Philanthropic Michiganians of the Civil War

3, 4, 5

Students will investigate and acquire information about acts of philanthropy that occurred in Michigan during the Civil War era.

Lesson Rating 
PrintSeveral Thirty to Forty-Five Minute Class Periods or ongoing (during the Civil War unit)

The learner will:

  • acquire information from books, computer programs, etc., to determine what acts of philanthropy were done by the people of Michigan during the Civil War.
  • organize and present their information on a chart, graph, map, or timeline.
  • interpret the importance of the information they collect.
  • Access to tradebooks and/or reference books. It will also be helpful if students have access to a computer with an encyclopedia or history program. The computer may be with or without internet access. Other materials will vary according to the presentation format chosen by the teacher and/or students.
  • Materials for presentation may include paper, posterboard or art materials.

Civil War Preservation Trust: Education


  1. Anticipatory Set: Teacher asks students the question: "What role did Michigan have in the Civil War?"

  2. Provide direct instruction to students in order to show them how to use the library, how to look up information in books, encyclopedia, on computers, or the Internet. Direct instruction for the accepted format for citing sources will also be necessary.

    • Each student (or group of students) will be responsible for contributing one (or more) pieces of information.
    • Have students display their information via a brief written description of the act of philanthropy and a picture (drawn and/or colored by the student.)
    • Place information on the classroom timeline, in a class book, on a graph, etc. at the discretion of the teacher
    • Each student or group will have an opportunity to share their findings with the class.

The students will create a picture that represents the information they acquire as a result of their research. They will write one or two complete sentences to describe the picture. Students will also need to cite the source of their information, using one of the generally accepted forms for bibliographic references.

Cross Curriculum 

Students will conduct research through books, computer technology, or other means. This information will be collected and presented in one of several selected formats. (See second bullet in Objectives above.)

Philanthropy Framework

  1. Strand PHIL.I Definitions of Philanthropy
    1. Standard DP 01. Define Philanthropy
      1. Benchmark E.3 Recognize that citizens have a responsibility for the common good as defined by democratic principles.
  2. Strand PHIL.II Philanthropy and Civil Society
    1. Standard PCS 01. Self, citizenship, and society
      1. Benchmark E.5 Identify one local citizen who has helped the community through giving and/or service.
    2. Standard PCS 05. Philanthropy and Government
      1. Benchmark E.9 Describe how philanthropic activities can bring about social change.