simplebooklet thumbnail

The Pony Express

The Pony Express
Lesson Objective
Students will learn about the Pony Express and develop mapping skills.
Background Information for Teacher
Student Prior Knowledge
Colored pencils
Step-by-Step Guided Lesson
Step 1: Start Video
(Tips: Interact with the video by pausing, to ask questions or discuss information viewed with student.)
Step 2: Teach Lesson
How do you get home? Is it a well known or marked path? What would happen if they didn't know where they were going?
Explain to the student that the need for maps has been around for a long time. Explain that the first mail service was through the
Pony Express and how their path was marked.
Discuss the Pony Express video from Step 1.
Explain to the student that they will be making a large map that shows the route they travel from home to their favorite location.
These routes can be walking or car routes, whichever the student prefers.
Before the student begins their map, suggest that they bring a small notebook and a pencil with them on their next walk or bus trip
from home to their favorite location. Encourage them to jot down the names of important streets along the way and to add landmarks
such as parks, stores, and fire and police stations. Have the student keep in mind that their maps should be simple. Too much detail
might be confusing.
After completing the map, have the student mark the route from home to their favorite location with a colored line, add a compass
rose to show directions, and draw a map key that shows what any symbols mean.
Before turning in the mapl, have the student show it to a friend or relative and ask them to describe the route out loud. An example
might be "Go west when you leave your house. Walk a block past the park, etc." The students might find out at this step that they
may have to make some modifications.
For an added challenge: When the students map is complete, have the student create a couple more maps and then use their
individual maps along with a town or city map to create one large map that shows each route from home to different locations.
Remind the student to include a compass rose and a map key. Display the map on a bulletin board and use it to teach map skills.
The student will have more fun practicing this skill when they recognize places on the map.
Step 3: Complete the worksheet attached below.
Worksheet for extra practice
Step 4: Review. Start the next lesson with the game or activity attached below for review so the student can demonstrate
understanding of this lesson before moving forward.
Plan your trip (online) game