Grade Levels: 3-5, 6-8

*Click to open and customize your own copy of the Bass Reeves Lesson Plan

This lesson accompanies the BrainPOP topic Bass Reeves, and supports the standard of evaluating the contributions of various individuals. Students demonstrate understanding through a variety of projects.

Step 1: ACTIVATE PRIOR KNOWLEDGE

Display this image from the movie (timestamp: 1:21):

Ask students:

  • What do you think the phrase “American Frontier” means?
  • What do you notice about this frontier town? 
  • Why do you think  people might have moved out west? 

Step 2: BUILD BACKGROUND

  • Read the description on the Bass Reeves topic page.
  • Play the Movie, pausing to check for understanding. 
  • Have students read one of the four Related Reading articles. Partner them with someone who read a different article to share what they learned with each other.

Step 3: ENGAGE

Students express what they learned about Bass Reeves while practicing essential literacy skills with one or more of the following activities. Differentiate by assigning ones that meet individual student needs.

  • Make-a-Movie: Produce a biopic chronicling Bass Reeves’s life and experiences. (Essential Literacy Skill: Summarize key details)
  • Make-a-Map: Make a concept map identifying the impact of different events, groups, and policies on Bass Reeves’s life. (Essential  Literacy Skill: Determine central ideas)
  • Creative Coding: Code a flag representing Bass Reeves’s legacy. (Essential Literacy Skill: Make logical inferences from explicit details)
  • Primary Source Activity: Read the newspaper column about U.S. Marshals, and cite details to answer the accompanying questions. (Essential Literacy Skill: Cite specific evidence to support conclusions drawn)

Step 4: APPLY & ASSESS 

Apply: Students take the Bass Reeves Challenge, applying essential literacy skills while demonstrating what they learned about this topic.

Assess: Wrap up the lesson with the Bass Reeves Quiz.  

Step 5:  EXTEND LEARNING

Time Zone X: Bass Reeves:  Challenge players to put historical events in chronological order in this interactive timeline game.

Related BrainPOP Topics: Deepen understanding of the United States during the period of Westward Expansion with these topics: Westward Expansion, Trail of Tears, and Gold Rush

Additional Support Resources:

 

 

Lesson Plan Common Core State Standards Alignments

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