Teacher: Sharon Purcell Washington, D. C. Dc public Schools Lesson Title

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Teacher: Sharon Purcell

Washington, D.C.

DC Public Schools
Lesson Title:

The First Lady’s Table

Grade 8 Course Title:

US History and Geography; Growth and Conflict


Civil War and Reconstruction 1830-1877

Content Standard: 8.11.4

Describe Lincoln’s

Presidency and his significant writings and speeches and their relationship to the Declaration of Independence (e.g., House Divided 1858 & The Emancipation 1863

Performance Standard:

Students summarize the causes and consequences of the Civil War

Essential Skills:

Students understand and distinguish cause, effect, sequence, and correlation in historical events, including the short-term cause or sparks rim long-term causes.

Essential Question?

Do events shape people or people shape events?


Describe African American involvement in the Union army including the 54th Regiment led by Colonel Robert Shaw.

Performance Standard:

Students analyze the multiple causes, key events, and complex consequences of the Civil War

Geographic Skills:

Students explain the causes and effects of settlement patterns, including the effect of rural-to-urban migrations.

A. Introduction:

Students are reminded of the unit focus, and standards. In How to write a letter, a previous lesson, students invited First Lady Michelle Obama to have tea and desert. A class photo was included in the invite.


B. Warm-up

Ask students to list as many words as possible found in the “Declaration of Independence”

(order of letters can

not be changed)

Share the lists. --Discuss definitions of the smaller words formed. The student with the longest list may win points, or the key to the sugar cabinet…

President Lincoln was known for his writings and speeches. Several are related to the Declaration of Independence. View

Imovie: 1st lady’s Table activity

Kathleen Jensen and Mr. Lincoln welcome




C. Objective:

Your mission as event planners is to design a table placemat illustrating events that affected the First Family and the country.

D. Materials:

Plates (paper, styrofoam, or picplates)

Markers, paper, pens, pencils, & colored pencils,

Lincoln’s Table (Donna D. McCreary)

Computers w/ Internet access

White House tour tickets

Laminate (placemat preservation)


E. Worksheets:

1. Abraham & Mary Lincoln Date Survey

2. Lincoln Comparison Graphic Organizer

3. Everyday Dinning Etiquette

4. Coat of Arms Placemat Directions & Rubric

5. How to write a letter.

F. New Information

View Imovie Part 2

Discuss how people meet today. Abe Lincoln met Mary Todd at a ball in Illinois. If they had not met The Sangamo Journal an Illinois newspaper was available. You are a Sangamo Journal Social Editor. Collect

F. New Information

information on the Abraham & Mary Lincoln Date Survey to aid in your match-making.

Search the Lincoln virtual web site to complete your survey.

G. Homework:

Organize the data on the Lincoln Comparison Graphic Organizer.

H. Guided and Independent Practice

In pairs students modify their homework and update Lincoln Comparison Graphic Organizer.

In groups of four, students discuss and record Abe and Mary’s similarities and differences on large

sheets of paper.

H. Guided and Independent Practice

Groups share merged information with the class.

View Imovie Part 3 With a focus on food, have students view Everyday Dinning Etiquette

1. Draw and label a table place setting.

2. Explain the placement of table place settings

3. Demonstrate and explain the rules of etiquette

Discuss how students and Mary Todd Lincoln’s dinning habits were similar and different. Given what you know about the First Lady and President Lincoln, create a Family Coat of Arms Placemat. Include:

(*) The emergence of Abraham Lincoln as a national political figure and

H. Guided and Independent Practice

(*) Choose Lincoln’s House Divided speech

H. or The Emancipation and give your interpretation for both Abe and Mary

(*) The role of Union African American troops in the war.

Use the Coat of Arms Placemat Directions and Rubric as a guide.

I. Summarization and Closure:

Students will share table setting placemats using the rubric and explain events that affected the first family and nation.

Students will answer one of the following Brief Constructive Responses, (BCR)
I. Summarization and Closure:

1. Describe one of Lincoln’s speeches. Compare and contrast the speech and The Declaration of Independence. Give evidence of your detailed examples.

2. Provide evidence that supports the idea that African American troop involvement in the Civil War was both an advantage and a disadvantage to the Union. What would you have decided? Why?

3. As Sangamo Journal Social Editor should Abe Lincoln and Mary Todd date? Justify your decision with evidence.

J. Assessments:

1. Analyze and connect Lincoln’s House Divided or Emancipation speech to his values and Declaration of Independence.

2. Illustration two roles of Union African

American troops in the Civil War.

3. Design a coat of arms place setting to represent influences on the first family’s decision making.

4. Demonstrate table etiquette.

5 Write and send persuasive letters to the White House.

6. Research and collect data on Lincoln via the Internet.

Special Education, ESL, and 504, Accommodations:

-Write often

-Assign a scribe

-Graphic Organizer

-Constant repetition

-Small groups

-Subdivide work

-Monitor organization, especially handouts

-Use of different learning styles: tactile,



-The Mary Todd Lincoln House dinning room


-PicPlates (if funded)

-Replacements, LTD. Greensboro/ Burlington, NC

-Lincoln's Table by Donna D.McCreary

-Historic Communities Classroom Games by Bobbie Kalman & Heather Levigne

-National Park Service Ranger Stephen Brown

-Todd House, Eric Thomason, courtesy of Blue Grass Trust for Historic Preservation

-Sangamo Journal Newspaper

-Buffalo Run Farm Indiana

-Elements of a Coat of Arms Wikipedia Free Encyclopedia

-Fleue-de-lis Designs

-Kathleen Jensen, Mrs. Lincoln and Mr. Lincoln

Notes to the teacher:

Vocabulary to be developed:

Still a work in progress!

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