K-12 Educators

Third Grade Interactive Local History Outreach Program

Third Grade EducationMidway Village Museum’s award winning outreach program will engage 3rd grade students by providing hands-on learning experiences related directly to life in Northern Illinois from its early settlement days to the present. The curriculum focus is on the primary social studies unit of what makes up a community.

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To learn about how this program can integrate into your curriculm, download this PDF file to assist Third_Grade_Curriculm_Standards_for_Educators.

This unique local program is rich in history and structured with four learning opportunities for the students meeting the Illinois Learning Standards. Instruction for the program is provided by museum trained historical interpreters dressed in period clothing.

This outreach program is designed to solve the teacher’s challenge of not enough time to teach local history in the classroom. The four program concepts last 90 minutes and interpreters bring hands-on objects and materials for each student to use. While each of the four programs can be presented alone, it is recommended that each class schedule at least two sessions (topics) for a well-rounded experience. Teachers can choose programs in any particular order. These programs meet Illinois State Standards and National Social Studies Curriculum Standards 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 & 7.

The program topics are as follows:

Creating Community

In this unit students will learn the importance of a community working together such as:

  • Who and what makes up a community
  • How a community is designed from surveying (math skills) to necessary buildings

Practice map skills and identify home and school direction using hands-on materials

The lesson will include historical maps of northern Illinois, measuring tools, graphing activities, books, vocabulary, neighborhood mosaics and crafts.

Local Life

The key component of this unit is how northern Illinois was founded and by whom. The students will learn:

  • The importance of the key historic community leaders
  • The Rock River as an important local resource
  • Distances and how long it took to get from here to there as well as making a local history Mandela using circular geometry
  • Through local historical photographs, students will realize how much northern Illinois has changed over the past 175 years

This lesson will include primary source documents, photographs, artifacts, timeline activities, books, journals, vocabulary words, crafts and music of the times.

Many Faces of Illinois: Immigrants and Culture

This unit will cover the time period from early Illinois to present time, comparing how the immigrant experience has changed and how it remains the same. The lessons will include:

  • Various groups of immigrants who came to northern Illinois
  • Why people chose this area and the types of jobs available
  • Famous Illinoisans
  • Various immigrant customs and traditions that have become a part of our local life
  • The Orphan Trains

This lesson will include primary source documents, immigrant artifacts, books, tables and crafts, music, immigrant crafts and vocabulary skills.

How did I get here and what will I do now: A Look at Transportation, Jobs and Economics

Students will learn about different forms of transportation and how it affected the way local people lived in the past. The students will learn about:

  • Transportation on land, water and in the air
  • How the arrival of the railroads brought about standardized time zones
  • The effect of transportation on industries from early agriculture and factories to today’s service industries
  • How we have used music to express ourselves in relation to labor
  • Local business leaders and inventors

This lesson will include photographs of various local industries and laborers to evaluate and discover what we learned from them, work songs, artifacts, time charts and vocabulary skills.


Cost for the above programs is $120 per classroom per visit

Reservations & Curriculum Questions

For more information on curriculum and program content contact our Museum Educator at 815-397-9112 ext 106. To schedule a program, please use our Tour Request Form. If you are having difficulties with the form, please send your request with all information to educator@midwayvillage.com.