Pocahontas

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The lesson introduces students to Pocahontas and the myths and facts about her life as it relates to Jamestown and the colonists from England.  Most children will have heard of this princess through popular movies and books, however, may not understand her significance in history.  Teachers must know that various Internet sites may use different facts. The lesson may be used in conjunction with other lessons related to Jamestown, the colonies, or famous women in history.

Pocahontas Lesson Plan Includes:

  • Full Teacher Guidelines with Creative Teaching Ideas
  • Instructional Content Pages about Pocahontas
  • Hands-on homework activities
  • Answer Keys
  • Common Core State Standards
  • Many Additional Links and Resources
  • Built for Grades 1-3 but can be adapted for other grade levels.

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Description

This fun and informative lesson introduces students to Pocahontas and the myths and facts about her. The lessons begins by defining myth and explaining that much of the information students may already know about Pocahontas is fiction. Pocahontas’s early life is described in the lesson, including the help she provided to colonists in Jamestown. Her kidnapping and subsequent marriage to John Rolfe is included, as well as her time in England. The lesson can be used in conjunction with other lessons about Jamestown or the colonies.

Sample Classroom Procedure / Teacher Instruction:  

  1. Ask students: What do you think it would be like to become a princess or prince? What would you like or dislike about the role?
  2. Allow for responses and discussion. Ask students if they ever heard of Pocahontas.  (Most should respond in the affirmative.) Ask them who she was, and what she did.
  3. Allow for responses and discussion. Introduce Pocahontas and discuss the meaning a myth with the class.  Ask them if they know of any myths.
  4. Allow for responses and distribute Pocahontas content pages. Read and review the information with the students.  A map may be used to show the area of Jamestown.  Save the final question for the lesson closing.  Use the additional resources to enhance understanding.
  5. Distribute Activity pages. Read and review the instructions.  Students work alone and write the diary entries in 1st-person.  You may need to include an example for the class.  Encourage students to add details which may or may not be true.  They may use their imaginations.  (For younger students, the activity may be completed aloud with the class.)
  6. Once completed, the students share some of their entries with a partner and/or with the entire class.
  7. Distribute Practice page. Check and review the students’ responses.
  8. Distribute the Homework page. The next day, check and review the students’ responses.  Allow students to share their names and reasons.
  9. In closing, ask students: Imagine being Pocahontas, what do you think was going through her mind when she was first kidnapped by the English people? Remember, she had been helping them earlier.
  10. Allow for responses and discussion. Further ask students if they think Pocahontas forgave the man who captured her onto the ship.  Why or why not?

Common Core State Standards:

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.1.7, CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.2.3, CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.2.7, CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.3.3,CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.3.7

Class Sessions (45 minutes): at least 2 class sessions

Additional Resources:

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Additional information

Grade Level

1st Grade, 2nd Grade, 3rd Grade

Subject

Social Studies