suggested grade levels: 7-8
view Idaho achievement standards for this lesson
The Oregon Trail was used as a route for the early settlers migrating westward. This was not an organized migration. Roads were not built and no preparations for mass movement of settlers were made. The idea just grew and people started moving. Groups of people would decide to try their fortunes in the west. Parties would gather at places where they could join others who were ready to go and thus, wagon trains were organized. This lesson provides an overview of activities that teachers could do for helping their students to understand the Oregon Trail.
1. Students will be exposed to the Rocks, Rails, and Trails section Digital Atlas of Idaho.
2. Students will choose from a variety of activities concerning the Oregon Trail.
3. Students will learn about the importance of the Oregon Trial.
|poster paper||colored pencils|
Teachers should have the students read the pages in the Digital Atlas on the Oregon Trail: (Rocks, Rails & Trails Pg. 42-45) To get there: Click on Atlas Home, then on Rocks, Rails, & Trails and go to pages 42-45.
Make a diorama of the Oregon Trail
Construct a model of a wagon
Develop a journal of possible events and sites along the Oregon Trail.
Construct a map or chart of possible animal species found along The Oregon Trail. Include the types of biomes found along the trail. What kinds of animals could settlers use for food? What species would they have to watch out for? Chart the occurrence of water sources that settlers would find along the way.
Construct a map of the Oregon Trail in Idaho. This could be done individually, and/or a group could construct a large wall map for the classroom.
Students can develop a skit from their journals.
These are links to access the handouts and printable materials.
Rocks, Rails, & Trails
Geography: Geography Topics