California Gold Rush Webquest: What did the California Gold Rush Really Cost?

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California Gold Rush Webquest: What did the California Gold Rush Really Cost? (Consumer Price Index Activity)

Students will gain knowledge about the California Gold Rush by completing an internet-based worksheet. This webquest uses a consumer price index website to help students understand the “real cost” of the California Gold Rush in modern money. Your students will be shocked that miners had to pay over $60 for a loaf of bread or over $3000 for boots in 1849! My students love this webquest because it takes those low prices from the 1800s and makes them into real numbers they can understand. This webquest will help your students understand inflation and real cost. Your students will understand the opportunities and expense of the California Gold Rush. Many of my students referred to this webquest as we learned about later events in Westward Expansion.

The CPI index used is:

The webquest contains 30 questions and is a great way to introduce or reinforce information about the California Gold Rush. An answer sheet is included for the teacher. The webquest takes at least 50 minutes, but could be shorter or longer depending on the age level of your students. Feel free to modify this activity if needed to fit the needs of your students.

This lesson plan is in the following collection:
American West and Westward Expansion Lesson Plan Collection

Please take a look at some of my other Westward Expansion lesson plans.

Individual Westward Expansion lesson plans:

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California Gold Rush Webquest
California Gold Rush Webquest: What did it really cost?
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Writing Activities/Journals
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Please check out my other lesson plan collections:
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Texas Revolution: History and Geography Lesson Plans
California Gold Rush Lesson Plan Collection
Shifting Power on the Plains: Native American and Settler Perspectives
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American History and United States Geography Collection (History Wizard)
American History, World History, and Geography Collection (History Wizard)

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The History Wizard
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Answer Key
Teaching Duration
50 Minutes

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California Gold Rush Webquest: What did the California Gol
California Gold Rush Webquest: What did the California Gol
California Gold Rush Webquest: What did the California Gol
California Gold Rush Webquest: What did the California Gol