Lesson Plans for Chapter 5 Early Settlements




Identify cultural groups who inhabited North America in the 17th century (i.e., Puritans, Quakers, Spanish, French).


Recognize the concept of supply and demand.


Identify major industries of Colonial America using a map of the original 13 colonies.


Recognize the difference between a barter system and a money system.


Analyze the impact of European exploration and colonization on the economy


Identify and use key geographical features on maps (i.e., mountains, rivers, plains, valleys, forests).


Recognize the reasons settlements are founded on major river systems (i.e., transportation, manmade boundaries, food, and water sources).


Examine how the Mayflower Compact is a symbol of the first United States government.


Interpret a timeline that depicts major historical pre-Civil War events.


Determine the hardships faced by early Tennessee settlers in the late 1700s (i.e., security, isolated communities, lack of access to goods, natural geography).


Determine the reasons for colonial settlement (i.e., religious, economic, individual freedom).


Day 1 The Lost Colony & The Jamestown Colony

  1. Vocabulary
  2. Text p. 96-99
  3. Jamestown Game http://www.historyglobe.com/jamestown/jamestown.swf
  4. BrainPop http://www.brainpop.com/socialstudies/famoushistoricalfigures/pocahontas/
  5. Online Story with quiz http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/famouspeople/standard/pocahontas/index.shtml#focus
  6. On the Trail of Captain John Smith http://kids.nationalgeographic.com/Games/InteractiveAdventures/John-smith
  7. United Streaming
  8. Read about Pocahontas

    Read about Pocahontas

    Show 500 Nations video about Pocahontas (15 minutes)

    Sequence story of Pocahontas with sentence strips (from Literature Unit Pocahontas pages 12-13)
    Have students retell the story using stick puppets (from Literature Unit Pocahontas pages 18-19).

    Activity - Making a Picturestrip of Jamestown

    Coloring picture of Pocahontas, Captain Smith, and Powhatan from Educational Coloring Book of the Colonies

  9. Book - Pocahontas Princess of the River Tribes

  10. Corn Pudding

    3 cups water
    1 teaspoon salt
    1 cups yellow cornmeal

    Pour water and salt into a large saucepan. Bring to boil and slowly add the cornmeal cup at a time, stirring constantly. Turn heat down and continue stirring until the mixture thickens. Spoon into bowls and top with butter, sprinkle of nutmeg, and some molasses.

Lecture - Reasons why English came to America (Notes in Students' Folders)

Lecture on Jamestown (Notes in Students' Folders)  ****Stress the reasons for locating Jamestown on the James River.

First colony in America







Day 2 The Plymouth Colony  (Pilgrims)

  1. Vocabulary
  2. Text p. 102-104
  3. United Streaming
  4. BrainPop http://www.brainpop.com/socialstudies/culture/thanksgiving/

Lecture on or read sections of the book . . . If You Sailed on the Mayflower in 1620 (Pages 10-26)

Pilgrims wanted to break away from the Church of England.
Pilgrims were jailed and fined in England for starting their own church.
Pilgrims were afraid to stay in England so went to Holland in 1608.
lived in Holland 12 years
not happy in Holland

bought ship Speedwell to go to America
ship small and old
needed second ship
so made an agreement with businessmen in England
businessmen got Pilgrims a ship Mayflower and bought food and supplies
in return Pilgrims agreed to work for the businessmen for 7 years
agreed to send furs and lumber from the New World
102 people left from England
given land in what is now New York

Speedwell became leaky and had to return to England
some passengers stayed behind in England - others crowded on Mayflower


  1. Tape off an area 8 by 8 feet on the floor.

  2. Have eleven children stand in the space.

  3. Discuss how crowded they feel

  4. Next serve a meal of beef jerky, soda crackers, cheese and water.

  5. Tell the students that the Pilgrims ate a lot of dried salted meat, hard crackers called hard tack, and cheese on the Mayflower. Discuss that preserving food was necessary and that slating and drying were the best methods available in 1620.

Continue lecture or continue reading . . . If You Sailed on the Mayflower in 1620 (Pages 27 - 30)

Show poster of the Mayflower.

journey took 66 days
ship blown off course


  1. Fill a one-liter plastic bottle about half full with mineral oil. Add a few drops of food coloring, and then fill the rest of the bottle with water. Add a small plastic object to represent the Mayflower.

  2. Screw the top on tightly and tape.

  3. Ask the students to make waves by shaking, rocking, and rolling the bottle.

  4. Discussion

    1. Does the plastic object ride the waves or sink?

    2. How do you think the Pilgrims felt during the storms they had while on the Mayflower?

Continue Lecture

Pilgrims landed near Cape Cod in Massachusetts
settlement started in 1620
leader William Bradford

Have students read the mini-book The Pilgrims by Barnacle, Ship's Cat of the Mayflower.

Show the video American History for Children:  Early Settlers:  The Pilgrims and the Mayflower.

Mayflower Compact


Once the people aboard the Mayflower realized that the terms of their agreement applied to Virginia, and not to New England, where they were, the leaders wrote the Mayflower Compact. The document was signed on ship within sight of land. The compact stated

The Mayflower Compact was a form of government for the colony.

Show Video American History for Children:  Early Settlers:  The Story of the Mayflower Compact

Make Pilgrim costumes (coif for girls and hat for boys)

Lecture or continue reading . . . If You Sailed on the Mayflower in 1620 (Pages 43 - 56, 72, 74-80)

on November 11, 1620 after 66 days Pilgrims came to Cape Cod
first winter struggled to build shelter
in two or three months half of the people died
half the people who survived were children
only four women lived
called new settlement Plimoth Plantation


Once the people aboard the Mayflower realized that the terms of their agreement applied to Virginia, and not to New England, where they were, the leaders wrote the Mayflower Compact. The document was signed on ship within sight of land. The compact stated

The Mayflower Compact was a form of government for the colony.

Show Video American History for Children:  Early Settlers:  The Story of the Mayflower Compact

Make Pilgrim costumes (coif for girls and hat for boys)

Additional Activities


Day 3 Massachusetts Bay Colony (Puritans)

  1. Vocabulary
  2. Text p. 104-105
  3. United Streaming




Make a pomander ball - Pomander balls were often placed in basket or cupboards in colonial homes to hide bad cooking odors. Colonial women  placed small pomander balls in handkerchiefs when they traveled so they could sniff their sweet smell instead of bad street odors.

pomander2.JPG (11050 bytes) Directions for making a pomander ball:  Use a toothpick to prick a hole in the skin of a piece of fruit such as an apple or orange. Then place a clove in the hole. Repeat until the entire fruit is covered with cloves. Next stick the tips of a wire hairpin into the fruit at the stem. Then roll the fruit in a dish of cinnamon. Place the fruit in a piece of cheesecloth. Twist the cheesecloth together around the hairpin. Use a piece of yarn to tie the cheesecloth onto the hairpin. Next tie a ribbon bow around the yarn. Allow the fruit to dry in a cool, dark place for two to three weeks until the fruit hardens. Place the dried pomander ball in a closet or drawer.


The New England Primer was the first textbook used in the United States. The first edition was printed in 1690 and was used in 1900. The New England Primer was used to help teach children how to read. It taught the alphabet using two line rhymes such as "A dog will bite a thief at night." or "An eagle's flight is out of sight."  It included rhymes to teach the alphabet and vocabulary words, as well as many poems with religious references.  

journal.JPG (18432 bytes) journal2.jpg (11612 bytes)

Create your own version of The New England Primer. First write your own poem such as the ones in the New England Primer. Use berry ink and a quill to write the poem on coffee or tea stained paper.

Colonial Americans sealed their letters with a wax seal. Wax was dripped from a candle onto the seam of the letter. The family seal, often times from a ring, was pressed into the wax just before it hardened. wax.JPG (3172 bytes)
newengland.JPG (31103 bytes)  

Build a New England village. 

Most of the early New England farmers settled in towns. Large land areas were given to men who belonged to the church. These men divided the land among themselves. These towns had a village green. This was a common pasture for cattle, horses, and sheep. The village green was in the center of the village. A church or meeting house was built at one end of the green. The land surrounding the town was also divided among the families. This land was used to grow vegetable gardens and grain. Later the pasture land was moved outside the town. The village green then became a park. In later years a school house, a mill, a blacksmith shop, a general store, and a tavern were added.

Coloring pictures of Massachusetts Bay and New Hampshire Colonies from Educational Coloring Book of the Colonies



Day 4 New Netherland & New France

  1. Vocabulary
  2. Text p. 106-109
  3. French were fur traders - text pages 110-111
  4. United Streaming The French Fur Traders (01:40)
  5. Make a model of a canoe
  6. Lecture

    The French settled along the St. Lawrence and the Mississippi Rivers. Most of the people living in these outposts were men. They spent their time going up and down the river in canoes trapping or trading their furs. The beaver was the main trade fur.

    A few people got rich on the beaver fur trades. Unfortunately they were not the trappers. The one who made money were the men who bought the furs from the trappers.

    In the summer the trappers lived alone or in pairs in the woods. In the winter these trappers with with the Indians. They usually lived with the Algonquians or the Huron. Because the French helped the Algonquians and Huron, they became enemies with the Iroquois who were enemies with the Algonquians and Huron. Many French settlers were killed by the Iroquois.

    The French king controlled his empire in America. The king ruled the area through the Royal Governor. Men under the Royal Governor were called seigniors. The seigniors controlled large pieces of land. In this hierarchy the lowest group of people were called habitants. They were the workers.

    The law stated that all furs, lumber, and fish from the French colonies could be traded only with France or other French colonies. This kept the money between the French colonies and France.

    Learn about the beaver. What was this animal like? Why was its fur so highly prized? What did the French make from the beavers' fur?

  7. Map Activities

    • Instructional Fair, Inc. #IF8552 U. S. Map Skills pages 15-17

    • United States and Its Neighbors Chapter 7, Building Geography Skills page 47

    • Life in Colonial America "Land Claims in North America by 1670"

  8. Discuss barter system and concept of supply and demand.

  9. BrainPop http://www.brainpop.com/socialstudies/economics/supplyanddemand/

  10. Bartering Activity - Students bring in item worth $1.00-$2.00 to barter.


Day 5 Review and Test

1.  United Streaming  Early Colonists (05:29)

2.  Games

3.  Chapter 5 Review
4.  Chapter 5 Test
5.  Unit 2 TCAP Test Practice