When Do Students Learn About The Underground Railroad? (TOP 5 Tips)

What is the Underground Railroad and why is it important?

  • Students will learn about the history of the Underground Railroad, a covert network of former slaves, free black men and women, Northern abolitionists, and church leaders who helped fugitive slaves escape to freedom. Loading Loading

What grade is the Underground Railroad?

The lessons are suitable for grades 4-9. The Anti-Slavery Society of Canada was the last of several short-lived anti-slavery societies in Canada. These societies were part of an international abolitionist movement supported by leading moral thinkers of the day in Britain, Europe and the United States.

What was the Underground Railroad 4th grade?

The Underground Railroad was a term used for a network of people, homes, and hideouts that slaves in the southern United States used to escape to freedom in the Northern United States and Canada.

Why should students learn about the Underground Railroad?

It is a demonstration of how African Americans could organize on their own – dispelling the myth that African Americans did not resist enslavement. It provided an opportunity for sympathetic Americans to assist in the abolition of slavery.

What timeline was the Underground Railroad?

Timeline Description: The Underground Railroad ( 1790s to 1860s ) was a linked network of individuals willing and able to help fugitive slaves escape to safety. They hid individuals in cellars, basements and barns, provided food and supplies, and helped to move escaped slaves from place to place.

How did Harriet Tubman find out about the Underground Railroad?

The Underground Railroad and Siblings Tubman first encountered the Underground Railroad when she used it to escape slavery herself in 1849. Following a bout of illness and the death of her owner, Tubman decided to escape slavery in Maryland for Philadelphia.

How do you explain the Underground Railroad to kids?

It went through people’s houses, barns, churches, and businesses. People who worked with the Underground Railroad cared about justice and wanted to end slavery. They risked their lives to help enslaved people escape from bondage, so they could remain safe on the route.

What year did the Underground Railroad begin and end?

system used by abolitionists between 1800-1865 to help enslaved African Americans escape to free states.

When did the Underground Railroad end?

End of the Line The Underground Railroad ceased operations about 1863, during the Civil War. In reality, its work moved aboveground as part of the Union effort against the Confederacy.

How many slaves did Levi Coffin help escape?

In 1826, he moved to Indiana and over the next 20 years he assisted more than 2,000 enslaved persons escape bondage, so many that his home was known as the “Grand Central Station of the Underground Railroad.”

What were slaves legally considered?

Legally considered property, slaves were not allowed to own property of their own. They were not allowed to assemble without the presence of a white person. Slaves that lived off the plantation were subject to special curfews.

What is the main idea of the Underground Railroad?

The Underground Railroad—the resistance to enslavement through escape and flight, through the end of the Civil War—refers to the efforts of enslaved African Americans to gain their freedom by escaping bondage. Wherever slavery existed, there were efforts to escape.

What is the significance of compromise of 1850?

As part of the Compromise of 1850, the Fugitive Slave Act was amended and the slave trade in Washington, D.C., was abolished. Furthermore, California entered the Union as a free state and a territorial government was created in Utah.

Is the Underground Railroad based on true events?

Adapted from Colson Whitehead’s Pulitzer-award-winning novel, The Underground Railroad is based on harrowing true events. Directed by Barry Jenkins, the new Amazon Prime series is a loyal adaptation of Colson Whitehead’s novel of the same name.

How many slaves were freed from the Underground Railroad?

The total number of runaways who used the Underground Railroad to escape to freedom is not known, but some estimates exceed 100,000 freed slaves during the antebellum period. Those involved in the Underground Railroad used code words to maintain anonymity.

Was Frederick Douglass in the Underground Railroad?

The famous abolitionist, writer, lecturer, statesman, and Underground Railroad conductor Frederick Douglass (1817–1895) resided in this house from 1877 until his death. He was a leader of Rochester’s Underground Railroad movement and became the editor and publisher of the North Star, an abolitionist newspaper.

Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad

Background During the first half of the nineteenth century, the size and popularity of the railroad system in the United States contributed to the code names slaves and abolitionists used to describe the operations of the Underground Railroad, such as “passenger,” “cargo,” “station,” “depot,” “stockholder,” and “conductor,” which were used to describe the operations of the Underground Railroad. Because many slaves and abolitionists were well-versed in the bible, they often employed religious code phrases, such as “River Jordan,” “Heaven,” “Promised Land,” and “Moses,” to communicate their intentions.

The Underground Railroad’s facilitators, or conductors, were typically free black people in the North, formerly escaped slaves, and a Even though slaves had a more difficult time fleeing from the most southern states—such as Alabama and Mississippi—because they were surrounded by other slave-holding states, practically every state had some level of Underground Railroad activity throughout the period.

To find out if there is a historic Underground Railway station near you, see this list of historic Underground Railway stations.

Fugitive, escapee, and runaway are all phrases that imply that the individual who is fleeing forced labor is somehow at fault for seeking freedom from captivity or slavery.

  • These and other vocabulary phrases, such as personal liberty statutes, redemption, and manumission, may be found on the National Park Service’s “Language of Slavery” webpage, which can be accessed by clicking here.
  • To analyze how the importance of people and groups’ activities varies over time and is formed by the historical context, use questions produced about them to assess how the significance of their actions changes over time and is impacted by the historical context.
  • North Carolina Standards for Secondary School History 12.9-12.
  • The NCSS.D2.His.14.9-12 standard requires students to analyze many and complex causes and consequences of events that have occurred in the past.
  • When creating a historical argument, it is important to distinguish between long-term causes and triggering events.
  • Integrate evidence from numerous relevant historical sources and interpretations into a reasoned argument about the past.

Students could also look into the following persons and important words throughout these crucial years:

  • Eli Whitney invented the cotton gin in 1794
  • The Slave Trade Ban was implemented in 1808
  • Vestal and Levi Coffin established an escape route for slaves in 1820
  • The Missouri Compromise was implemented in 1820
  • Denmark Vesey founded Charleston in 1822
  • Nat Turner founded Philadelphia in 1831
  • The American Anti-Slavery Society was established in Philadelphia in 1833
  • The Mexican-American War was implemented in 1846-1848
  • Harriet Tubman founded Harpers Ferry in 1859

The Underground Railroad’s conductors were well-versed in how to take advantage of any and all available opportunities. Freedom-seekers rested during the day and traveled the majority of their long-distance (5-10 mile) journeys at night, when they were less likely to be seen. Whenever it was necessary to travel during the day on the train, passengers took on errands and activities to give the impression that they were employed by someone in the vicinity. In spite of the fact that fleeing during the winter may be risky due to the severely cold environment of the northern hemisphere, the winter provided significantly longer periods of darkness under which to seek refuge.

  1. The Underground Railroad, on the other hand, has spawned a great deal of legend surrounding the signals that comrades would transmit to one another.
  2. For further information on more songs from this era, please see the Music in African American History lesson on EDSITEment’s website.
  3. While historians are divided on whether or not songs and textiles may have been used to transmit secret messages in the Underground Railroad system, they remain vital components of African American culture in the nineteenth century, regardless of whether they were utilized to do so.
  4. For a more detailed account of an Underground Railroad site financed by the National Endowment for the Humanities, see The President of the Underground Railroad (also known as the Underground Railroad President).
  5. Activities for the Lesson

Activity 1. The Life of Harriet Tubman

Harriet Tubman (Araminta Ross) was born in March 1822 in Dorchester County, Maryland, to Harriet Tubman’s parents. Her grandmother, Modesty, was kidnapped and sold into slavery in the United States. Three sisters were sold out of Tubman’s total of eight siblings. The responsibilities she carried out as a slave included caring for small children and putting animal traps in the fields, among other things. In one instance during Harriet’s childhood, a slave manager hurled a 2 pound metal weight at another slave, but the weight struck Harriet’s head instead.

  1. In this family photograph, Harriet Tubman may be seen standing at the far left.
  2. When her owner passed away, she and two of her brothers, Ben and Henry, ran to a more open area of land.
  3. Tubman eventually sought freedom once more, this time with the assistance of Quakers from Maryland, and crossed the Choptank River into Pennsylvania to do it.
  4. As Harriet herself stated, she never had a problem with losing a passenger.
  5. Because many who knew Tubman considered her to be illiterate, she would conceal herself behind a newspaper or a book whenever she was in danger of being detected by them.
  6. Take a look at some of the pieces from Chronicling America, this BackStory interview withRochelle Bush, a trustee and historian of Salem Chapel Church in St.

Catherines, Ontario, and thisBiography film to learn more about Harriet Tubman’s life and times. During their study of Tubman, students may want to think on the following questions:

  1. What attributes or abilities did Tubman possess that distinguished her as an especially effective leader on the Underground Railroad
  2. And In what ways did Tubman’s allies assist her, and who were they? Why should Harriet Tubman be regarded as a significant figure in the history of the United States
  3. Why

Activity 2. Conducting the Underground Railroad

Students can work in pairs or small groups to evaluate primary materials and reply to the questions that have been set forth by the instructor. All of the letters and papers that were utilized during this activity may be used into the mapping activity and evaluation process as well.

Group 1.

After reading this letter from Frederick Douglass to Harriet Tubman, take some time to discuss the following questions.

  1. What, according to Douglass, is the fundamental difference between himself and Tubman
  2. Was there anything in Douglass’s letter that revealed what he thought of Tubman’s deed? What is it that Douglass wants Tubman to be recognized for?

Group 2.

After reading this letter from Thomas Garrett to Harriet Tubman, take some time to discuss the following questions.

  1. What does Garrett have to say about Tubman’s personality
  2. What kind of knowledge does Garrett have regarding assisting freedom-seekers in their attempts to elude slavery? When it comes to Tubman, how does Garrett feel? Look for proof as well as inferences from his tone of voice

Group 3.

After reading about Harriet Tubman’s role in the Civil War and subsequently the records relating to her fight to collect recompense for her efforts, discuss the following questions with your classmates.

  1. After reading about Harriet Tubman’s role in the Civil War and subsequently the records pertaining to her fight to collect money for her efforts, discuss the following questions with your group.
See also:  What Happens If They Catch Escaped From The Underground Railroad? (The answer is found)

Activity 3. Mapping the Underground Railroad

The Underground Railroad produced a large number of lines that went in practically every direction. Some were more successful than others in their endeavors. Detail one route of the Underground Railroad and offer information about that route, using the resources listed below and the handout provided. Include the following information:

  • States that are free and/or slave along the path
  • During the winter months, the weather varies from state to state. Terrain (mountains, hills, lakes, rivers, and other natural features)
  • How many miles does it take to get from point A to point B? If relevant, notable cities should be included.

In addition to utilizing Google maps to locate the Underground Railroad, students should examine the Historic Hudson’s People Not Property website to learn more about the railroad. This interactive website describes what it was like to be enslaved and how it felt, as well as the implications and trade-offs that enslaved people were forced to make on a regular basis in their efforts to oppose tyranny and emancipation. Lesson Extensions includes a list of maintained Underground Railroad locations in each state, which may be found farther down on this page.

Assessment The students will write a proposal to Congress in order to synthesize the information they have learned about Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad.

Among the options include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • The depiction of Harriet Tubman on U.S. banknotes
  • Considering naming a highway or other public place in her name
  • Erecting a statue or monument in her honor The declaration of a national holiday every year

Students will argue for Tubman’s significance in history, what sort of recognition she should get, and why a certain day, location, and media was chosen. Students will use primary materials to support their arguments. Their submission should be backed with a prototype, mock-up, or simulation that will provide Congress an idea of what they would be receiving as an award. Students can submit their recommendations to their representatives once they have been reviewed by a teacher. Extensions to the Lesson

Historic Underground Railroad Sites

In collaboration with the National Park Service, a list of historic places believed to have served as stations or major meeting spots on the Underground Railroad has been created. If you were unaware that the network went all the way to Hawaii and the United States Virgin Islands, you would be shocked!

Enter your state or region to see photographs, videos, and educational material about your state or territory, including information regarding student visits. A few sites also provide lesson ideas for students in grades K-12.

National Archival Collections

The National Park Service has put up a guide on using source documents (spirituals, almanacs, diaries, gazettes, calendars, maps, and so on) in the process of researching and interpreting the Underground Railroad (An extensive research guide on Harriet Tubman’s life and times has been compiled by the Library of Congress for additional examination. Featuring Eric Foner, author of Gateway to Freedom; Edna Greene Medford, professor of history at Howard University; and Adam Rothman, the National Archives’ documentary ” Gateway to Freedom: The Hidden History of the Underground Railroad ” was released in October 2012.

Regional Archival Collections

This is a small selection of institutions, humanities centers, and historical societies that make digitized photographs and information about things associated to the Underground Railroad available to the general public. For information on this period of American history in your region of the country, check with your local libraries, museums, and other comparable institutions. Delaware Florida Illinois Massachusetts New York is the capital of the United States. OhioPennsylvania Encyclopedias supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities and State Humanities Councils


The five intermediate or middle-school-based lesson plans (aimed at students in grades 6-8) are designed to help students gain a better understanding of the work done on the Underground Railroad from the perspective of William Still. Some educators may find that these classroom lessons, worksheets, and ideas may be easily integrated into their ongoing units and/or lesson plans related to the subject matter, or that they can be altered for younger or older pupils with minimum redirection. They were created with educators in mind and with educators as the target audience.

The Underground Railroad Trail Re-creation Activity Guide provides instructors with options for engaging students in re-creating their own Underground Railroad trails, allowing them to appreciate that travel in the mid-1800s was at best a shaky path to freedom for those enslaved.

Lesson Plans

Download the whole PDF version of the Educator’s Guide (6.8 MB)

Underground Railroad Digital Classroom: Lesson Plans

Elementary, Middle, and High Schools are all options.

Featured Lesson Plans:

John M. Osborne, Dickinson College, Carlisle, PA Fugitive Slave Notices General lesson suitable for multiple levels that details the stories behind actual fugitive slave ads featured in William Still’s book The Underground Railroad.
Matthew Pinsker, Dickinson College, Carlisle, PA How Do Textbooks Describe the Underground Railroad? Includes examples from ten leading high school level American history textbooks describing the Underground Railroad and asks students to compare respective treatments.
Jeff Mummert, Hershey High School, Hershey, PA Henry “Box” Brown Social StudiesHenry “Box” Brown Interdisciplinary The social studies lesson plans include a portfolio of approaches from elementary, middle, and high school that engage students in various story telling skills and evaluating historical information.The interdisciplinary plans employ math, science, and geography, and use Google Earth technology to engage students at all levels in Henry Brown’s escape story.

School levels include elementary, middle, and high school, among others.

Underground Railroad

Kentucky’s Underground Railroad (Urban Underground Railroad) (M, O) “Local stories of courage and sacrifice on the Underground Railroad, the hidden network of people who assisted enslaved individuals in their journey north to freedom, have been unearthed in Boone County, Kentucky, as a result of recent study. As they prepared to cross the Ohio River, people could take in the scenery from the county’s hilltop overlooking the river. Historic sites in the area are described by local historians, who also recount the story of the Cincinnati 28, who staged an audacious escape and then concealed in plain sight as they moved through Cincinnati.” The following is an excerpt from PBS Learning Media: The Underground Railroad: An Introduction (y) It is taught to students about the Underground Railroad and the reasons why slaves utilized it.

  • Classes in grades 1-2 In this lesson, students will study about natural and human-made signs that assisted slaves in finding their way north through the Underground Railroad during the American Civil War.
  • Classes in grades 1-2 In this lesson, students will learn how to identify slave states and free states during the time of the Underground Railroad, examine the difficulties of escape, and determine the path they would have traveled if they were on the run from slavery.
  • Guide for Educators (Y) Students in Grades 6-10 may learn about history using game-playing techniques.
  • Africa in America resource bank from PBS.org on the Underground Railroad (Y, M, O, T) and Africans in America.
  • In this article from History.com, we will discuss the Underground Railroad (Y, M, O and T).
  • Tours of the Underground Railroad (Y, M, O, and T) are available through the Friends of the First Living Museum.
  • Sites of the Underground Railroad in Indiana (Y, M, O, T) Indiana’s involvement with the Underground Railroad is detailed here.

During the years leading up to and during the Civil War, a large number of runaway slaves journeyed across the state of Indiana.

Teaching resources for students at three different levels.

Players in the Harriet Tubman Readers Theater (Y, M) To learn about Harriet Tubman, an American hero, and to learn about the Underground Railroad, a multiple-role reader’s theater script is used.

Kindergarten to fourth grade This is the story of William Still, who was a member of the Underground Railroad (Y, M, O, T).

Using Maryland as a Route to Freedom: The Underground Railroad in the State of Maryland (Y, M, O, T) Among the many resources available on this site are original source documents, historical events, museums, and individuals who operated on the Underground Railroad in Maryland.

Slaves and Underground Railroad conductors were both involved in the Underground Railroad (Y,M,O,T) Learn why and how slaves fled from their masters by utilizing the underground railroad, as well as who was in charge of running the railroad.

History Museum in Newton, Massachusetts (Y,M,O,T) In addition to permanent exhibitions, the Newton History Museum also hosts rotating exhibits on a range of historical themes.

The abolitionist movement in Newton and how the Jackson family utilized their home to serve as an Underground Railroad station are both covered in detail in this exhibit.

The John Brown Museum is located in the heart of the city (Y,M,O,T) In the midst of “Bleeding Kansas,” the Reverend Samuel Adair and his wife, Florella, were peaceful abolitionists who moved to Kansas and resided in Osawatomie, a thriving abolitionist settlement that was also a flashpoint for violence.

  1. Today, the cabin still exists on the location of the Event of Osawatomie, when John Brown and 30 free-state defenders faced 250 pro-slavery troops in 1856, and serves as a memorial to the battle.
  2. Levi Coffin House is a historic building in Levi, Pennsylvania (Y,M,O,T) This listed National Historic Landmark, which was erected in 1839 in the Federal style, served as a stop on the renowned Underground Railroad for fleeing slaves during the pre-Civil War era.
  3. During their 20-year residence in Newport, the Coffins were responsible for assisting more than 2,000 slaves to find safety.
  4. They will investigate the themes of slavery, respect, and giving of one’s time or skill in order to better the lives of others around them.

There’s a train coming, and you better get ready (Y,M) By studying the roles individuals played in the Underground Railroad, students will get an understanding of how charity is an important aspect of African American history and culture. Grades 3, 4, and 5

Teaching the Underground Railroad

In the United States of America’s history, the Underground Railroad operated during one of the most difficult periods in the country’s history. A dramatic episode involving freedom seekers travelling toward the northern United States and into Canada is depicted. Even though the Underground Railroad’s influence on freedom seekers and members of the Underground Railroad is well documented, the Underground Railroad’s long-term consequences after the Emancipation Proclamation are rarely discussed.

  1. Thousands of ordinary men and women of many ethnicities, faiths, and beliefs joined together to demand social justice, making it one of the most multicultural collaborative events and demonstrations in the history of the United States.
  2. It gave a chance for sympathizing Americans to contribute to the abolition of slavery in the United States.
  3. To learn more about the significance of the Underground Railroad, listen to Dr.
  4. Wright Museum of African American History/documentaries).
  • By selecting the resources mentioned under each topic, you may learn more about each of the subjects listed below. Make a list of the events and make a note of how they are connected to one another. Consider the dates of important events in your life in particular. After going over these events, you should be able to construct a more comprehensive picture of the Underground Railroad’s efforts. It should become clear how these occurrences are related to one another and what they mean
  • Use some type of technology to illustrate the link between these events and the Underground Railroad (e.g., word cloud, idea map—which requires basic membership to save) to illustrate the relationship between these events and the Underground Railroad.
See also:  How Did The Underground Railroad Effect Slavery In The South? (Correct answer)

“Before I arrived to this session, I was under the impression that I was well-versed in the fundamentals of this tough period in our history. Slaves and historical figures such as Harriet Tubman and Frederick Douglass are well-known to us. What I didn’t realize at the time was that there was a lot more to the Underground Railroad than the minimal facts I had gleaned through my schooling.” Summer 2013 Reflection by a University Student

  • The Underground Railroad and the Gullah/Geechee Nation
  • The Seminole History of the Gullah/Geechee Nation and the Underground Railroad
  • The Gullah/Geechee Nation’s Seminole History and the Underground Railroad
  • The Gullah: Rice Slavery, 7 the Sierra Leone-American Connection, and 8 the Gullah: Rice Slavery
  • Aboard the Underground Railroad: The British Fort
  • Florida’s Underground Railroad – Part 3
  • Rebellion: John Horse and the Black Seminoles
  • Black Seminoles
  • The Freedom Seeker
  • Aboard the Underground Railroad: The British Fort

“My amazement at learning how crucial Michigan and the Detroit region were in the Underground Railroad’s operations came as a surprise. Not even aware that Battle Creek served as a staging area for slaves attempting to escape to Canada.” Summer 2013 Reflection by a University Student Women’s Empowerment

  • The Underground Railroad Connection
  • Women in the Abolitionist Movement
  • The Underground Railroad Timeline
  • The Underground Railroad Connection


A connection to the Underground Railroad; women in the abolitionist movement; the Underground Railroad timeline story;

Teach Your Kids About . the Underground Railroad

It was a perilous voyage for slaves fleeing slavery in the southern states as they travelled north on the Underground Railroad, an underground network of people who opposed slavery and assisted the fugitives on their trek to Canada, where they could live free.

Please see the list below for more study materials to learn more about this time of history. Lesson Plans are a type of plan that is used to teach a subject.

  • An interactive lesson plan based on the Underground Railroad Teacher’s Guide, published by Scholastic: the lesson plan contains four “stops” where students may learn about different parts of the Underground Railroad journey through audio, video, and other interactive activities
  • Instructional Materials on the Underground Railroad – Lesson plans organized by grade level Lessons are in.doc format, which means they will download to your PC. Digital Classroom for the Underground Railroad– Contains lesson plans, handouts, virtual field excursions, a digital book shelf with movies and worksheets, and much, much more. Educators can use the Fort Pulaski National Monument as a starting point for their investigations on the life of African-American slaves during the Civil War. National Park Service’s Quest for Freedom: The Underground Railroad is a documentary on the Underground Railroad. There are various lessons connected to the abolition of slavery and the Underground Railroad included in this book. In Motion’s Runaway Journeys is a piece of music. Lesson plans for students in grades 6 and up about the migration of African-Americans are available. The material offered on the Runaway Journeys website was used to create this report. This resource comes from the Institute for Freedom Studies and is titled Teaching the Underground Railroad. Heritage Minutes has created lesson materials for grades K–9 about the Underground Railroad. Underground Railroad Heritage Minute lesson ideas for secondary grades
  • Henry’s Freedom Box lesson plans for secondary grades according to Scholastic – lesson plans and activities based on the children’s book of the same name

Figures of Influence Harriet Tubman (also known as “Tubman”) was an American woman who lived during the Civil War.

  • Debbie Musiek created the Harriet Tubman Unit, and the Tarsus Literary and Library Consulting created the Harriet Tubman Research Pathfinder.

William Still: I’d want to thank you for your service.

  • The William Still Story, courtesy of Public Broadcasting Service. William Still, an abolitionist, is featured in a video, lesson materials, and other resources.

Various Other Resources

  • Site of John Freeman Wells’s historical significance The Underground Railroad Museum is located in New York City. This museum is located in Puce, Ontario, which served as the subterranean railroad’s terminus. Uncle Tom’s Cabin has an interesting personal tale as well as photographs. Dresden is a town in the province of Ontario. Located on the grounds of the historic site is Rev. Josiah Henson, who served as the basis for the novel “Uncle Tom’s Cabin.” On Black History Canada, there is an article about the Underground Railroad. Lists of references and resources from all around the internet
  • Internet Resources for the Underground Railroad on CyberBee– A list of websites and other resources

Although there appears to be a lot of debate on whether quilt codes are true or not, here are some useful resources on the subject regardless of your opinion.

  • Crafting Your Own Quilt Pattern Board Gameby Deceptively Educational – Step-by-step instructions on how to craft your own quilt pattern board game
  • Quilt code patterns– an explanation of the patterns and what they signified
  • Quilt code patterns Quilt patterns and the Underground Railroad: the significance of patterns in history
  • Creating Your Own Secret Quilt Message from Pathways to Freedom is a fun and engaging online activity.
  • Mission US: Mission 2 – Flight to Freedom — an interactive online game in which you take on the role of 14-year-old Lucy King, who is attempting to flee slavery via the Underground Railroad
  • Mission US: Mission 2 – Flight to Freedom The Underground Railroad Interactive Game–a “choose your own adventure” style game in which you determine which steps to follow along your journey north
  • The Underground Railroad Interactive Game The Underground Railroad: Journey to Freedom is an interactive game in the manner of a 3D movie. This handbook is also accessible to educators in grades 6 through 10
  • Create a 3D representation of Harriet Tubman with Crayola Triarama
  • Create an Underground Railroad Lantern using Arkansas Civil War 150
  • And more.

A challenge presented by Ben and Me that will see bloggers publish their way through the alphabet over the course of 26 weeks will include a post on books. The letter U is represented here. Feel free to participate yourself, or simply to see what other people are writing about!

Journey on the Underground Railroad

Do you require more assistance with EL students? Try out theVocabulary in Contextpre-lesson activity first.

Learning Objectives

  • Students will be able to accurately apply terms connected to the Underground Railroad in a variety of situations.

It is a change to the whole group lesson that is made in order to distinguish for children who are English language learners. EL adjustments are made.

  • Inquire of pupils whether or not they are familiar with the Underground Railroad. Explain that the Subterranean Railroad was neither underground nor a railroad, as the name suggests. Slave escape was a word used to describe the hidden method by which slaves were able to escape slavery with the assistance of numerous individuals. “Have you ever utilized or made up a secret code before?” you might ask your pupils. Invite a few students to speak about their own personal experiences. Inform kids that the Underground Railroad used a code that was similar to a secret language. Special phrases were employed to keep the Underground Railroad concealed from slave owners, allowing slaves to talk about fleeing via the Underground Railroad without their masters realizing what they were talking about. Inform kids that they will be studying some of the particular vocabulary that was used to explain various components of the Underground Railroad today
  • Make the following concepts more understandable to students: “slavery,” “secret code,” “underground,” “railroad,” and “escaping.”


  • To provide the ELs with more context and background knowledge about the Underground Railroad, show them photographs linked to it.

Kids History: Underground Railroad

Civil War is a historical event that occurred in the United States. During the American Civil War, the phrase “Underground Railroad” was used to describe a network of persons, residences, and hiding places that slaves in the southern United States used to flee to freedom in the northern United States and Canada. Is it possible that there was a railroad? The Underground Railroad wasn’t truly a railroad in the traditional sense. It was the moniker given to the method by which individuals managed to flee.

  1. Conductors and stations are two types of conductors.
  2. Conductors were those who were in charge of escorting slaves along the path.
  3. Even those who volunteered their time and resources by donating money and food were referred to as shareholders.
  4. Who was employed by the railroad?
  5. Some of the Underground Railroad’s conductors were former slaves, such as Harriet Tubman, who escaped slavery by way of the Underground Railroad and subsequently returned to assist other slaves in their escape.
  6. They frequently offered safe havens in their houses, as well as food and other supplies to those in need.
  7. B.

What mode of transportation did the people use if there was no railroad?

Slaves would frequently go on foot during the night.

The distance between stations was generally between 10 and 20 miles.

Was it a potentially hazardous situation?

There were those trying to help slaves escape, as well as those who were attempting to aid them.

In what time period did the Underground Railroad operate?

It reached its zenith in the 1850s, just before the American Civil War.

How many people were able to flee?

Over 100,000 slaves are said to have fled over the railroad’s history, with 30,000 escaping during the peak years before the Civil War, according to some estimates.

This resulted in a rule requiring that fugitive slaves who were discovered in free states be returned to their masters in the south.

Slaves were now had to be carried all the way to Canada in order to avoid being kidnapped once more by the British.

The abolitionist movement began with the Quakers in the 17th century, who believed that slavery was incompatible with Christian principles.

Ducksters’ Lewis Hayden House is located in the town of Lewis Hayden. The Lewis Hayden House functioned as a station on the Underground Railroad during the American Civil War. Information on the Underground Railroad that is both interesting and educational

  • Slave proprietors wished to be free. Harriet Tubman, a well-known train conductor, was apprehended and imprisoned. They offered a $40,000 reward for information leading to her capture. That was a significant amount of money at the time
  • Levi Coffin, a Quaker who is claimed to have assisted around 3,000 slaves in gaining their freedom, was a hero of the Underground Railroad. The most usual path for individuals to escape was up north into the northern United States or Canada, although some slaves in the deep south made their way to Mexico or Florida
  • Canada was known to slaves as the “Promised Land” because of its promise of freedom. The Mississippi River was originally known as the “River Jordan” in the Bible
  • Fleeing slaves were sometimes referred to as passengers or freight on railroads, in accordance with railroad nomenclature
See also:  What State Was The Underground Railroad Located? (Perfect answer)


  • This page is the subject of a ten-question quiz
  • Listen to an audio recording of this page being read: You are unable to listen to the audio element because your browser does not support it
  • Learn about Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad by reading this article.

HistoryCivil WarHistoryCivil War Works Cited

The Underground Railroad – Teacher-Created Lesson Plan

How was it possible that the Underground Railroad was not made up of underground tunnels or that a railroad was not involved? Take a look at the video, Underground Railroad, provided by Shmoop (2:59; Chapter 13, Lesson 4). Reiterate that the term was associated with the underground resistance following the passage of the Fugitive Slave Act in 1850. (preceded by the Fugitive Slave Act of 1793). “Trains” (routes); “conductors” (guides); “passengers,” “cargo,” (escaped slaves); “stations” or “depots” (hiding spots); “agents” (complimenters); “station masters” (those who hid slaves in their homes); “heaven,” or “Promised Land” (the free states and Canada).

More than 300,000 slaves managed to escape from their masters between 1850 and 1860, using a sophisticated but well-organized network of routes, safe places, and helping persons.

Underground Railroad Lesson Plan

40 minutes, with an additional 40 minutes for physical exercise

Curriculum Standards

Decide on the core concepts or facts included in a primary or secondary source; produce an appropriate description of the source that is different from past knowledge or viewpoints

Key Vocabulary

  • Abolitionists
  • The American Civil War
  • The Fugitive Slave Act of 1850
  • The Fugitive Slave Act of 1793


  • As a prelude to this lesson, have your students study the landscape of early nineteenth-century America. Remind them that many Southerners held slaves, but many Northerners were opposed to the institution of slavery. After that, instruct pupils to observe the lesson. What Was the Underground Railroad and How Did It Work? – Information on the past and present Route
  • Following the completion of the video, consider the following questions:
  • The need of maintaining concealment in the Underground Railroad was explained in detail in the following passage: When you think about it, why do you believe ordinary railroad terms and phrases were employed as codewords? In your opinion, why do you believe quilt designs were so effective as means of communication? When it came to escaping slaves and their supporters, how was the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 worse than the Fugitive Slave Act of 1793?


With the help of this interactive website, you may travel the Underground Railroad.


Geographical Society of America (National Geographic Society of America) Hundreds of runaway slaves were escorted to Canada and freedom by the “Underground Railroad,” a hidden network of Northern abolitionists that operated in the nineteenth century. During their visit to this innovative and interactive exhibit, viewers are placed in the shoes of a Maryland slave contemplating his or her escape to Canada in 1850. The visitor is given the option of escaping or remaining enslaved; if they choose to flee, they are guided onto one of the Underground Railroad escape routes that runs via Wilmington, Delaware, and Philadelphia, across Lake Erie, and into Canada, and then back to the United States.

Music from African-American spirituals, bloodhounds pursuing runaway slaves, and the sound of a train may be heard at several locations along the escape path.

Nine class projects for high school students are available through a link to classroom ideas.

Visitors can make comments or questions concerning the Underground Railroad or the website on a forum, however because the forum link is not monitored or moderated, the relevance of the discussion threads varies from one visitor to the other.

Teaching the Underground Railroad: Lesson Plans

On this SiteAboutthe Teaching SummitLessonPlansPhotographs Literature
  • Minty – A Child’s Life in Slavery (MS Word document)
  • Minty – A Child’s Life in Slavery (MS Word document)
  • (MS Word document)
  • “Minty,” in three lessons:
  • Harriet Tubman (MS Word document)
  • Lesson One (a Microsoft Word document)
  • Lesson Two (a Microsoft Publisher document)
  • Lesson Three (a Microsoft Word document)
  • Reading:Underground AuntHarriet’s Railroad in the Sky (for 1st and 2nd graders) (Microsoft Word file)
  • Studies in social studies and language arts
  • Secret Signs
  • And “Freedom: Yesterday and Today,” which is divided into two parts:
  • UndergroundRailroad(MS Word document)
  • Yesterday and Today(MS PowerPoint presentation)
  • UndergroundRailroad(MS Word document).
  • Exercise with a Venn Diagram (MS Word document): readings: Aunt Harriet’s Underground Railroad in the Sky, Follow the Drinking Gourd
  • Venn Diagram exercise Readings: SweetClara and the Freedom Quilt
  • Freedom Quilt designs (in MS Word format)
  • SweetClara and the Freedom Quilt This lesson is divided into three parts: “Reading: Sequence, Main Events, and Theme.”
  • (MS Word document) UndergroundRailroad Book Activity
  • (MS Word document) UndergroundRailroad Direction Sheet
  • And (MS Word document) Underground Railroad Lesson Plan are all included in the UndergroundRailroad package.
  • (MS Word document) UndergroundRailroad Book Activity
  • (MS Word document) UndergroundRailroad Direction Sheet
  • And (MS Word document) Underground Railroad Lesson Plan are all included in the UndergroundRailroad activity pack.
  • Using Primary Sources (a Microsoft Word document)
  • Using Secret Signs (a Microsoft Word document)
  • What is a Hero? (Microsoft Word document)
  • Computer TechnologyWebquests(MS Word document)
  • Life as a Runaway(5th/6th grade) (MS Word document)
  • Computer TechnologyWebquests(MS Word document)
  • Computer TechnologyWebquests(MS Word document).
  • To Be a Slave (a Microsoft Word document) is recommended reading. What Would You Do in This Situation? Questions on Demand (in Microsoft Word format)
  • FugitiveSlave Law (for 9th and 10th graders)
  • “Freedom Quilts,” a course for 9th-12th graders that is divided into two parts:
  • Underground RailroadLesson Plan (MS Word document)
  • FreedomQuilts (MS Word document)
  • Underground RailroadLesson Plan (MS Word document)

William Still and the Underground Railroad Lesson Plan · William Still: An African-American Abolitionist

In this section, students will be requested to evaluate primary source texts that have been presented to them, as well as the viewpoints and historical background of the time period in which they live. 8.1.9.C.D:i. 8:3.9.D:i. Students will analyze how conflict and cooperation among people and organizations have influenced the growth and development of the United States. II. 8.3.9.D:ii OBJECTIVE It is expected that students would apply their understanding of the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850 in order to explain how Africans, both free and enslaved, managed their lives in a slave society.

  1. Students will also assess the role of the participants in the abolitionist movement in Philadelphia from the eighteenth century onward in order to track the growth of African Americans in their quest for freedom in the United States.
  2. As part of their efforts to remove slavery, students will assess the operations of Underground Railroad agents and abolitionists in the City of Philadelphia, as well as the impact of their activities on the state and national levels.
  3. A discussion and formulation of personal perspectives regarding the acts of people who participated in the Underground Railroad, as well as other African forms of resistance to slavery, will take place in this class.
  4. Materials include:a)Textbook Chapter 8: Let Your Motto Be Resistance, 1833-1850b)Assigned papers from theLinksontheInterneta) Website dedicated to William Still, an African American abolitionist.
  5. IV.
  6. Warm-up exercise – Explain to pupils that they will not be allowed to return home or communicate with their families and friends again, and that they will be sold to the highest bidder to work involuntarily for no compensation.
  7. iii.





The Life in Philadelphia series.

3.Advertisements for Runaway Slaves ii.

2.The Odyssey of Solomon Northrup VI.

They will be informed that there are laws in place that declare that they have no rights and that they must accept their position as slaves for the remainder of their natural life.

They are unable to possess property or provide testimony in court.

They are unable to perform religious services in the absence of a white present.

They are unable to travel unless given permission by their owner.

They are unable to get married.

Students should first talk about their thoughts about their position and the limits with a partner, and then they should talk about it as a group.

What was their attitude toward their current situation, and were they ready to accept it?

Examine slave advertising and tales with your pupils and ask them to examine them.

The instructor will read first-person narratives from William Still’s The Underground Railroad, which is set in the United States.

A mini-lecture on William Still, regarded as the “Father of the Underground Railroad,” will be delivered by the teacher following this.

What factors contributed to the institution of slavery remaining lawful in America for over 250 years?

What social, political, or economic circumstances made it possible for this to take place?

After reading through their main source paper, students should be able to answer the following questions as a group and report their results to the rest of the class; The publication date of this document is unknown.

3.For whom was this text written, and for what purpose?

5.Can you tell me why you believe the paper was created?

Seventh, what do you think this document tells you about American life at the time it was written?

Solon Northrup, a member of Group 11, is kidnapped and sold into slavery in the year 18412.

In 18414, Frederick Douglass begins his abolitionist, writer, and public speaker career, among other things.

In 1843, Sojourner Truth begins his abolitionist mission.

Group 21.

Dred Scott filed a lawsuit in the year 18473, requesting his release.

Harriet Tubman manages to elude enslavement and make her way to Philadelphia in 18495.

Group Number Thirty-One.

The Compromise of 18503 is passed by the United States Congress.

The novel Uncle Tom’s Cabin, written by Harriet Beecher Stowe, was first published in 18525.

Delany was published in 18526.

Group No.

In 18532, Frances Ellen Watkins Harper relocates to the city of Philadelphia.

In 18544, the Benjamin Banneker Institute is established in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

The Kansas-Nebraska Act, 1854VI, is approved by the United States Congress and President Franklin Pierce.

In addition, students learned how to collaborate with one another and present their results as a group after reading newspaper clippings from a historical event.

In order to appreciate how the legality of slavery influenced African resistance to slavery in the judicial systems at the state and federal levels, students must first understand what slavery was.

the battle for “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” by the world’s first large free Black population in the decades preceding and leading up to the American Civil War f)At the conclusion of the session, the instructor will ask the students to write down on a piece of paper one information they learnt today and one question they have about what they have discussed and completed in class as they are leaving.


The students will be invited to submit a letter to the City Council asking reform after the William Still and Black Life in 19th Century Philadelphia course, as if they were actually living in Philadelphia at the time.

The School District of Philadelphia uses this textbook as a teaching tool. African-American History, edited by Darlene Clark Hine, William C. Hine, and Stanley Harrold, published by Pearson Education, Inc., Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, New Jersey, in 2006.

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