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Quilting Through the Civil War and Underground Railroad


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Keywords: paired work, writing, civil war, underground railroad, math, quilts, reading, social studies, american history
Subject(s): History, English/Language Arts, Social Studies, Photography
Grades 5 through 6
School: Bald Knob Middle School, Bald Knob, AR
Planned By: Lisa Martin
Original Author: Lisa Martin, Bald Knob
This is an activity that follows a Civil War and Underground Railroad Unit. The class will make a quilt like the ones used in the Underground Railroad in the 1860's.


1. First the students will discuss the Civil War in depth.

2. After they have a good working knowledge of the Civil War and Underground Railroad, students will look at quilts from the Civil War and how they were used to help slaves escape to freedom.

3. Pairs of students will photograph environment items such as ones that were used in freedom quilts (such as animals, sky, eater, colors, shapes, etc).

4. Students will take photo squares and design their quilt square using their knowledge of how everything had a meaning in the quilts of the past.

5. Students will take felt squares with felt pieces to make their design.

6. Students will put all squares together to make a quilt.

7. Quilts will be put on display for school.
Materials: Worksheets, Slideshow, Social Studies, Math, Flash/USB Drives, Batteries, Camera Bags, Point and Shoot
Other Items: 100 various colors felt, $1.50 each, total of $150.00
100 felt squares, $1.50 each, total of $150.00
10 bottles felt glue, $3.00 each, total of $30.00