Maps and surveying played a significant role during the American Civil War. This lesson uses maps and newspapers that illustrate multiple aspects of the war, including slavery, secession, and the importance of rivers and railroads.

  • Grade Levels: 7-12
  • Time Allotment: 55 to 65 minutes for classroom visits; 90 to 100 minutes for field trips
  • ME Social Studies Standards
    • C1: Economic Knowledge, Concepts, Themes, and Patterns
    • C2: Individual, Cultural, Internation, and Global Connections in Economics
    • D1: Geographic Knowledge, Concepts, Themes, and Patterns
    • E1: Historical Knowledge, Concepts, Themes, and Patterns


Intended to be completed in the classroom before the scheduled field trip or class visit, the pre-teaching activity will give students some familiarity with the terms, ideas, and visuals, that they will see during the actual visit.

Guided Inquiry Exercise

During this portion of the visit, students will be asked to look closely at twelve to twenty maps that fit within the curriculum theme. Each student will need to find:

  1. something they recognize from previous class lessons or from the pre-teaching activity
  2. something they find interesting and want to point out to their classmates
  3. something they would like to know more about

Examples of Maps Used:
(sets of maps will vary)


OML visit themes have recommended hands-on activities or group-games that can be done in conjunction with the Guided Inquiry exercise.


Schedule a Field Trip or Class Visit