Houghton Mifflin Social Studies
America Will Be

Lacrosse — An Iroquois Game, Then and Now

Objectives: Students examine the sport of lacrosse from its beginnings to the present and create a class book.

What You Need:

Suggested Time:
4-5 hours over 2-3 days

Building Background:
Ask students what they know about the sport of lacrosse. Build on their responses to tell the class that the game was developed by Native Americans long before the first Europeans arrived in North America. The sport is still a very important part of Native American community and religious life. Inform students that European settlers adopted the game in the early 1800s. A modern version of the sport is played in many high schools and universities today. Tell students that they will be researching lacrosse and creating a class book about the sport.

What To Do:

1. Work with the class to develop research topics about lacrosse. Possible topics may include:

Divide the class into research groups and assign topics.

2. Have the groups research their topics in the school or public library.

Students should use the Researching Lacrosse worksheet to organize their research.

3. When the groups have finished their research, gather the class, and remind them that they will create a class book about lacrosse. Remind them that each group needs to decide how it wants to present the information it found in the class book. Write the words essay, list, chart, timeline, and diagramon the chalkboard. Discuss with students examples of how their information might be expressed in each of these different formats. Encourage them to be creative. Have each group choose a format for their information. Finally, decide about how many pages each group will need to present their information.

4. Have the groups organize and present their research in the format they selected. Remind students to make sure that their designed pages present their material in an clear, easy-to-understand manner. You might want to go around to each group as they work to answer questions and resolve issues.

5. Once the groups have completed their reports, work with the entire class to determine the best format for the completed book. Choose a title for the book and compile the pages.

Ask students to share one fact they learned about the Iroquois and lacrosse that surprised them the most about the game of lacrosse.


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