Lesson Plan

African American History: Climbing the Wall

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This African American History: Climbing the Wall lesson plan also includes:

Imagine the challenge of trying to trace your family genealogy if no records were kept of births and deaths. Where would you look for information? What types of documents could provide you with the information you seek? History detectives tackle such a challenge as they follow Eduardo Pagan as he uses property records, wills, and other primary source documents to create a timeline for Willoby, an African American slave.

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CCSS: Designed
Instructional Ideas
  • Have individuals investigate the genealogy of their family using primary source documents
Classroom Considerations
  • After 1870, the Census recorded the first and last names of former slaves
  • The first lesson in a three-part unit
  • The activity models the process historians use to research people and events
  • None