Wild West Careers: Homesteaders and Wagon Trains
This product contains 6 one-page reading passages covering Homesteaders and the Emigrant Trails, Covered Wagons, Wagon Trains, Sod Homes, the Donner Party and more. This product is also perfect for SUBSTITUTE TEACHERS, enrichment learning, homeschool or co-ops! The reading passages are great for CLOSE READING with any non-fiction graphic organizer (not included). THIS LESSON INCLUDES READING PASSAGES, ACTIVITIES, REVIEW GAME, WORKSHEET AND TEACHER’S KEY.

At the beginning of the 1800s, America doubled its size when the United States purchased the Louisiana Territory from France. But, buying land alone doesn’t make a country grow: the land needs people. How does a government build a population? In this lesson, students will learn about the Homestead Act and the pioneers who headed west to help grow America!

Reading Passages*
6 one-page reading passages covering the following topics:

• Increasing the Population!
• Sod Homes
• Homesteaders and the Emigrant Trails
• Homesteaders and Covered Wagons
• Wagon Trains
• Tragedy on the Journey: The Donner Party

This product includes the following classroom activities:

 Create an Ad for Free Land
 Complete Job Application: Homesteader
 Plan a Pioneer’s Trip
 How Big is a Covered Wagon?
 Homesteaders: Review Worksheet
 Review Game – True/False
 Make a Sod House
 Coloring Page – Pioneers Heading West
 Moving: Then and Now
 Primary Source Image: Examine a Sod House
 Homestead Activity Suggestions
 Writing Prompt

This is one lesson in a series of “Wild, Wild West Careers Lesson Plans.” Each of the Wild, Wild West Careers lesson plans covers the career and information about the time period as it relates to the career. The series covers the United States during the 1800s, including events that contributed to Western Expansion. Each lesson can also be used individually.

*These Reading Passages also appear in my other Wild West History Products
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  • Homesteaders-Lesson.pdf

About this resource


Created: Jul 22, 2016

Updated: Feb 22, 2018

Lesson Plan

pdf, 14 MB


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