Industrial Revolution Lesson Plans for 8th Grade American History
Need some help with your American History lessons? Take a peek at my lesson plans and ideas.
My first year teaching I was dying to see other teachers' plan books, but most of them were either blank or didn't seem suitable for our students ("high-risk" with poor reading skills). After teaching American history to 8th graders for a few years, I've developed this webpage in the hopes that it can help first year teachers get an idea of what to do, or help out some experienced teachers freshen up some lessons. Just to let you know, my "at-risk" students have the same passing rate on the history portion of the state standardized exam as the "advanced" students.
Below are my weekly lessons for weeks 20 - 22: The American Industrial Revolution. Please see my other lenses to see my complete lesson plan book. Please visit my Procedures and General Ideas for 8th Grade American History Squidoo Lens to see my classroom set up, procedures, grading, use of textbook, exam ideas, etc.
Week 20: Day 1: Industrial North
Why are there so many factories in America?
HISTORY QUESTION OF THE WEEK: What was produced at the first American factory? (Note: "Textile" will not be accepted as the correct answer.) [Answer: Yarn. It was produced at Samuel Slater's Mill, founded in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, in 1790. Workers at the spinning machines lived in company housing and worked for wages paid in credit at the company store. Cloth itself was not produced at the mill: The yarn was woven into cloth by independent hand weavers working out of their homes.]
Note: Unit IV: Our New Nation and Unit V: The American Industrial Revolution will be combined into one exam. The notebook will also not be graded until the end of Unit V.
Objective: Why are there so many factories in America?
1. Study the statistics describing the U.S. in 1800 & 1860. A) What are the 3 biggest changes you see on the chart? B) What do you think caused these changes? C) Do you think these changes were good or bad for America? D) Why? (The overhead is a chart comparing statistics in the US. between 1800 and 1860. Here's the information: U.S. Population: 5,084,912 / 31,183,582, Urban population: 7% / 20%, Slave population: 887,612 / 1,305,223, Immigrants per year: 10,000 / 250,000, Percent of population immigrants: 2% / 33%, Value of manufactured products: $100 Million / $1 Trillion, Number of Invention Patented: 4 / 4778, Miles of railroad track: 0 / 31,000, Cotton production: 73,000 bales(bundle of cotton) / 3,841,000 bales, Hours of labor per cotton bale: 601 / 303)
2. Create Unit V: The American Industrial Revolution cover page
3. Pre-test over this unit: List 3 differences between the North and the South, define economics, define tariff, list 3 inventors, explain what the nullification crisis was. (5 minutes)
4. Read pp. 359-364 & answer questions on Industrial North
5. Show video, "America Past," (about 2 minutes) of how textile machines work and how Eli Whitney's Interchangeable Parts worked. Discuss British Industrial Revolution, child labor laws & minimum wage, and women's rights
Good American Industrial Revolution DVD
This was the DVD I used to show clips of what Mill life was like in the 17th and 18 centuries in New England. Much of it is animated, which my students enjoyed.
Week 20: Day 2: North vs. South
Why did the North and South develop differently?
Objective: Why did the North and South develop differently?
Homework: Get agenda signed
1. Look at the two pictures on the overhead comparing the North and the South. List 6+ differences shown between the two places.
2. Show pictures from Adventure Tales of America: An Illustrated History of the United States, 1492-1877 (Signal Media Corporation) on the American Industrial Revolution to discuss the initial inventions.
3. The Changing South questions (30 minutes) using textbook
4. Pass around a raw cotton boll with the seed in it to show how difficult removing the seed is.
5. Video & powerpoint lecture on cotton gin ("Inventors and the Americas" and "Second Revolution")
6. Notes on How America Changed (flow chart): Turning your paper the long way, write, "Samuel Slater." From him draw an arrow to "Textile Factory." From there draw 4 arrows with one of the following written by them: "Start Industrial Revolution in America, Women demand equal rights, Child labor laws & minimum wage, Immigrants come to find work." From here draw two arrows with one of the following written after each: "Cities in Northeast, More inventions." Under "Samuel Slater," write, "Eli Whitney." Have two arrows coming from his name. From one arrow write, "Interchangeable parts" then pointing to "Assembly line." From the other arrow write, "Cotton Gin." From here draw two arrows with one of the following written after each: "South becomes dependent on slaves, People move West to get land to grow cotton."
7. Go over powerpoint slides comparing North and South. For each slide, have students determine which is the North and which is the South. Have them explain how they know.
8. Cotton is king worksheet
9. WRAP-UP: THE NORTH VS. THE SOUTH: Draw a picture of the North and the South during this period. Include three differences of the two regions in each picture.
I use this book throughout the year to make excellent overheads.
Week 21: Day 1: Transportation
How did the developments in transportation change America?
HISTORY QUESTION OF THE WEEK: What were the two major ethnic groups employed in the building of the first transcontinental railroad? [Answer: The eastern branch, the Union Pacific, employed mainly Irish workers; the western branch, the Central Pacific, employed mainly Chinese workers. The two work crews met at Promontory Utah, in May 1869, completing the transcontinental link. ]
Objective: How did the developments in transportation change America?
1. Read the following quote and respond to the questions: "Every day the North grows more wealthy and densely populated while the South is stationary [not moving] or growing poor." Alex de Tocqueville, French traveler in America, 1831 a) With what part of the U.S. was de Tocqueville most impressed? How do you know? B) If you were visiting a foreign country, what types of things might you notice that would convince you that the city/country was growing richer and/or more heavily populated? C) What do you think caused such big changes between the North and South?
2. Notes from transparencies: roads (p. 224), canals (pp. 352-354), steamboats, trails
3. Terrific Transportation Internet Hunt: Load The Transportation Guide Page onto your school computer. Pass out The Transportation Student Worksheet to all the students. Also print out a sheet for your overhead so you can do one as an example with the class. For the worksheet have students sketch a picture of that form of transportation, take 5 notes on what it was, 1 note on where it was used, the name of the person who is famous for using/inventing it, and 2 notes about that person. All of this information can be found on the Internet using The Transportation Guide Page. The links and pictures I used for my Master Transportation Guide Page came from Learning Advice: The Wilderness Ride.
TRANSPORTATION OUTLINE STUDENT WORKSHEET
Draw your sketch of the mode of transportation in the margin.
I. Keelboat and Mike Fink
A. What was a keelboat?
B. Where was this used?
C. Who is famous for using this?
II. Clermont Steamboat and Robert Fulton
A. What was the Clermont Steamboat?
B. Where was this used?
C. Who invented this?
III. Erie Canal and De Witt Clinton
A. What was this?
B. Where was this used?
C. Who is famous for constructing this?
IV. Wilderness Road/Cumberland Gap and Daniel Boone
A. What was the Wilderness Road?
B. Where was this used?
C. Who is famous for creating this?
V. "Old Ironsides" Locomotive and Matthias Baldwin
A. What was the "Old Ironsides" Locomotive?
B. Where was this used?
C. Who is famous for inventing this?
1. What for things do you know now that you did not know before?
2. Which type of transportation do you think was the most important in connecting the country? Why?
Add some clips from this DVD.
Week 21: Day 2: Eli Whitney
How did Eli Whitney's inventions change America?
Objective: How did Eli Whitney's inventions change America?
Homework: Get agenda signed
1. A) What 4 things did you learn about transportation in the last class that you didn't know before? B) Which type of transportation do you think was the most important in connecting the country? C) Why?
2. "How the Erie Canal Changed Everything" notes: Diagonally across the page draw the "Erie Canal" with 6 barrels evenly spaced along the river. (Barrels are drawn because as the Irish immigrants worked through Buffalo, the citizens ensured that the work moved quickly by placing whiskey barrels full of whiskey at measured intervals along the route of the canal.) Write one of the following at each of the barrels: "People move west (Ohio, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan), New York City becomes America's largest city, Immigrants (Irish), Price of products decreases, Many new inventions, Easier to transport goods, so more profit, so more factories."
3. Powerpoint presentation on Eli Whitney
4. Eli Whitney posters. Place posters of the following around the room: Growth of Railroads, Transportation, 1800/1860 Chart, King Cotton, Cotton Production in the US 1790-1840, A System of Canals, Inventors Hall of Fame, U.S. Immigration, 1821-1860, Manufacturing & Muskets, 1800/1860, Change in Textile Industry, Northern and Southern Economies, 1861. Give each student a chart on which they have to fill out the following for each placard: Name of Poster, Region (North, South, or both) it deals with, Subject of poster, main fact, and connection to Eli Whitney's inventions. Have one space filled out for each poster on the chart. Students should move in pairs from poster to poster in order to fill out the chart. Have students turn in charts. Then have the class draw conclusions from what they just read and wrote.
5. WRAP-UP: COTTON GIN AND INTERCHANGEABLE PARTS: BEFORE AND AFTER: In the four squares, draw a picture of the North and South before and after Eli Whitney's inventions
6. Pass out extra credit worksheet to students who want it. Sheet includes part of the diary entries from Lewis and Clark's exploration of the Louisiana Purchase and an observation made by someone visiting the mills in Lowell, Massachusetts and Manchester, New Hampshire in 1836, as printed in The Harbinger, November 14, 1836.
Eli Whitney for ESL/Lower Lever Readers
This is great for ESL or lower-level reading students!
Week 22: Day 1: Tariffs
Will tariffs split the Union?
HISTORY QUESTION OF THE WEEK: What made the Colt revolver different from previous handguns? [Answer: Previous handguns could fire only once before they had to be reloaded. Samuel Colt's invention, patented in 1835, had a six-chambered cylinder that rotated with each shot, automatically readying another bullet for firing. The Colt revolver became standard equipment on America's western frontier.]
What was the first major export industry in America? (Think back to the start of America.) [Answer: Tobacco. By 1617, 50,000 pounds of the Virginia-grown crop were exported to England.]
Objective: Will tariffs split the Union?
1. Your brother is starting to become extremely good at basketball. In order to get even better, your brother tells your mother that he will need special privileges. She agrees. From now on your dinner will consist of whatever he wants to eat. He can use the bathroom whenever he wants to for however long he wants. Plus, he has complete control over the TV and computer. A) In 5+ words, how would you feel about this? B) In 5+ words, how would your brother feel about this? C) In 5 + words, how would your mom feel about this? D) What, if anything, would you do about this? (Teacher explanation: Your brother represents the North, your mother represents the President and National Government (favoring the North), and you represent the South (getting frustrated with the President's favor toward the North.))
2. Tariffs: show tariffs using overhead about rolls of cloth (prices are not historically accurate): "A Roll of Cloth": Compare the North with England: Cost to weave = $10 vs. $8 (because England had better faster machines), To make a $2 profit, the selling price (without tariffs) = $12 vs. $10. Northern factory owners creamed, "HELP! We're going out of business!" The federal government passes a $3 tariff (tax on imported goods) on cloth. See what happens: With the $3 tariff, the roll of cloth from the North costs $12, but the roll of cloth from England costs $13. Everyone pays more for cloth, but the Northern factory owner is happy.
3. Read 'Nullification Crisis." from p. 194 in History Alive!'s accompanying textbook. On a sticky note, write the 3 most important main ideas from the article. Nullify (2 N's)= states say NO to a NATIONAL law
4. Tear in half a map of the U.S. with the word "secession" written across it to show how the South was getting ready to secede.
5. Will tariffs split the Union?
o Divide students into groups of 3. Give each member in the group the same role card. [See the below for information to include on role cards.]
o Students answer the following questions for their characters: Who are you? Who is to blame for this situation and why do you feel this way? What do you think, if anything, the federal government should do to solve the problem? Is your character for or against tariffs? Why or why not? Is your group for or against nullification? Why or why not? (15 minutes)
o Then the group makes a poster with the group name, a catchy slogan, and a picture/symbol that represents the group's beliefs toward tariffs. (15 minutes).
o Groups present their posters and the rest of the class fills out their charts from the information presented. For each group that presents, the class will check of if he favors or opposes tariffs and if he favors or opposes nullification. Do the first one with them. After the groups have presented, have students check off in general how the North and South felt about tariffs and nullification.
6. Show South Carolina/Snake cartoon and discuss what it means. Ask what details they see, what each detail represents, what position the cartoonist is taking on the Nullification Crisis, how the North would feel about this cartoon, how the South would feel about this cartoon, and what if they personally agree with the cartoonist's position on the tariff and Nullification crisis.
7. WRAP-UP: TARIFF DIVIDE: Study the cartoon from p. 374 from This is America's Story (Wilder, Ludlum, Brown). Write 5+ sentences to describe what is going on in the cartoon.
TARIFF ROLE CARDS (Continues into next module):
ENGLISH CLOTH MANUFACTURER - You are a manufacturer of cloth in England. Before the Tariff of 1828 was passed, you were making big money selling your clothing makers in the United States. Your cloth was of the highest quality and you could sell it for prices the same as, or even below, cloth manufacturers in America - even after paying to ship it all the way across the Atlantic Ocean. Since the tariff was passed by Congress, your business in the United States has declined to almost nothing. Because of the tax on cloth entering America, your cloth is now far too expensive for Americans to buy. They have no choice but to but the poorer quality American-made cloth. Because the tariff has made your cloth so expensive, the American cloth manufacturers have even raised their prices! You and anyone who buys cloth in the USA are not happy, but the American cloth manufacturers certainly are! You admire the courage of South Carolina, which has said it will nullify (declared illegal) the tariff, refusing to enforce it in the state.
Week 22: Day 1: Role Cards for Tariffs Continued
NORTHERN CLOTH MANUFACTURER - You are a manufacturer of cloth in America. Before Congress passes the tariff of 1828, you almost went out of business. The British cloth manufacturers were selling their cloth so cheaply in the USA that you could not compete with them. American clothing makers were buying their cloth because it was cheaper and of better quality. You wrote a letter to your congressman. You argued that the English were selling so cheap just so they could cause you and other American cloth weavers to go out of business. Once that happened, they would raise their prices and the situation would be even worse. You urged Congress to put a tariff on British cloth to protect you from their competition. The tariff has been very good for you! You can now make a great profit because the tariffs are so high on cloth imported to the United States. Your sales are great and you have even been able to raise your prices some. You also don't have to worry so much that British cloth is better quality than yours. You can even pay your workers higher salaries. You have heard that South Carolina has "nullified" (declared illegal) the tariff law, refusing to collect the tariff in the state. You also heard rumors that it is threatening to secede (withdraw from the Union). You are very concerned by this. You think them leaving the Union might cause a war to occur.
SOUTH CAROLINA PLANTER - You are a cotton plantation owner in South Carolina. Before Congress passed the tariff, the clothing and other items you bought were relatively inexpensive to buy. Most of your clothes were made from high quality, inexpensive cloth from England. Since there are hardly any factories in the South, you have to buy clothes from either the North or England - so people in the South pretty much have to pay whatever prices are charged. You were not happy when the tariff was passed. Since it put a high tax on cloth imported from England, the people who manufacturer your clothes have to pay a much higher price for the cloth they use. That means they have had to raise prices on clothes they make. You believe the tariff is an unfair tax. It is designed to protect cloth weavers in the North from competition by British cloth weavers, but it results in you having to pay much higher prices for clothes and other goods. It seems that the U.S. government is becoming more and more "a government of the North, by the North, and for the North!" You are also worried because you sell lots of your raw cotton to England. The British government has threatened to place a tariff on American cotton if the tariff on cloth is not repealed. You have written your congressman to protest this unfair tax. You wonder if the South should even stay in the Union if the tariff is not repealed. You strongly support the move by South Carolina to "nullify" (declared illegal) the tariff in the state.
JOHN C. CALHOUN - You are President Andrew Jackson's Vice President. Being from the state of South Carolina, you realize how much Southerners oppose high tariff rates. Because Congress taxes goods imported from other countries, imported goods in America cost more. This only helps manufacturers in the North. You urge the Southern states to declare the new tariff law "null and void," or illegal, within their borders. You base your idea on the fact that states should not have to accept a national law that favors some states over others. Is not that the same reason that the Founding Fathers declared their independence from England: the King of England was favoring his Parliament in England over the legislative bodies in the American colonies? You are aware that such actions might destroy the Union, but you also realize how strongly your fellow Southerners feel about this issue. They have to stand up for what they believe in. You are very concerned when you hear South Carolina has "nullified" (declared illegal) the tariff law, refusing to collect any tariffs in the state. They have also threatened to secede (withdraw from the Union). You greatly fear President Jackson will take military action against your state if this happens.
ANDREW JACKSON - As President, you understand the point of view of Southerners who are strongly opposed to the tariff. You agree that the tariff favors the North over the South and this is unjust. You believe that tariffs should be reduced, but you are not nearly so radical in your views as your Vice President, John C. Calhoun, and some other Southerners. You believe that the national governemnt has at times favored wealthy Northern businessmen over other sections of the country. You also believe, however, that the primary responsibility of the President is to preserve the Union. When you hear that South Carolina has "nullified" (declared illegal) the tariff law and also threatened to secede (withdraw from the Union), you are furious. You believe that no state can choose which national laws it wants to obey.. You accuse South Carolina of treason. You order that federal forts in South Carolina be strengthened and send warships to the harbor in Charleston, South Carolina. Privately you threaten to hand John C. Calhoun. You are determined to take military action, if it is necessary to force South Carolina to accept the tariff law.
DANIEL WEBSTER - One of the nation's great speakers, you are a senator from Massachusetts. You favor a tariff on imported goods to protect the American manufacturers in your sate from the competition of larger English textile makers. The people in your state feel that they need this protection until they can grow large enough to compete with the English on their own. You understand that Southerners don't like the tariff because they feel it causes prices to rise on goods they must buy. However, you believe that they should be willing to accept a law passed by Congress and signed by the President. Most importantly, you believe that the Union must be preserved at all costs. In one of your most famous speeches in the Senate, you declare, "Liberty and Union, now and for ever, one and inseparable!" You are very concerned when you hear that South Carolina has "nullified" (declared illegal) the tariff law, refusing to enforce it in their state. Even more disturbing, they have threatened to secede, or withdraw from the Union. You support President Andrew Jackson as he threatened to take military action.
HENRY CLAY - Your nickname is "The Great Compromiser." Having served in Congress since the age of 20, you have a reputation as being moderate in your views. In your life, you will help the North and South compromise on several difficult issues. You are in favor of the tariff as a tax that can help America's manufacturing industry, but you realize that Southerners strongly oppose the tariff and are very angry about it. You believe that America can only be successful if it is united, so you are willing to compromise on the tariff. You believe one way to do this is to gradually lower the tariff rates to satisfy Southerners and give Northern manufacturers time to get ready for a lower tariff. You strongly believe the North and South should try to get along so that America can remain a strong nation. You urge compromise as a solution to the crisis.
NORTHERN FACTORY WORKER - Because you are employed in a factory in New York, you are very much in favor of a protective tariff, a tax on goods coming n from other countries. The tariff makes foreign goods more expensive to buy, and makes it easier for your factory to compete with the great textile makers in England. Without the tariff, consumers might purchase cheap foreign goods, rather than those produced in America. If that happened, your factory might be forced to close and you would no longer have a job. With the tariff, your boss can charge more for his goods and may thus pay you a higher salary. You have written your congressman to show your support for this very "pro-American" tax. You also support President Jackson as he threatens to take military action against South Carolina. The state has "nullified" (declared illegal) the tariff law, refusing to collect tariffs. Like President Jackson, you believe this is treason!
ROBERT Y. HAYNE - As a senator from South Carolina, you have been a strong supporter of Southern cotton planters. You actively oppose the protective tariff. You believe it protects Northern factory owners and causes Southerners to have to pay higher prices for everything they buy. The government is showing favoritism. Because the tariff is so unfair to Southerners, you believe the Southern states should "nullify" the tariff law, declaring it to be illegal and refusing to enforce it. If necessary, you believe the Southern states should secede (withdraw from the Union) if the national government is going to make laws that only favor half the country. You have made speeches discussing these matters in Congress, but the senators from the North do not seem to care. You also believe that if President Jackson tries to force South Carolina to enforce unfair tariff laws that only hurt them rather than help them, the state should take defend itself, even if that means war.
Week 22: Day 2: Indian Removal Act
How did the Industrial Revolution affect the Native Americans?
Objective: How did the Industrial Revolution affect the Native Americans?
Homework: Study for exam
1. Your family has been told you will have to move from your home because of your race. Everyone from your ethnic background must move to a small desert town in Arizona. In 5+ sentences, describe what you would think, feel, and/or do.
2. Lecture on Iroquois and Cherokee: Take 3+ notes on each. There's an excellent writing on the daily life of the Iroquois in the book The Social Fabric: American Life from 1607 to 1877: Volume I (Cary and Weinberg for Harper Collins) taken from "The Death and Rebirth of the Seneca by Anthony C. Wallace." I highly recommend checking it out of the library and reading it!
3. Watch last 5 minutes of video, "Native America - Removal Act"
4. Read packet on Sequoyah Adventure Tales of America: An Illustrated History of the United States, 1492-1877 (Signal Media Corporation) and answer questions along with a quick powerpoint slide lecture
5. UNIT EVALUATION A) What are 3 things you've learned during these units on our new nation and the American Industrial Revolution? B) What are 2 areas about which you still feel confused? C) List the one area from this unit about which you would have liked to study more.
6. Review game
What to Use for Teaching the Indian Removal Act
This is great for ESL or students with lower levels of reading.
Week 22: Day 3: Exam
What have I learned about our new nation and the American Industrial Revolution?
Objective: What have I learned about our new nation and the American Industrial Revolution?
Homework: Finish worksheet & get agenda signed
1. Cram/study for exam
3. Worksheet introducing next unit on Westward Expansion and the Roads to Freedom
Crash Course American History can be added if you have a few extra minutes in class
Previous Unit: Weeks 18-19: Our New Nation
- Weeks 18-19: Our New Nation
Our New Nation Lesson Plans for 8th Grade American History
Next Unit: Weeks 23-26: Westward Expansion & Roads to Freedom
- Weeks 23-26: Westward Expansion & Roads to Freedom
Westward Expansion & Roads to Freedom Lesson Plans for 8th Grade American History
My Lesson Plan Book Table of Contents
Weeks 1-2: First Week of School & Geography Lesson Plans for 8th Grade American History
Weeks 3-8: Thirteen Colonies Lesson Plans
Weeks 8-13: American Revolution Lesson Plans
Weeks 13-16: Constitution Lesson Plans
Week 17: American Literature Lesson Plans
Weeks 18-19: Our New Nation Lesson Plans
Weeks 20-22: Industrial Revolution Lesson Plans (this series of lessons)
Weeks 23-26: Westward Expansion & Roads to Freedom Lesson Plans
Weeks 26-30: Civil War Lesson Plans
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