The Civil War Curriculum | Goal 7 | Elementary School
1864-1865: Bringing the War to an End
By the Civil War Trust, Endorsed by History™
Approximate Length of Time: 50 minutes
Goal: Students will be able to list the sequence of events leading to the end of the Civil War, paying special attention to the election of 1864.
1. Students will list the sequence of events leading to the end of the war and place each event on a map.
2. Students will engage in group and class debates over the issues of the 1864 election and write a paragraph explaining both Lincoln’s and McClellan’s views on the war prior to the election of 1864.
3. After reading a portion of The Last Salute of the Army of Northern Virginia, students will discuss U.S. soldier’s feelings toward Confederate soldiers.
1. Bringing the War to an End PowerPoint
2. Timeline and Map Worksheet
3. Lincoln & McClellan Cards
4. The Chicago Platform
5. The Baltimore Platform
6. What Do You Think?
7. The Last Salute of the Army of Northern Virginia
By 1864 the situation is looking up for the United States, with victories at Vicksburg and Gettysburg; however, some people are tired of war and are looking for a way to end it soon.
Lincoln will soon complete one four-year term as president. How do you think the election is going to go? Do you think Lincoln will be reelected or will someone else become president? While Lincoln believes that it is important to keep fighting to bring the Southern states back into the Union, what do you think his opponent believes?
Print out the PowerPoint with notes prior to class. There are notes included with the slides that can be on the printed slides, but won’t be seen by your students during the presentation.
1. Throughout the lesson, follow the Bringing the War to an End PowerPoint.
2. Hand out Timeline and Map Worksheet, copied back to back.
3. Have students fill in the Timeline.
4. As you go through the events in the PowerPoint, have students place the events on the map and write in the dates.
5. Hand out the Lincoln & McClellan Cards to students; there should be roughly the same number of Lincolns and McClellans.
6. Hand out the Baltimore Platform to all of the Lincolns and the Chicago Platform to all of the McClellans.
7. Begin the Bringing the War to an End PowerPoint presentation.
8. Read the bolded information of each platform together as a class.
9. Put all of the Lincolns in one group and all of the McClellan in another.
10. Hand out the What Do You Think? Worksheet, and have students work together to gather their ideas for a debate, filling out the note sheet as they go.
As a class, read the excerpt from U.S. brigadier general Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain’s Last Salute of the Army of Northern Virginia and discuss.
Assessment in this Lesson:
1. Completed timeline
2. Completed map
3. Informal evaluation during the Lincoln/McClellan debate.
4. Notes on the What Do You Think? worksheet.
5. Informal evaluation through the discussion questions on the Last Salute of the Army of Northern Virginia.