Slave Plantations Teacher Resources
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Through Their Eyes: Perspectives on Slavery
Students write a personal account of slavery seen from the eyes of a slave trader, a slave plantation owner, a fugitive slave, or a working slave.
Through Their Eyes: Perspectives on Slavery
Students examine different perspectives of slavery. They write a personal account of slavery as a slave trader, a plantation owner, and fugitives and working slaves. They role-play these roles for the class.
Lunsford Lane: A slave in North Carolina who buys his freedom
“To break the bonds of slavery opens up at once both earth and heaven. Neither can be truly seen by us while we are slaves.” Class members read excerpts from the memoir, Narrative of Lunsford Lane, to gain understanding of the details of the life of a slave who worked in the city of Raleigh rather than as a field hand. Using the provided question sheet, class members track Lane’s early life, his work, his marriage, and the process he followed to purchase his freedom. Designed to provide learners with “an understanding that slaves could have a variety of jobs and roles,” the exercise will also lead learners to examine their assumptions about slavery, slaves, and slave holders.
Plantation life in the 1840s: A slave's description
The Solomon Northrup Narrative provides class members a chance to investigate plantation life from the point of view of a slave. A provided guided-reading worksheet encourages readers to think deeply about the institution of slavery, the daily life of a slave, and the abolitionist movement as they read the story of a free black man who was kidnapped and sold into slavery. Links to Northrup’s story and other slave narratives are provided.
The Role of African Slaves on South Carolina Rice Plantations
Fourth graders investigate the role of African American slaves in rice plantations. In this slave life lesson, 4th graders discuss the products produced in the 13 colonies. Students discuss the importance of rice to South Carolina's economy. Students complete a Venn Diagram, two group projects, write a paragraph about life during the period, and complete a think-pair-share activity.
Who Wants to be a Millionaire: Plantation Life
What was plantation life like in the Deep South? If your pupils can recall a few tidbits from lecture, they're sure to win this fun review game. They answer 15 questions all related to southern life, plantation owners, and slavery.
Interview with a Slave Webquest
This is a great way to expose your class to primary source documents as they learn about the American slave experience. After a brief introduction to the topic, students visit the Library of Congress American Memory site to listen to an interview with one of several former slaves. As they listen, students record answers to the guiding questions. Ultimately, they have to write a newspaper article that describes the slave's experience as accurately as possible.
How African Slaves Arrived In America
Students explore US history by completing an ancestry activity. In this slavery lesson, students research Internet sites and identify the slave trade routes used several hundred years ago. Students create a timeline based on African American slavery and read several biographies of former slaves.
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass: An American Slave by Frederick Douglass
For this online interactive reading comprehension worksheet, learners respond to 13 multiple choice questions about Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass: An American Slave. Students may submit their answers to be scored.
Slave Culture during the Age of Jackson
Students consider slave culture during the time of Andrew Jackson. In this lesson on slavery, students watch a PowerPoint presentation, take notes, then analyze an extensive list of primary sources in order to understand what and how slave culture and was communicated and preserved.
Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl - Essay Questions
In this literature worksheet, students respond to 31 short answer and essay questions about Harriet Jacobs's Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl. Students may also link to an online interactive quiz on the novel at the bottom of the page.
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass by Frederick Douglass
Imagine what it was like to be a slave in the United States in 1845. Eighth graders are given an opportunity to experience life from the point of view of Frederick Douglass as they read and discuss an annotated passage from Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave, Written by Himself. Guided by a series of text-dependent questions, class members conduct a close reading of the passage, and consider how Douglass’ use of language creates the emotional impact of the excerpt. The carefully designed packet includes directions for teachers, guiding questions for students, suggested activities, and writing prompts that ask participants to craft an emotional response to the passage.
Jacob Lawrence's Freedom Trail
Students read excerpts of autobiographies from Frederick Douglass and Harriet Tubman. After listening to excerpts of an oral reading of Frederick Douglass' book, they discuss the ways African Americans were treated on plantations. Individually, they compare and contrast their own lives to Douglass and view slides of Lawrence's paintings. To end the lesson, they identify the route of the Freedom Trail and role-play master and slave relationships.
Factory vs. Plantation in the North and South
Middle schoolers discuss and compare life in the South and life in the North during the American civil War. They compare factory management rules to plantation management rules during that period. A variety of assessment activities are completed.
In His Footsteps: Former Slave George Gilmore at Montpelier
Students explore the life of former slave George Gilmore. For this US History lesson, students analyze primary source documents and use data from these selections to inform the decision making process. Students demonstrate reasoning skills to explain their response to a controversial situation.
Perspective on the Slave Narrative
Students examine narratives of two slaves: iam W. Brown and Frederick Douglas. They produce an essay explaining how Brown's narrative challenged the prejudices of readers in his own time and how it challenges prejudices today.
"We Came to Free the Slaves": John Brown on Trial
Students explore the plight of John Brown to fight slavery. In this Brown vs. Board of Education lesson, students listen to a lecture regarding Brown's work to free slaves through rebellion. Students participate in classroom discussion regarding 3 provided questions.
Slave Lifeon George Washington’s Mount Vernon Plantation
Eleventh graders investigate slave life on the Mount Vernon Plantation. For this slavery lesson, 11th graders examine photographs of and documents about George Washington's home as they participate in classroom station activities. Students design brochures about slave life on the plantation.
Writing in First Person about the Atlantic Slave Trade Lesson Plan
Young scholars investigate the Atlantic slave trade. In this slavery activity, students watch "Slavery, Society, and Apartheid," as well as "Slave Ship." Young scholars discuss the information presented in the videos, especially St. John's Revolt. Students write creative pieces from the perspectives of those involved in the revolt.
Plantation Life in the 1840s: A Slave's Description
Students use a primary source to investigate plantation life from a slave's perspective. This first-hand account of a slave's experience should foster discussions about the slave trade and abolitionist movement within the United States in the 1800s.