The Homestead Act, Cattle Kingdom, Transcontinental Railroad, Dawes Act
Gilded Age unit contains 4 learning experiences.
Learning Experiences (Lessons) in Gilded Age Each learning experience takes about 45 minutes to teach in the device-enabled classroom.
The Homestead Act and the Closing of the Frontier
Students learn about the Homestead Act of 1862 and how the new law affected western migration. Then they learn about the challenges that farmers faced and the alliances they established to overcome these challenges. Finally, students analyze how the Homestead Act contributed to the closing of the western frontier.
Students learn about the growth of the cattle industry following the Civil War. They identify some of the difficulties involved in cattle drives, and then they examine the growth of cow towns. Finally, they reflect on how the cattle industry contributed to westward expansion.
The Transcontinental Railroad
Students learn about the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad and analyze the effect it had on the American West and the entire country’s economy. Then they describe some of the negative results of the railway system construction in the United States.
Policies Towards American Indians
Students learn about the impact of the western expansion of white settlers onto American Indian land. They examine U.S. policies toward American Indians, including the Dawes Act and the Carlisle Indian School. Finally, students develop their own policy towards the American Indians in the historical context of western expansion.