ERIC Number: ED429001
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1998
Reference Count: N/A
The Freedmen's Bureau: Catalyst for Freedom? A Unit of Study for Grades 8-12.
Koman, Rita G.
Within this supplementary teaching unit, students investigate primary source documents to evaluate federal government policy regarding the transition of some four million African Americans from slavery to freedom at the conclusion of the Civil War. Lessons in the unit examine the political debate over the establishment of the Freedmen's Bureau, its goals, the problems encountered in pursuing stated goals, and an evaluation of its effectiveness. Noting that this paternalistic role assumed by the first federal welfare agency is not given much attention in textbooks, the unit discusses the debate over the depth of government involvement in the lives of freed persons and the politicians' feelings that the government should shoulder a broad responsibility to remodel Southern society and instigate a new racial order. The teaching unit is based on primary sources taken from federal legislation, bureau records, land regulations, labor contracts, letters, artifacts, journals, diaries, newspapers, and literature from the period under study. Students are actively involved in a military hearing using evidence culled from official transcripts. Within this unit are: (1) unit objectives; (2) correlation to the National History Standards; (3) teacher background materials (which provide an overview of the entire unit); (4) lesson plans (which include a variety of ideas and approaches); and (5) student resources. Contains a 17-item selected bibliography. (BT)
Descriptors: Class Activities, Curriculum Enrichment, Federal Legislation, Government Role, History Instruction, Learning Activities, Secondary Education, Social Studies, United States History, Units of Study
National Center for History in the Schools, Department of History, University of California, Los Angeles, 5262 Bunche Hall, 405 Hilgard Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1473; Fax: 310-267-2103.
Publication Type: Guides - Classroom - Teacher
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Practitioners; Teachers
Authoring Institution: National Center for History in the Schools, Los Angeles, CA.