Official Nebraska Government Website Nebraska State Historical Society

Nebraska Trailblazer #3: Oregon Trail
Suggested Activities

General Activities:

1. Use KWL charts (columns of "what do you know," "what do you want to learn," and "what have you learned") to direct the learning.

2. Pupils color the Nebraska Trailblazer picture, "Making Camp On the Trail: Along the Platte River," pupils write a short story describing an experience they might have had at that time. Use Resource Sheet 1 for an overhead transparency or to make coloring page copies for your students.

3. Pupils pretend to be a family in Indiana trying to decide whether or not to journey West to make a new home. What are some things that the family might consider before making the move?

4. Using the Oregon Trail diary excerpts from the Resource Sheet 2, pupils make shadow boxes to interpret the experience of travelers on the Oregon Trail.

5. Pupils can make papier mache' models of Chimney Rock, Courthouse Rock, and Scotts Bluff.

6. If available, pupils could make use of the "Oregon Trail" computer program.

Map Activities:

1. On the Nebraska Trailblazer map entitled "Places You Can Visit on the Oregon Trail," pupils can illustrate the following landmarks found in the Nebraska Trailblazer:

Chimney Rock
Courthouse Rock
Scotts Bluff
Ash Hollow
Rock Creek Station

Research Activities:

1. Pupils could research, illustrate, and write reports on the following topics:

Fort Laramie
Fort Kearny
Rock Creek Station
Nebraska City
Mormon Handcarts
Scotts Bluff
Chimney Rock
Courthouse Rock
Ash Hollow
O'Fallon's Bluff
Prairie Schooner
Mormon Trail
Oregon Trail

2. Using the same topics, pupils could pretend they were traveling on the Oregon Trail and keep a journal or diary of their experiences. Pupils may examine pages from an actual diary using Resource Sheet 3 and write on paper styled from that period using Resource Sheet 4.

Field Trips:

1. Visit an Oregon Trail site near you!


NSHS Home  |  Search  |  Index  |  Top
Last updated 23 February 1999

For questions or comments on the website itself, email
Nebraska State Historical Society - P.O. Box 82554, 1500 R Street, Lincoln, NE 68501
Nebraska State Government Homepage
 |  Website Policies  |  © 2009 All Rights Reserved