painted mural of native american scene, farm scene, and factory scene

These six activities were inspired by the three murals, in our Change in the Making program map activity, that examine how Lowell’s landscape changed over time from native settlement to colonial farm to industrial city.

Activity #1

Students look closely at the three large pictures (native settlement, colonial farm, industrial city) to find the corresponding picture/vocabulary from the word-bank. Great for English Language Learners.

Activity #2

Students examine the three pictures that show how Lowell’s landscape changed over time, from native settlements to colonial farms to industrial city, and respond to the following questions:

  • What do you notice?
  • What do you wonder?
  • How are the images similar?
  • How are they different?
  • What clues do the pictures give us as to how each group of people live their daily lives?
    1. Image 1: Pennacook Native Americans, 1580-1600
    2. Image 2: Colonial Farmers, 1750
    3. Image 3: Mill Workers, 1850
  • How did the way people used this land change over time?

Activity #3

Students choose one of the pictures and write a story about what it might be like if they “jumped” into the picture. Writing Prompt: What would you see, hear, smell, touch, and taste?

Activity #4

Students write a 6-word story that tells the reader what would it be like to live in the time depicted in the pictures.

Sample Responses:

  • “Different people used land very differently.”
  • “Deer ran, cows ate, factories everywhere.”
    • Modifications:
      1. Choose to use one image instead of all three.
      2. Instead of a 6-word story or sentence, students write down 6 words describing each image and then write a one sentence story about each picture.

Activity #5

Using the pictures for inspiration, students write a short story or poem about how the land use changed over time. They should include a person or people in each time period (E.g., a young Pennacook boy, a girl living on a farm, and a young woman working in the mills.) Imagine what that person’s life might have been like in each time period.

Sample Response:

Native Americans farmed and fished,

Colonists came with just one wish,

To own the land all on their own,

Their cattle grazed, their seeds were sown,

Until factories came and bought the land,

Controlled the rivers and hired hands,

The land has changed yes, it's true,

Now a park is here for me and you.

Activity 6

This matching activity asks students to look closely at the three pictures, read three short descriptions, and then match the correct picture with the correct description.