U.S. Civil War Lesson Plans & Classroom Activities

Reviewed Resources for Students and teachers


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The Civil War

General resources

Civil War Lesson Plans

Civil War By State

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Please note that with regard to lesson plans dealing with anthropology, archaeology, indigenous people, ancient civilizations, history, etc, there may be some cross-over and blurring of lines between the topics.  For example, a lesson plan dealing with archaeology is automatically dealing with an anthropological subject.  A lesson plan dealing with indigenous people is also automatically dealing with anthropology and any of them may, or may not, be dealing with history or ancient civilizations.  While every attempt will be made to keep the topic lines as 'clean' as possible, be aware this may not always be possible.

Appropriate grade or age levels are included with the lesson plans.

The number of lesson plans available online for this topic is enormous.  This site can not and does not index all lesson resources relating to the Civil War. That would be impossible, as sites appear and disappear with astonishing rapidity.  The following provides some idea of what is available and will hopefully be a good starting point.


*While many lesson plan sites have a subscription fee or otherwise sell their lesson plans (that is an additional feature of some of the sites found here)  all lesson plans and collections of lesson plans listed here are free.


To Civil War General Resources 

African-American Civil War Soldiers Lesson Plan __ "Students will recognize the role of African-American soldiers in the Civil War."  Goals, procedure and materials. - From civilwar.org - http://www.civilwar.org/education/teachers/lesson-plans/african-american-soldiers-lesson-plan/fighting-for-african-american.html

Before Brother Fought Brother: Life in the North and South 1847-1861__ This the introduction and first in a series of lesson plans with this title as the heading.  You will find goals, procedure, materials and more. - From National Endowment for the Humanities - http://edsitement.neh.gov/view_lesson_plan.asp?id=484

The Civil War __ Social Studies Quizzes, Reading Lesson, Activities, more - From k12tn.net - http://www.mce.k12tn.net/civil_war/civil_war.htm

Civil War 3-D Photography Lesson Plan __ "Students will learn how to utilize primary sources to study an historic event."  Goals, procedure and materials. - From Civil War Trust - http://www.civilwar.org/education/teachers/lesson-plans/civil-war-photography-as-a-primary-source/civil-war-photography.html  

The Civil War . In the Classroom . Classroom Activities . Lesson Plans __ You will find a small but well done collection of Civil War lesson plans and resources.  This particular page opens with a lesson plan about 'Civil War Letters.' - From pbs.org - http://www.pbs.org/civilwar/classroom/lesson_letters.html

Civil War Leaders - Social Studies Lesson Plan, Thematic Unit __  Lesson plan about Civil War leaders in which each student specializes in research about the leader they choose. Goals, procedure and materials. - From lessonplanspage.com - http://www.lessonplanspage.com/SSArtUSCivilWarLeaders5.htm

Civil War Lesson Plan__ "When requested, the student will describe events leading to the Civil War that will include at least 3 of the 6 events covered as well as the impact those events had on the northern and southern societies."  Goals, procedure and materials needed. - From adprima.com - http://www.adprima.com/social.htm 


Civil War Lesson Plans__ Here are links to 19 Civil War lesson plans and activities. - From teach-nology.com - http://www.teach-nology.com/teachers/lesson_plans/history/us_history/civilwar/

Civil War Lesson Plans __ A large collection of more than 50 free Civil War lesson plans from elementary grades through high school. - From civilwar.org - http://www.civilwar.org/education/teachers/lesson-plans/

Civil War lesson plans __ You will find 40+ free Civil War lesson plans from National Endowment for the Humanities. - From neh.gov - http://edsitement.neh.gov/search?query=civil+war

Civil War Lesson Plans __ Small collection of lesson plans.  Goals, procedures and materials. - From myfreshplans.com / Rebecca Haden - http://www.myfreshplans.com/2011-03/civil-war-lesson-plans/     

Civil War Lesson Plans__ Here are links to 13 Civil War lesson plans and activities. - From lessonplancentral.com - http://lessonplancentral.com/lessons/Social_Studies/US_History/Civil_War/ 

Civil War lesson plans for elementary school teachers in grades K-6...__Several lessons about many aspects of the Civil War and its history.  Goals, procedure and needed materials. - From proteacher.com - http://www.proteacher.com/090053.shtml 

Civil War Lesson Plan Ideas __ You will find a list of lesson plans about the American Civil War.  Goals, procedure and materials needed. - From theteachersguide.com - http://www.theteachersguide.com/Civilwarlessons.html 

Civil War Lesson Plans And Activities __ Here is a list of lesson plans and classroom activities about the Civil War.  Goals, procedure and materials needed. - From educationworld.com - http://www.educationworld.com/a_lesson/lesson/lesson186.shtml

Civil War Lesson Plans: Elementary __ A collection of a couple dozen lesson plans from the Civil War Trust - From civilwar.org - http://www.civilwar.org/education/teachers/curriculum/civil-war-curriculum/elementary/lesson-plans-elementary.html

Civil War Lesson Plans: High School __ A collection of a couple dozen lessons from the Civil War Trust - From civilwar.org - http://www.civilwar.org/education/teachers/curriculum/civil-war-curriculum/high-school/lesson-plans-high-school.html

Civil War Lesson Plans: Middle School __ A collection of a couple dozen lessons from The Civil War Trust. Goals and procedures - From civilwar.org - http://www.civilwar.org/education/teachers/curriculum/civil-war-curriculum/middle-school/lesson-plans-middle.html  

Civil War: Lesson Plans: Slavery and the Legal Status of Free Blacks__ "In this lesson plan, students will read actual arguments regarding the status of free blacks in Illinois and slavery in the United States more generally. In order to more effectively interpret the materials (which may be offensive to some readers), students should be offered a perspective from which to read such debates."  You will find resources, goals, procedure and needed materials. - From Illinois During the Civil War Digitization Project - http://dig.lib.niu.edu/civilwar/teachers/afam1.html

The Civil War: A Nation Divided | Free Lesson Plans __ Lesson plan, glossary and resources.  Goals, procedure and materials needed. - From discoveryeducation.com - http://www.discoveryeducation.com/teachers/free-lesson-plans/the-civil-war-a-nation-divided.cfm


Civil War Recipes__ "Students prepare foods, including hardtack, that were among the staples of a Civil War soldier's diet."  Goals, procedure and materials needed. - From educationworld.com - http://www.educationworld.com/a_lesson/00-2/lp2001.shtml

Civil War Social Studies Lesson Plan, Thematic Unit __ A Civil War based language arts lesson plan.  Goals, procedure and materials. - From lessonplanspage.com - http://www.lessonplanspage.com/SSLAInDepthCivilWarPlan5.htm

Civil War Technology Lesson Plans __ A small collection of Civil War lesson plans. - From myfreshplans.com / Rebecca Haden - http://www.myfreshplans.com/2011-03/civil-war-technology-lesson-plans/  

Civil War (War Between the States) - FREE American History Lesson Plans __ A good collection of Civil War lesson plans and resources. - From mrdonn.org - http://americanhistory.mrdonn.org/civilwar.html  

Lesson Plan: The Civil War __ "As a result of completing this unit, students will be able to...* discuss some of the social, political, and personal issues that Americans confronted during the Civil War era. * use the Internet to locate resources related to the Civil War and incorporate information from these resources into their own writing. * define historical fiction and identify some of the techniques writers use to create good historical fiction.* discuss the central issues of the Civil War from a variety of different perspectives. * share their personal reactions to what they have learned in both small-group and whole-class discussions."  Goals, procedure and materials needed. - From smplanet.com - http://www.smplanet.com/civilwar/civilwar.html

Lesson Plans - The Civil War - Themed Resources - For Teachers (Library of Congress) __ A collection of half dozen lesson plans.  Goals and procedures - From loc.gov - http://www.loc.gov/teachers/classroommaterials/themes/civil-war/lessonplans.html


Make a Civil War Flag__ "Make Civil War flags with your students. Talk about the importance of flags and what they represented to the soldiers during the Civil War. Discuss the role of color guards. What do flags represent to students today?"  Goals, procedure and needed materials. - from michigan.gov - http://www.michigan.gov/dnr/0,1607,7-153-54463_19268_20778-51826--,00.html

Role Playing the Civil War__ The purpose of this plan is to provide a frame for the students to use in evaluating both points of view in the Civil War.  Goals, procedure and materials needed. - From Carol Strickler - http://tinyurl.com/c85s4

The Teacher's Guide Civil War Battles Page  __ Collection of Civil War lesson plans. - From theteachersguide.com - http://www.theteachersguide.com/Civilwar.html   

Teaching with Historic Places -- Civil War Lesson Plans __ You will find several lesson plans and activities with goals, procedure and more. - From National Park Service - http://www.cr.nps.gov/nr/twhp/civwar00.htm


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