Timeline
      A useful timeline of the major events of the Progressive Era, from 1879 to 1917.
    • Progressive Era Resources
      Digital History's page for the Progressive Era, offering background information, recommended documents and resources, and links to lesson plans and fact sheets.
    • Triangle Factory Fire
      Online exhibit detailing the Triangle Factory Fire, with primary source documents, photographs, and political cartoons.
    • Eleanor Roosevelt
      Archive of Eleanor Roosevelt’s personal papers from the Progressive Era with lesson plans and further resources for classroom use.
    • Progressivism
      Gilder Lehrman Institute for American History online learning module on the Progressive Era with links to primary documents.
  5. Identify causes of World War I and reasons for entry into the war by the United States.
    • Photos of the Great War
      Online gallery of photographs from WWI which includes images from the trenches and the war at sea, as well as images of heads of state, politicians, military leaders, troops, and the weapons of war.
    • WWI Photographs
      Photos from WWI, including the battlefield and the home front.
    • WWI Lesson Plans
      A list of lesson plans dealing with WWI and the materials found in the Truman Library collection.
    • World War I
      History Channel website with links to actual letters written home from World War I soldiers.
    • The Great War
      Comprehensive PBS website for the program, “The Great War and the Shaping of the 20th Century,” which includes background information, summaries, and educational resources. Appropriate for student exploration or as a helpful guide to teachers planning lessons.
    • Weapons of World War I Lesson Plan
      The students will use the Internet and the school's media center to discover the weapons of World War I. They will compare and contrast the weapons used during that time period with the weapons that are used in warfare today. At the conclusion of the lesson, the students will create a digital slideshow with the history, uses, and changes in old and new military technology.
  6. Identify cultural and economic developments in the society of the United States from 1877 through the 1930's.
    • Extra! Extra! Harlem Renaissance Tribune Lesson Plan
      From writing with Langston Hughes to dancing with Bojangles, explore 1920-30 Harlem and publish a newspaper about the arts and entertainment of this cultural renaissance that brought new energy and sound to the world.
    • Forming Unions Lesson Plan
      This activity uses technology to generate interest in the study of labor unions. Students will use the Internet for research and conclude with a presentation about union leaders or labor organizations.
  7. Identify causes of the Great Depression.
    • Hardships During the Great Depression
      Students will be divided into groups of 2 or more. Each group will be given a choice of jobs that were available during the 1930s. Students will learn to manage their cost of living and household expenses.
    • What Was So Depressing About the Great Depression?
      This lesson focuses on the effects of the Great Depression on American life in the period from 1929-1940. Students learn about changes in art, music and literature that symbolize life of the everyday man. Students also learn about the causes that lead to the Great Depression.
    • The Collapse of the Old Order, 1929-1949
      A Houghton-Mifflin textbook site with links to maps of government types during the 1930's, photographs, and suggested classroom activities.
    • The Great Depression
      A website devoted to information on the Great Depression and its international effects.
    • The Great Depression and World War II
      National Archives' "Teaching With Documents" Lesson plans which use primary source documents to teach students about the Great Depression and WWII.
    • Picturing the Century
      National Archives collection of photographs from the Great Depression and the New Deal.
    • Hoover Dam
      PBS website dedicated to the construction of the Hoover Dam
    • Lesson Ideas for the Great Depression
      Article for teachers from Michigan's state website which gives lesson ideas for teaching about the Great Depression in the context of Michigan history. Many ideas could be modified to reflect life in your own state.
    • I Remember...Reminiscences of the Great Depression
      Brief first-hand accounts of daily life during the Great Depression from the Michigan History Magazine.
    • What Was Life Like During the Great Depression? 
      Lesson plan from Michigan's state website in which students interview a friend or family member who lived through the Great Depression.
    • From the Great War to the Depression
      Lesson plan for using the Discovery Channel program From the Great War to the Depression in the classroom. Grades 6-8.
    • Twelve Lessons for Teaching the Great Depression
      Twelve Great Depression lesson plans from Education World that can be used in various disciplines, and modified for use at all grade levels.
    • The New Deal Network
      The New Deal Network from the Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt Institute, with lesson plans and resources for use in the classroom.
    • Surviving the Dust Bowl
      Interactive website from PBS based on the program “Surviving the Dust Bowl,” with interviews, photographs, and videos available online.
    • The Great Depression: What Would It Be Like Today?
      In this lesson, students calculate the percentage decline in factors affecting the quality of life such as wages and unemployment, from before the Depression to the beginning of the New Deal. Students then calculate what the same percentage decline for these factors would mean for their lives if it happened today. Adaptable for grades 6-12.
    • Immigration/Migration: Today and During the Great Depression
      Lesson plans for studying immigration and migration during the Great Depression and today using oral histories.
    • Farming in the 1930's
      Interviews and information on farming in Nebraska during the 1930's which detail hardships and experiences.
    • Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?
      Unit plan for grades 7-8 in which covers the causes and hardships of the Great Depression in the United States.
    • Show Me the Money!
      A collection of links to information and activities on the Great Depression.
    • Great Depression Photos
      More pictures of the Great Depression from about.com.
    • Songs of the Great Depression
      Lyrics to songs popular during the Great Depression.
    • The Roaring Twenties and the Great Depression
      Links to more sites on topics of interest during the 1920's and 1930's.
    • Stock Market Crash
      Brief summary of the stock market crash from a PBS timeline.
    • About the Great Depression
      Information about the depression in the US and globally.
    • The Great Depression to 1935
      Information on the Great Depression
    • Crossroads Program Great Depression Lessons
      Unit Plan for teaching about the Great Depression, including interview questions for GD survivors and political cartoons.
    • Riding the Rails
      Information and lesson plans for the film “Riding the Rails,” which discusses the plight of many teenagers during the Great Depression who lived on the railways, hopping freight trains across the country.
    • America's Great Depression
      Helpful source of information about the depression from an amateur historian, with book and video lists, a timeline, and links to online collections of photographs.
    • The Depression News
      Michigan's History, Arts, and Libraries' gallery of information on the Great Depression.
    • Great Depression Cooking With Clara
      Website of 94 year old woman who keeps a blog, a YouTube channel, and has recently published a cookbook of frugal recipes and cooking techniques from the Great Depression era which she learned from her mother.
    • Popular Songs of the 1930's
      Song lyrics to music from the Great Depression era.
    • Works Progress Administration Art
      Works of art created by the WPA (Federal Art Projects).  Has great pictures (some in Alabama).
    • New Deal Periodic Table
      Online interactive Periodic Table of New Deal programs from the FDR Library and Museum. Also provides a printable table for classroom use.
    • Dear Mrs. Roosevelt
      Letters to FDR and Eleanor from young people about the Great Depression and lesson plans for using the letters.
  8. List key figures, significant events, and reasons for the involvement of the United States in World War II.
  9. Identify changes in the American home front during World War II.
    • On the Homefront
      Photo Gallery and lesson activities from the Library of Congress detailing life on the homefront during WWII.
    • Mr. Donn.org
      Links to units and lesson plans on WWII, including life on the home front, foreign policy, and the Holocaust for various grade levels.
    • World War II: The Home Front, Lesson Plan
      Students will identify the impact World War II had on civilian Americans and associate posters of the time with attitudes of the time. Students will create a digital slideshow or newsletter incorporating content acquired through research.
    • Japanese Internment Webquest
      Webquest in which students form an international tribunal that charges the US government for human rights violations following the internment of Japanese-American citizens during WWII.
    • Ansell Adams' Photographs of Manzanar
      Library of Congress collection of Ansell Adam’s photographs of the Japanese-American  internment camp at Manzanar. Includes photo gallery, essay, and timeline.
    • Japanese Internment
      Online article on the history of Japanese-American internment from history.com. Includes a few historical photographs.
    • Japanese-American Internment Camps During WWII  
      University of Utah collections of photographs of the Tule Lake and Topaz internment camps.
    • Children of the Camps
      Website for the documentary, "Children of the Camps," with a history of the internment camps, a timeline, and links to primary source documents.
    • Department of Justice Search
      More links from the US Dept. of Justice on Japanese Internment Camps
    • Go For Broke.org
      Website of the Japanese-American WWII veterans, dedicated to their history. Includes oral histories and resources for teaching about Japanese-Americans' involvement in WWII and Executive order 9066.
    • Online Scavenger Hunt
      Questions and links to sources of information for completing an online scavenger hunt about Japanese Internment Camps.
    • War Relocation Camps in Arizona
      Website devoted to the history of relocation camps in Arizona, from 1942-1946. Includes many photos and articles on life in the camps.
  10. Identify major social and cultural changes in the United States from 1945 to 1960.
    • A 1950's Kind of Day
      A culminating activity for a study of 1950's culture in which students present research projects on trends, popular music, and new technology, etc., with ideas for topics and ways of presenting information.
    • Teaching the 1950's in History Class
      Article for teachers with lesson ideas and suggestions on how to connect 1950's culture with contemporary events.
  11. Identify critical events occurring in the United States and throughout the world from the Truman through the Johnson Administrations, including the Cold War, Berlin Airlift, Korean Conflict, space race, construction of Berlin Wall, Bay of Pigs invasion, Cuban Missile Crisis, and Vietnam War.
  12. Identify components of John F. Kennedy's New Frontier and Lyndon B. Johnson's Great Society.
  13. Describe the role of major civil rights leaders and significant events occurring during the modern Civil Rights Movement.
    • Birmingham Civil Rights Institute
      Website for BCRI, with extensive resources page, searchable archive, photo gallery, and online exhibits on the history of the Civil Rights Movement.
    • Rosa Parks and the Civil Rights Movement
      This lesson introduces students to Rosa Parks and the beginning of the Montgomery Bus Boycott. After considering the impact of Ms. Parks' heroism, students will explore its relevance to the beginning of the Civil Rights Movement. Students will learn new vocabulary and will answer a questionnaire that will be published on the web. Students will then create a tribute to Rosa Parks' heroism that will be submitted to a classroom book.
    • Dr. Carter G. Woodson
      Brief biography of Woodson from the Dr. Carter G. Woodson African American Museum
    • Civil Rights Movement Veterans
      Great site on the Civil Rights Movement, with histories, timelines, photos, and personal stories.
    • The Rise and Fall of Jim Crow
      Online guide to the PBS film “The Rise and Fall of Jim Crow,” with videos and interactive activities.
    • Powerful Days in Black and White
      Photographs of the Civil Rights Movement taken by Charles Moore.
    • Timeline
      Timeline of the Civil Rights Movement from CNN
    • Martin Luther King
      Archive of news and photographs of MLK and the Civil Rights Movement compiled by the Seattle Times, with biographical information, study guides, and teaching resources.
    • Eyes on the Prize
      Historical video clips from the Civil Rights Movement provided by the PBS documentary "Eyes on the Prize" website.
  14. Identify cultural and economic changes throughout the United States from 1960 to the present.
    • The Tumultuous Sixties
      Links to summaries of major movements and social issues of the 1960's from Digital History. Includes feminism, the Civil Rights Movement, the American Indian Movement, and the Hispanic Movement.
  15. Explain major political events from the Nixon Administration to the present, including the Vietnam War; Watergate; the collapse of the Soviet Union; the Gulf War; the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks; and the War on Terrorism.
Teaching American History Program | The University of Alabama
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