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Frontier: Research Activities and/or Assessments

Research Activities and/or Assessments

Think, Pair, Share Activity on the Lewis and Clark Expedition. (This technique may be used for any topic.)

Thomas Jefferson told Captain Lewis to choose sturdy frontiersmen who knew how to live off the land. He warned Lewis not to take “young gentlemen.” Have each student think individually what traits or abilities would have been needed to be a member of the Corps of Discovery. Working in pairs, have students share their ideas and thoughts with each other. This enables the teacher to observe what knowledge the students have when thinking about the traits needed to be a member of the Corps of Discovery. Examples may include: responsible, courageous, ability to persevere, ability to adapt, good marksman, swimmer, ability to work with others, etc.

Have students think of and write down examples from their own lives in which they have recognized some or all of these characteristics in themselves.

Students may then share their thoughts or examples from their own experiences with a partner on one or all of the traits or abilities by writing down their ideas on the board and/or poster paper for the entire class to see and to discuss.

Lewis and Clark’s journals mention the Corps engaging in fiddle music, singing, and European dances such as the jig and the reel. Have students research, learn, and dance a jig or reel. A good site follows.

Oracle ThinkQuest

Have students research the various spellings of Sakakawea (i.e., Sacagawea, Sacajawea). The Bureau of American Ethnology established her name in 1910 as “Sacagawea,” spelling used by the Encyclopedia Americana, World Book Encyclopedia, the U.S. Geographic Name Board, the U.S. National Park Services, and numerous history scholars.

Have students research the lives and works of George Catlin, Prince Maximilian, Karl Bodmer, and John James Audubon, who were visitors to the Upper Missouri. Web links are found at the link below or on the CD-ROM with the Teacher Resource Guide to aid the students in their research.

Upper Missouri Visitors Web Links

Assign individuals or small groups to research and demonstrate their knowledge of the frontier era of North Dakota through one of the formats listed below. Examples include:

Research the military forts in North Dakota (origin of name, location, function, etc.) and share with the class.

Research the fur trading forts in North Dakota (origin of name, location, function, etc.) and share with the class.

Beaver pelts were used extensively in Europe in the 18th and 19th century for the manufacture of hats. Research the importance of the beaver hat using one of the choices listed below (include descriptions of the different styles of hats and techniques used to process the furs into finished hats):

Report, radio broadcast, bulletin board, slide presentations, student-generated tests of material, PowerPoint or iMovie, news reports, oral histories of events, interviews, dramatize legends and myths, commercials, jump rope rhymes/poetry, plays, role plays, song writing, tv talk shows, weather reports, tongue twisters, maps, mobiles, brochures, crossword puzzles, illustrated and written book, scrapbooks, timelines, cartoons, model or diorama