This lesson has been designed for the GCSE Edexcel American West module. All outcomes are linked with Paper Two's Assessment Objectives 1 & 2.
The focus of this lesson is to build pupils knowledge regarding the early settlements such as mining towns in the west and the problems of lawlessness.
Pupils begin with an inquiry of the problems associated with settling on and near the plains. They will then complete a card sort activity matching the problems with the solutions.
Pupils then take part in a mix-pair-share activity to help develop their understanding of some key definitions (US Marshal. sheriff, Posse, vigilante).
The main tack involves studying the problems of lawlessness in these early settlements. Pupils conduct a murder mystery investigation, examining clues to determine the cause of death.
this activity will cover topics such as gangs & racism, claim jumping and vigilantes.
Pupils can then use the information to complete a worksheet to build their contextual knowledge.
Videos are embedded and links and further advice can be found within the description of the presentation. There is enough material here to last more than one lesson depending how thorough you wish to be. You may need the Edexcel GCSE 1-9 American West Text Book to support part of this lesson if you wish.