This lesson explores the impact of the Civil War and Reconstruction on the Five Tribes. Students will begin this lesson with a Word Splash activity to activate their prior knowledge about the Five Tribes' involvement in the Civil War. Next, students will explore the Reconstruction Treaties of 1866 (treaties that the Five Tribes were forced to make with the United States after fighting for the Confederacy) in an effort to determine the major terms of these treaties and their impact on the tribes' sovereignty in the years following the Civil War. Students will conclude the lesson by creating a Six-Word Memoir to summarize their understanding of the impact of Reconstruction on the Five Tribes.
How have the policies and decisions of the U.S. government impacted tribal sovereignty? How did the Reconstruction Treaties of 1866 impact the Native American peoples in Indian Territory?
Students participate in a Word Splash activity to activate their prior knowledge about the involvement of the Five Tribes in the Civil War.
Students analyze the Reconstruction Treaties of 1866 and identify and explain the major terms of those treaties.
Students contribute to a whole-class discussion to generate a list of the major treaty terms.
Students develop CER statements to describe how the Reconstruction Treaties impacted tribal sovereignty.
Students craft a Six-Word Memoir related to the Reconstruction Treaties.
Lesson Slides (attached)
Reconstruction Treaties of 1866 (attached; enough copies so each student receives one of the four treaties)
Reconstruction Treaties of 1866 Teacher's Notes (attached)
CER chart (attached; one per student)
CER with Teacher's Notes (attached)
Student devices with Internet access (optional)
Use the attached Lesson Slides to guide the lesson. Begin with slide 2. Assign students to groups of 3–4, and then introduce the Word Splash activity. To activate their prior knowledge, students will work with their groups to create 1–2 sentences that incorporate the five terms—Union, Confederacy, Civil War, Five Tribes, and Indian Territory—and explain how they are connected. Give students approximately five minutes to discuss and write their sentences.
Once groups are ready, call on volunteers to share their sentences with the class. Clarify any misconceptions that students might have. When you feel that students have shared enough to have provided a review of the relevant content that you have previously covered about the Five Tribes involvement in the Civil War, continue with the lesson.
Display slide 3. Tell students that in this lesson, they will be discussing the Reconstruction Treaties of 1866. Give groups 2-3 minutes to predict how the terms from the Word Splash might connect to the Reconstruction Treaties of 1866. Call on a few groups to share their ideas with the class and form a hypothesis. Be sure not to single out any "correct" answers at this point, but instead explain to students that they will be exploring these hypotheses as the lesson progresses.
Display slide 4. Tell students that, while they are learning about the Reconstruction Treaties of 1866, they should keep in mind the following essential questions: How have the policies and decisions of the U.S. government impacted tribal sovereignty? How did Reconstruction affect Native American peoples in Indian Territory? Additionally, consider sharing the learning objectives on slide 5 to indicate to students that by the end of the lesson they should be able to identify and explain the major terms of the Reconstruction Treaties of 1866 and evaluate the impact that the terms of those treaties had on Native American peoples in Indian Territory.
Remind students that at least a portion of each of the Five Tribes (Cherokee, Choctaw, Chickasaw, Creek, and Seminole) fought for the Confederacy during the Civil War. Because the tribes had taken up arms against the United States, the United States claimed that the previous treaties between the United States and the tribes were broken or void, and, therefore, new treaties needed to be negotiated. These new treaties became known as the Reconstruction Treaties of 1866.
For this activity, students will continue to work in their groups of 3-4. Assign each group one of the four Reconstruction Treaties of 1866 (Cherokee Treaty, Chickasaw and Choctaw Treaty, Creek Treaty, or Seminole Treaty), with each student receiving a copy of the assigned treaty from the attached Reconstruction Treaties of 1866. Explain to students that by analyzing the treaty their group is assigned, they will work together to identify and explain the eight major terms of the Reconstruction treaties made between the United States and the Five Tribes. Students will use the Stop and Jot strategy to analyze the treaty that they have been given. Students will read a portion of the text and then work together to summarize that term of the treaty. They will then move on to the next portion of the text, repeating the same process until they have summarized all eight major terms. Refer to the attached Reconstruction Treaties of 1866 Teacher's Notes for possible student responses.
Display slide 6. Bring the whole class together to discuss findings from the Stop and Jot activity. Explain to students that they are going to generate a class list of the major terms of the Reconstruction treaties based on their analysis of the treaties. Ask each group to elect a spokesperson.
Call on each group at least once to contribute to the class discussion by introducing a term from the Reconstruction treaty and explaining it. As students share, record their responses on the board or in the blank space on slide 6.
Optionally, after groups have shared all eight terms of the treaties, display slides 7 and 8 to summarize the terms and clarify any details or fill in any missing information.
Ask students to take a few minutes to make certain that their Stop and Jot summaries generally reflect the synthesis represented in the class list.
Display slide 9. Explain to students that ultimately, the Reconstruction Treaties of 1866 had a significant effect on the sovereignty of the Five Tribes. Tell students that tribal sovereignty refers to a tribe's inherent right to govern itself and maintain authority over its own land.
Display slide 10. Ask students, Given what you have learned about the major requirements of the Reconstruction treaties, how do you think these treaties impacted the sovereignty of the tribes? Engage in a whole-class discussion, asking several students to share their thoughts.
Display slide 11, and distribute a copy of the attached CER chart to each student. Tell students that they will build on this discussion to develop CER (Claim, Evidence, Reasoning) statements that explain how the Reconstruction Treaties of 1866 affected tribal sovereignty.
Claim: As a class, formulate a single claim statement based on your previous conversation. For example, The Reconstruction Treaties of 1866 threatened the sovereignty of the Five Tribes.
Evidence: Students should use one of the eight terms that they identified in their analysis of the treaties as the "evidence" to support their claim. You can assign terms or let students choose which term they would like to use. Or, as another option, ask students to use 2–3 different terms as evidence.
Reasoning: Students will explain how the evidence supports the claim.
Refer to the attached CER Teacher's Notes for examples of completed CER statements.
After students have finished writing, ask for several volunteers to read their CER statements out loud to the class. As students share, take time to offer verbal feedback about what they have written.
Display slide 12. Explain to students that they will now craft a Six-Word Memoir for the Reconstruction Treaties of 1866. These memoirs should summarize students' understanding of the impact that the Reconstruction Treaties of 1866 had on the sovereignty and futures of Native American peoples in Indian Territory. If you want to give students examples without giving them ideas for this specific "memoir," you could share the two examples from the strategy card:
Rosa Parks: "Refused to move. Launched a movement."
John Rockefeller: "I'm as slick as my oil."
Ask for volunteers to share their memoirs with the class, and then have students turn them in as an assessment for this lesson. Optionally, collect the Reconstruction treaty Stop and Jot analysis and CER statements as other forms of assessment.
Huston, J. L. (n.d.). Civil War era. The Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture. https://www.okhistory.org/publications/enc/entry.php?entry=CI011.
K20 Center. (n.d.). Claim, evidence, reasoning (CER). Strategies. https://learn.k20center.ou.edu/strategy/d9908066f654727934df7bf4f506fc09
K20 Center. (n.d.). Six-word memoirs. Strategies. https://learn.k20center.ou.edu/strategy/7b4de59085f566aa097814b8c002b98a
K20 Center. (n.d.). Stop and jot. Strategies. https://learn.k20center.ou.edu/strategy/d9908066f654727934df7bf4f5077921
K20 Center. (n.d.). Word splash. Strategies. https://learn.k20center.ou.edu/strategy/fe96d3de46cfdc1f385aab7e7500a888
Pennington, W. D. (n.d.). Reconstruction treaties. The Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture. https://www.okhistory.org/publications/enc/entry.php?entry=RE001.