Teacher’s Guide
















The Ghost Dance
No More Buffalo. No More Indian Nations.

The (Out)Laws & Justice teacher’s guide provides complete lesson plans that foster critical thinking and essential literacy skills.

Students will be able to:

  1. Examine the religious beliefs expressed in the Ghost Dance Religion
  2. Explain the events that led up to the Massacre at Wounded Knee

Focus questions

  1. How were the beliefs of the Ghost Dance Religion influenced by the conditions of the Plains Indians in the latter part of the nineteenth century?
  2. Why did white soldiers and settlers fear the Ghost Dance Religion?
  3. What factors contributed to the conflict at Wounded Knee

History-Social Science Content Standards

  1. Students analyze the transformation of the American economy and the changing social and political conditions in the United States in response to the Industrial Revolution.
  2. Identify the reasons for the development of federal Indian policy and the wars with American Indians and their relationship to agricultural development and industrialization. [The lesson addresses part of this standard.]

Historical and Social Science Analysis Skill Standards
Chronological and Spatial Thinking

  1. Students explain how major events are related to one another in time.
  2. Students construct various time lines of key events, people, and periods of the historical era they are studying.

Research, Evidence, and Point of View

  1. Students frame questions that can be answered by historical study and research.
  2. Students assess the credibility of primary and secondary sources and draw sound conclusions from them
  3. Students detect the different historical points of view on historical events and determine the context in which the historical statements were made.

Historical Interpretation

  1. Students explain the central issues and problems from the past.
  2. Students understand and distinguish cause, effect, sequence, and correlation in historical events.
  3. Students explain the sources of historical continuity and how the combination of ideas and events explains the emergence of new patterns.
  4. Students recognize the role of chance, oversight, and error in history.


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