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Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness
Lesson Plans




Teacher Created "Opening Up the Textbook" Lessons, 2012-13


Gary Abolafia, Rosa Parks

Jenny Ames, Women's Suffrage

Maria Avery, 19th and 20th Century Immigrant Experience

Monica Blackman, Native American Depictions

Joyce Calarco, The Amistad Incident

Monica Contessa, The Rape of Nanking

Saul Fussiner, Indian Boarding Schools

Gail Gallo, Women During the Civil War

Mike Gozzo, Eisenhower and Civil Rights

Kristin Harvey, Ku Klux Klan

David Hayes, Battle of Little Bighorn

Sandra Kocan, Japanese Internment

Susan Kopecki, Irish Immigrants (part 1) | Irish Immigrants (part 2)

Dawn Kountz, Civil Rights and WWII

Bernice Montagna, Chinese Exclusion Act

Bevan Moore, John Brown

Joyce Moore, Zoot Suits

Lorraine Morrissey, Japanese Internment

Pat Pendl, Cherokee Removal

Frank Porto, Chinese Discrimination 19th Century California

Niki Reid, Reconstruction

Arthur Sides, Women's Suffrage

Shanequa Sturgis-Nash, Rosa Parks

John Tenney, Zoot Suit Riots


Teacher Created Structured Academic Controversies, 2011-12


Maria Avery, Antebellum Woman's Rights

Karen Beitler, Rachel Carson

Monica Blackman-Smith, Woman's Rights

Monica Contessa, 17th and 18th Century Women

John Buell, Was Slavery Worse than Mill Work

Saul Fussiner, Colonial Women

Gail Gallo, Salem Witchcraft

Mike Gozzo, Women in Military

Kristen Harvey, Women's Suffrage

Susan Kopecki, Westward Expansion

Lorraine Morrissey, Lowell Women

Bernice Montagna, Women's Antislavery Movement

Phil Montanaro, Moral Reform and Prostitution

Sandra Montanaro, Moral Reform and Temperance Movement

Bevan Moore, Women in Factory Work

Joyce Moore, The Women Temperance Movement

Shanequa Nash, Equality for Women

Pat Pendl, Triangle Fire

Frank Porto, Textile Mills

Niki Reid, Women in WWII

Linda Romano, Equal Rights Amendment


Teacher Created Lesson Plans, 2010-11


Maria Avery, Comparing Mass Social Movements

Monica Blackman-Smith, Civil Rights Narratives

Ann Bodurtha, The Equal Rights Amendment: Why Did It Fail, and Is It Necessary, or Not?

James Brochin, Defending individual freedom during The McCarthy Era

Monica Contessa, Government Spending and New Deal Programs

Saul Fussiner, The American Labor Unions in History and Today

Gail Gallo, Civil Rights

Robert Gibson, W. E. B. Du Bois, "Close Ranks" and African American Participation in World War I

Gretchen Gurr, Legacy of FDR's New Deals

Kristin Harvey, Freedom Songs and the Civil Rights Movement

Haywoodene Hines, Girl Power-Movements Toward Equality

Kirsten Hopes-McFadden, Public Transportation and the Civil Rights Movement

Madeleine Janover, Second Wave of Feminism

Susan Kopeci, Art of the New Deal

Sandra Montanaro, Perspectives in History

James Osborne, World War I, The Introduction of the Horrors of War in the Post Industrial Age

Pat Pendl, American History Reflected through Pop Culture

Frank Porto, Protesting the Vietnam War: Marches, Music and Art

Nikilia Reid, What's Your Ruling?

Kevin Staton, Scheduling for Armageddon: JFK and the Cuban Missile Crisis

Jeremy Stone, U.S. Intervention in WWI



Teacher Created Lesson Plans, 2009-10


Jennifer Gilliam Anderson, The Civil War through Picture Books

Maria Avery, Fort Negro: Freedom in Florida

Orah Bilmes, Memorializing Connecticut's Role in the History of Slavery

Monica Blackman-Smith, America's Journey to Civil War

James P. Brochin, Violent Resistance to Slavery: Denmark Vesey, Gabriel Prosser, Nat Turner, and John Brown

John Buell, 1850s: Road to Disunion

Peter Chesnes, Why did reconstruction fail

Monica P. Contessa, Connecticut Complicity in Slavery

P. Conway, Title Witness to a Slave Auction

Saul Fussiner, Slavery and Emancipation

Gail Gallo, The Emancipation Proclamation: Three Different Viewpoints

Robert A. Gibson, Was Slavery the Fundamental Cause of the American Civil War?

Shirley Goldberg, The Tapestry of a Divided Nation in 1862

Mike Gozzo, Slavery

Gretchen Gurr, A Gran Maafa: An Interactive Exploration of the Slave Trade

Kristin Harvey, The Emancipation Proclamation Before and After

Haywoodene Hines, "The Many Faces of Harriett"

Susan S. Kopecki, Clay Poetry Plate

Bernice Montagna, In the Pursuit of Freedom | Register for Freedman Bureau

Phil Montanaro, The 54th Massachusetts Infantry

Sandi Montanaro, New York Civil War Draft Riots (1863)

Joyce Moore, Northern complicity in the slave trade and/ or slavery

Bob Osborne, Sugar Plantations in the Caribbean, Where Slavery and the Plantation System Entered the New World

J'aime Ottaviano, Historical Fiction Narrative of an African American during the Jim Crow Era

Patricia-Ann Pendl, Six Women ... On the Institution of Slavery - How did they decide?

Frank Porto, "Cotton's Journey"

Nikilia Reid, Historically Black Colleges

Linda Romano, To Be a Slave/ The North and Slavery

Paul Schneider, Title The American Abolitionists: An Intergenerational UInderstanding

M. Susan Simpson, Five Themes of Geography and the southeastern slave states

Kevin Staton, Analyzing the true nature of the Black Confederate "Soldier"

Jeremy Stone, Business & Ethics Shanequa Sturgis Nash, History Film Critic


Teacher Created Lesson Plans, 2008-09


Christopher Aceto, Gouverneur Who?

Sharon Bette, The American Revolution

John Buell, Decisions of the Constitutional Convention

Peter Chesnes, "Hey did you go to Wassamatta U?" or The Declaration of Independence: what are they complaining about? Parts 2 | 3 | 4 | 5

Jeff Crosson, An American Colonial Dilemma

Saul Fussiner, New England Town Meeting Newspaper

Robert A. Gibson, The United States Constitution and Slavery

Shirley Goldberg, What did "Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness" mean to John Ford: A Study of an Indentured Servant in Colonial Times Using Primary Documents

Mike Gozzo, American Revolution

Gretchen M. Gurr, Roots of Women's Rights Advocacy: Pre and Post Revolutionary War Eras

Haywoodene Hines, I Am Woman, Hear Me Roar

Madeleine Janover, Defining America's Form of Democracy, Charts

J'aime Jenson-Guerrero, Modified Document-Based Question

Linda Louison, Remembering and Appreciating a local hero: Ebenezer D. Bassett (1833-1908)

Bevan Moore, Defining America: The Preamble of the Constitution as a lens to view the changing definition of American-ness

Joyce Moore, Massachusetts Slave Emancipation

Linda-Marie C. Romano, Slavery and Empire 1440-1770

Carroll Ryan, The Journey of Slaves Toward Freedom

Kevin Staton, Nineteenth Century Local Governance in New England

Jeremey Stone, Environmental Legacies of the New England Puritans


The following are lesson plans created by teachers in the third year of the ACES/GLC TAH Grant "Slavery and Freedom in American History and Memory."


Peter Bizier, 20th Century Civil Rights Movement Documentary: A Multimedia Project

Diana Blythe, The Rise and fall of the Jim Crow Era and Its Impact on African American South 1870's-1960's

Peter Chesnes, American Civil Rights Tour

Jeff Crosson, Education; the Postbellum Period and Freemen.

Kathryn M. Davis, Diverse Psychological Effects of the Civil Rights Movement

Amy DeZenzo, A Trip on the Underground Railroad

Matt Dooley, The Role of Affirmative Action in the Civil Rights movement

Martha Giammatteo, Making Connections: " I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings" as Response

Shirley Goldberg, Civil Rights and Segregation

Mike Gozzo, Title: Civil Rights Movement

Gretchen Gurr, Accommodation or Activism

Stephanie Hairel-Francis, And a Child Shall Lead Them . . . The Role of Children and Youth in the Civil Rights Movement from the 1950s-1960s. (Brown v. Board of Education)

Haywoodene Hines, The Education Element of the Harlem Renaissance and Its Impact on The New Negro

J'aime Jenson-Guerrero, American Civil Rights Movement Menu

Dennis Killian, Understanding the music of the civil rights movement

Alyce Loesch, After Reconstruction: When is the Struggle Over? 1880-1948

Emily McAdam, The Movement Beyond Martin

Lynne McPeake, Harlem Renaissance

Al Meadows, Blacks during Reconstruction

Bevan Moore, Busting the myth of MLK Jr.

Joyce Moore, African American History Scavenger Hunt

Phil Montanaro, Freedom Riders

Sandee Montanaro, Perspectives in History

Elaine Muldowney, Langston Hughes and the Harlem Renaissance

Lynn Roach, 9th Grade Coached Project: Levels of Freedom

Susan Rosenstein, The Gullah People of the Sea Islands

Barbara Scioscia-Reed, Land, Liberty, and the Struggle for the American Dream: Historical Perspectives in Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry & "I Have a Dream" Speech

James Seldner, Slavery: Past, Present, and Future

Kevin Staton, Religious Conflict on the issue of Slavery/Abolition

Frank Steponaitis, Five Roads to Topeka, Kansas

Elizabeth Titus, The Civil Rights Struggle in a Jacob Lawrence style Series