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Teaching Guides

To create our Teaching Guides, the ALPLM education department works with our expert historians to provide background information using up-to-date and relevant scholarship within the field. Each guide includes key instructional context and suggested activities to further student understanding.


Teaching the Gettysburg Address

Although the Gettysburg Address took President Lincoln only two minutes to deliver, the speech lives in collective American memory. Because of the speech’s popularity, and its place in American memory, it is easy to fall into teaching myth or to single out parts of the speech without providing students adequate context to understand the significance of the speech at the time — and its legacy over time. The Teaching the Gettysburg Address guide, which includes a curated collection of records from our holdings, provides the necessary context to enrich your students’ understanding of the Gettysburg Address.

African-American History in Illinois

In this section, we recognize the significant contributions of African Americans to the history of Illinois. We further share the (often untold) story of the 1908 Springfield Race Riot when racial division and inequality, coupled with fear and resentment, led to uncontrolled violence.

Goodbye to Springfield: Lincoln’s Farewell Address

Goodbye to Springfield highlights one of Abraham Lincoln's most moving speeches. Includes lesson plans and student activities based on life in Springfield, the president-elect's farewell address, and the Lincoln family’s move to our nation's capital in 1861.

To Kill and to Heal: Weapons and Medicine of the Civil War

Using weapons and medicine as foci for understanding, To Kill and To Heal explores the technological differences between the North and South and the effect these differences would have on the outcome of the Civil War. In addition to providing significant background information, this guide includes lesson plans that can be modified to accommodate a variety of grade levels.

Want to Know More About President Lincoln or Illinois?

If you notice a sticking point in your Lincoln- or Illinois-related instruction, or just have a topic under those umbrellas that you would like to know more about, please email the Education Department and let us know! We keep a running list of projects and would love to add your idea.

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