The Mechanics of War
Science and Language Arts Activity
In this activity, students research and report on the tools and devices (machinery, weapons, transportation, etc.) in use at the time of the American Civil War.
WHAT YOU NEED
- Reference materials on the Civil War period
- Drawing materials
WHAT TO DO
- Ask teams of students to study text, photographs, and drawings of the Civil
War period and brainstorm lists of machinery, tools, and devices in use at the
time. The possibilities include cannons, rifles, trains, ironclads, transports, ships,
medical tools, submarines, and cameras.
- Have students work individually or in pairs to look up information on one
such device. They are to use what they learn to make an oral presentation,
using visuals to explain the workings of the device. If possible, the visual
should include a cutaway drawing.
Students can go on to place the device they are researching in time by making a
comparison to earlier and later stages of development, thus creating a visual
Those students with an interest in costume and fashion can create a similar
timeline for uniforms and civilian dress.
Students can research changes in medical care that has benefited those wounded
in war. They might approach this by reading and reporting on the life of the
individuals who initiated the changes, such as Clara Barton. Other possibilities: other 19th-century people who developed or introduced anesthesia, penicillin, antibiotics, and similar aids to healing.
Activity Search |
Reading Center |
Math Center |
Social Studies Center
Education Place |
You may download, print and make copies of this page for use in your classroom, provided that you include the copyright notice shown below on all such copies.
Copyright © 1998 Houghton Mifflin Company. All Rights Reserved.