Amistad Primary Source Analysis Activity

Grade Levels
7th - 11th
Resource Type
Formats Included
  • PDF
9 pages
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This excellent activity for the famous Amistad case is an excellent way to get your students to engage with primary source documents and learn about this fascinating moment in American History!

This download includes a 1-page introduction reading that explains all about the case of the Amistad, from the capture of Africans in Sierra Leone through to the Supreme Court case. There are then 6 excellent primary source documents for your students to analyze. Each includes an actual image of the document along with a typed, easy-to-read transcription of the text. Additionally, each includes a QR code that links to a full-color online high-resolution version of the document. Great for getting your students to put their devices to educational use in class!

Finally, there is a worksheet that students complete based on the documents that can be done in cooperative learning groups or individually. A brief directions page explains how I use the resource in my classes.

An editable Google Doc version of the lesson and complete answer key are both included for your convenience.

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Total Pages
9 pages
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
1 hour
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to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of primary and secondary sources, attending to such features as the date and origin of the information.
Determine the central ideas or information of a primary or secondary source; provide an accurate summary of how key events or ideas develop over the course of the text.
Compare the point of view of two or more authors for how they treat the same or similar topics, including which details they include and emphasize in their respective accounts.
Assess the extent to which the reasoning and evidence in a text support the author’s claims.
Compare and contrast treatments of the same topic in several primary and secondary sources.


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