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About this Lesson

 
This lesson is based on the National Register of Historic Places registration files, “Baltimore & Ohio Transportation Museum and Mount Clare Station,” “Thomas Viaduct, Baltimore & Ohio Railroad,” “Carrollton Viaduct,” “Ellicott City Station,” and other source materials on the development of 19thcentury transportation. TwHP is sponsored, in part, by the Cultural Resources Training Initiative and Parks as Classrooms programs of the National Park Service. This lesson is one in a series that brings the important stories of historic places into the classrooms across the country.
 
Where it fits into the curriculum
Topics: This lesson is useful for units aimed at teaching about the process of westward expansion and industrialization during the 19th century. Also, parts of the lesson will engage students in arithmetic calculations related to railroad operations. This will enable teachers to “partner” this social studies activity with aspects of their math curriculum. The readings and other exercises are designed to reinforce student skills in the areas of critical thinking, interpretation, and observation related to the history of transportation and technology.
Time Period: 19th century
 
Relevant United States History Standards
 
Grades K-4
Topic One: Living and Working Together in Families and Communities, Now and Long Ago
Standard 2A: The student understands the history of his or her local community.
Standard 2B: The student understands how communities in North America varied long ago.
Topic Two: The History of the Students' Own State or Region 
Standard 3D: The student understands the interactions among all these groups throughout the history of his or her state.
Standard 3E: The student understands the ideas that were significant in the development of the state and that helped to forge its unique identity.
Topic Four: The History of Many Cultures Around the World
Standard 8B: The student understands the changes in transportation and their effects.
 
Grades 5-12
Era 4: Expansion and Reform (1801-1861)
STANDARD 2: How the industrial revolution, increasing immigration, the rapid expansion of slavery, and the westward movement changed the lives of Americans and led toward regional tensions.
Standard 2A: The student understands how the factory system and the transportation and market revolutions shaped regional patterns of economic development. 
 
Relevant Maryland Voluntary State Curriculum Standards for Social Studies
 
Grade 3
Standard 3.0 Geography: Students will use geographic concepts and processes to  to examine the role of culture, technology, and the environment in the location and distribution of human activities and spatial connections throughout time.
3.0A. Using Geographic Tools
Indicator 1. Use geographic tools to locate and construct meaning about places on Earth
Objective a. Describe the purposes of a variety of maps and atlases, such as transportation maps, physical maps, and political maps
Objective c. Identify the location of communities, major cities in Maryland, United States and the world using a globe, maps, and atlases
3.0B. Geographic Characteristics of Places and Regions
Indicator 1. Compare places and regions around the world using geographic characteristics
Objective b. Identify natural/physical and human-made features of places and regions
Objective d. Describe how geographic characteristics of places and regions change over time and influence the way people live and work
3.0C. Movement of People, Goods and Ideas
Indicator 1. Describe how transportation and communication networks link places through the movement of people, goods, and ideas
Objective a. Explain how transportation and communication networks connect places, people, and ideas
Objective b. Identify reasons for the movement of people from one community or region to another
3.0D. Modifying and Adapting to the Environment
Indicator 1. Explain how people modify, protect and adapt to their environment
Objective a. Describe how people in a community modify their environment to meet changing needs for transportation, shelter and making a living
 
Standard 4.0 Economics: Students will  develop economic reasoning to understand the historical development and current status of economic principles, institutions, and processes needed to be effective citizens, consumers, and workers participating in local communities, the nation, and the world.
4.0A. Scarcity and Economic Decision-making
Indicator 1. Explain that people must make choices because resources are limited relative to unlimited wants for goods and services
Objective a. Explain why people must make economic choices
Indicator 3. Examine how technology affects the way people, live, work, and play
Objective a. Describe how changes in technology have affected the lives of consumers, such as UPC bar codes, and online shopping
Objective b. Describe how changes in technology have affected lives of producers, such as robot-powered assembly lines
 
Standard 5.0 History: Students will  Examine significant ideas, beliefs, and themes; organize patterns and events; and analyze how individuals and societies have changed over time in Maryland, the United States and around the world.
5.0A. Individuals and Societies Change Over Time
Indicator 2. Investigate how people lived in the past using a variety of sources
Objective a. Collect and examine information about people, places, or events of the past using pictures, photographs, maps, audio or visual tapes, and or documents
 
Grade 4
Standard 3.0 Geography: Students will use geographic concepts and processes to examine the role of culture, technology, and the environment in the location and distribution of human activities and spatial connections throughout time.
3.0A. Using Geographic Tools
Indicator 1. Use geographic tools to locate places and describe the human and physical characteristics of those places
Objective a. Construct and interpret a variety of maps using map elements
Objective b.  Use photographs, maps, charts, graphs, and atlases to describe geographic characteristics of Maryland/United States
Objective d. Identify and locate natural/physical features and human-made features of the United States
3.0B.Geographic Characteristics of Places and Regions
Indicator 1. Describe similarities and differences of regions by using geographic characteristics
Objective b. Compare human characteristics of different places and regions of Maryland the United States, including human-made features, language, religions, political systems, economic activity, and population distribution
Objective c. Describe how geographic characteristics of a place or region change over time and affect the way people live and work
3.0C. Movement of People, Goods and Ideas
Indicator 1. Describe and analyze population growth, migration, and settlement patterns in Maryland and regions of the United States
Objective a. Explain how geographic characteristics influenced settlement patterns in Maryland and the United States
Objective b. Explain how changes in transportation and communication led to the growth and development of towns and cities in Maryland and United States
Objective d. Describe the transportation and communication networks for the movement of people, goods, and ideas to, from and within Maryland such as Bay Bridge, National Road, B & O Railroad, the Port of Baltimore, and C & O Canal
Objective e. Identify the reasons for the movement of peoples to, from, and within Maryland and the United States
 
Standard 4.0 Economics: Students will develop economic reasoning to understand the historical development and current status of economic principles, institutions, and processes needed to be effective citizens, consumers, and workers participating in local communities, the nation, and the world.
4.0A. Scarcity and Economic Decision-making
Indicator 3. Examine how technological changes have affected production and consumption in Maryland
Objective b. Describe how entrepreneurship inspired technological changes and affected business productivity
4.0B. Economic Systems and the Role of the Government in the Economy
Indicator 1. Describe the types of economic systems in Maryland
Objective b. Give examples of the kinds of goods and services produced in Maryland during different historical periods
 
Standard 5.0 History: Students will examine significant ideas, beliefs, and themes; organize patterns and events; and analyze how individuals and societies have changed over time in Maryland and the United States.
5.0C. Conflict between Ideas and Institutions
Indicator 2. Explain the political, cultural, economic and social changes in Maryland during the early 1800s
Objective b. Describe the importance of changes in industry, transportation, education, rights and freedoms in Maryland, such as roads and canals, slavery, B&O railroad, the National Road, immigration, public schools, and religious freedoms
 
Grade 5
Standard 3.0 Geography: Students will use geographic concepts and processes to examine the role of culture, technology, and the environment in the location and distribution of human activities and spatial connections throughout time.
3.0A. Using Geographic Tools
Indicator 1. Use geographic tools to locate places and describe human and physical characteristics in Colonial America
Objective a. Use map elements to interpret and construct a variety of maps
Objective b. Use a globe and a variety of maps, atlases to identify natural/physical features of colonial settlements
Objective c. Use photographs, maps, and drawings to describe geographic characteristics
3.0B. Geographic Characteristics of Places and Regions
Indicator 1. Examine the similarities and differences of regions in Colonial America
Objective b. Describe how geographic characteristics of a place or region changed from early settlements through the colonial period
Objective c. Explain how geographic characteristics affect how people live and work, and the population distribution of a place or region
3.0C. Movement of People, Goods and Ideas
Indicator 1. Describe and analyze population growth, migration, and settlement patterns in Colonial America
Objective a. Explain how geographic characteristics influenced settlement patterns in Colonial America
 
Grades 3-5
Standard 6.0 Social Studies Skills and Processes: Students shall use reading, writing, and thinking processes and skills to gain knowledge and understanding of political, historical, and current events using chronological and spatial thinking, economic reasoning, and historical interpretation, by framing and evaluating questions from primary and secondary sources.
6.0A. Read to Learn and Construct Meaning about Social Studies
Indicator 1. Use appropriate strategies and opportunities to increase understandings of social studies vocabulary
Objective a. Acquire and apply new vocabulary through investigating, listening, independent reading and discussing a variety of print and non-print sources
Objective d. Use new vocabulary in speaking and writing to gain and extend content knowledge and clarify expression
Indicator 4. Use strategies to demonstrate understanding of the text (after reading)
Objective i. Draw conclusions and make generalizations based on the text, multiple texts, and/or prior knowledge
6.0B. Write to Learn and Communicate Social Studies Understandings
Indicator 1. Use informal writing strategies, such as journal writing, note taking, quick writes, and graphic organizers to clarify, organize, remember and/or express new understandings
Objective a. Identify key ideas
6.0D. Acquire Social Studies Information
Indicator 1. Identify primary and secondary sources of information that relate to the topic/situation/problem being studied
Objective c. Locate and gather data and information from appropriate non-print sources, such as music, artifacts, charts, maps, graphs, photographs, video clips, illustrations, paintings, political cartoons, interviews, and oral histories
6.0F. Analyze Social Studies Information
1. Interpret information from primary and secondary sources
Objective a. Interpret information in maps, charts and graphs
6.0G. Answer Social Studies Questions
2. Use historic contexts to answer questions
Objective a. Use historically accurate resources to answer questions, make predictions, and support ideas
 
Objectives for students
  1. To describe the importance of the railroad industry to the nation’s economy and trade routes.
  2. To explain the impact the railroad industry had on people’s quality of life.
  3. To list several reasons why the B&O Railroad’s main goal was to reach the Ohio River.
Materials for students
The materials listed below either can be used directly on the computer or can be printed out, photocopied, and distributed to students. The map and images appear twice: in a low-resolution version with associated questions and alone in a larger, high-resolution version.
  1. One map of the regions impacted by the B&O Railroad.
  2. One reading about the importance of freight transportation within the railroad industry.
  3. Three images illustrating different types of freight vehicles during the early years of railroading.

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