Lincoln Speeches

07/08/11 20:58

Lincoln Speeches And Their Relationship to the Declaration of Independence

Overview: Analyze Lincoln's presidency and aspects of the American Civil War through the words of Lincoln, i.e. speeches and addresses. This lesson specifically investigates Lincoln's "House Divided" speech, First Inaugural Address, and Gettysburg Address. These speeches and addresses help students understand Lincoln as a man and president, his views and goals for the nation, and his stance on slavery. As Lincoln's words are studied, students will build an understanding about Lincoln's commitment to the principles of the Declaration of Independence and keeping the Nation whole during the American Civil War.

This lesson specifically investigates Lincoln's "House Divided" speech, First Inaugural Address, and Gettysburg Address. These speeches and addresses help students understand Lincoln as a man and president, his views and goals for the nation, and his stance on slavery. As Lincoln's words are studied, students will build an understanding about Lincoln's commitment to the principles of the Declaration of Independence and keeping the Nation whole during the American Civil War.

Objectives & Inquiry Questions

07/08/11 19:58

Objectives:

Students will...

  1. Ask how President Lincoln changed during the Civil War, whether or not he could have prevented the war, and how he maintained founding principles during a time of war.
  2. Examine and interpret photographs of President Lincoln and Civil War images.
  3. Understand the chronological order of President Lincoln's speeches.
  4. Know the focus of three of President Lincoln's speeches:  House Divided, First Inaugural, and Gettysburg Addresses.
  5. Understand the language of the House Divided speech and Gettysburg Address.
  6. Understand and analyze the first paragraph of the First Inaugural Address.
  7. Write a response to one of the inquiry questions.

Questions for Inquiry:

  1. Did Lincoln's views change over time?
  2. Did Lincoln stay true to the principles stated in the Declaration of Independence
  3. Could Lincoln have prevented a Civil War?
  4. Was the United States at the time of the Civil War pro or against slavery?

Materials Needed

  • Students notebooks and writing utensils
  • History textbook
  • Two historical photos of Lincoln - pre-presidency and end of first administration
  • Lincoln photo analysis response handout
  • Full printed sets of each of the following speeches/addresses (for teacher use, not to be passed out to students): House Divided, First Inaugural Address, Gettysburg Address, and Second Inaugural Address and Declaration of Independence list of principles
  • Strips of paper with excerpts from each speech with italicized summaries
  • Last paragraph of 1st Inaugural Address with "mystic chords" chart
  • Internet access to YouTube and Library of Congress
  • List of Questions for Inquiry with summary graphic organizer
  • Questions for Inquiry writing prompt with rubric