The Louisiana Purchase

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Language Arts, Reading, Reading Comprehension, Social Studies, United States History

Grade 5- 8


Students will demonstrate fluency and comprehension in reading historically based text.



  1. Reproduce and distribute The Louisiana Purchase (pages 5-8). Review pre-reading skills by briefly reviewing text and encouraging students to underline as they read, make marginal notes and list questions, and highlight unfamiliar words.
  2. Assign the reading as classwork or homework. Allow adequate time for students to finish.
  3. Talk about these discussion questions or others of your choosing with the students.
  • Why would the United States want the Louisiana territory?
  • Should a president break the law or "bend" the Constitution to accomplish his goals?
  • What might have happened if France had not sold the Louisiana territory to the United States?

Have students complete the reading comprehension quiz entitled The Louisiana Purchase (page 15). Correct and evaluate the quiz for student understanding.


  • copies of The Louisiana Purchase (pages 5-8--see below)
  • copies of reading comprehension quiz entitled The Louisiana Purchase Quiz (page 15--see below)
  • additional reading selections from books, encyclopedia, and Internet sources for enrichment

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