The Emancipation Proclamation and the Thirteenth Amendment

How did the Emancipation Proclamation lead to the Thirteenth Amendment? Middle schoolers analyze primary source documents including the text of the Emancipation Proclamation, political cartoons, photographs, and prints to understand the differences in public opinion about the proclamation. They then focus on the limitations in the proclamation and how these limitations lead to the Thirteenth Amendment.

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CCSS: Adaptable
Instructional Ideas
  • Introduce class members to the analysis tool by modeling how to use it to analyze several recent political cartoons
  • After a reading of the proclamation, have pairs respond to the provided questions before conducting a full-class discussion
Classroom Considerations
  • The lesson assumes class members have experience analyzing primary source documents
  • The lesson could be included as a part of a study of Black History Month
  • The four-page packet includes a step-by-step plan, a teachers guide for analyzing photographs, prints, and cartoons, worksheets, links to all required primary source materials, a rubric for the writing assignment, and extensions
  • None