This social studies lesson will help students analyze historical events from the point of view of participants. Students will learn about the speedwell and mayflower’s trip to the new world and understand the hardships of the pilgrims. This is a great lesson for fall or anytime.
The trip of the Speedwell and the Mayflower
Level: – Grade 3-5
Students will learn about the speedwell and mayflower’s trip to the new world.
Students will understand the hardships of the Pilgrims.
-Ask the students what they know about the mayflower. Then ask them if they knew that there were actually two ships that were supposed to make the trip, and that the mayflower didn’t end up where it was supposed to end up.
– Tell the story about the Mayflower and the Speedwell and their trip to the new world. The Mayflower and the Speedwell were two ships that were going to make the trip to the new world. The Speedwell was a ship that was bought in Holland and the Mayflower was an old ship that was used to transport wine between England and France. They both set sail but the Speedwell that didn’t make it because it leaked so bad that it had to turn around.
The Mayflower, carrying 102 passengers, finally got under way from Plymouth, England, on September 16, 1620. The ship was headed for Virginia, where the colonists had permission to settle. As a result of stormy weather, the vessel failed to make good its course, and the Mayflower rounded the end of Cape Cod on November 21 and dropped anchor off the site of present-day Provincetown, Massachusetts. (www.Encarta.com)
-To let students know how crammed it was in the ship, have students experience how exactly how small an area they had to fit in.
-Have a masking taped area in the classroom that will depict l/8th of the size of the May flower-8 ft X 14ft. Then bring 13 children into the rectangle. Have them sit down and tell them that if they were Pilgrims on board, they’d have to survive and deal with confined space like this for three months. No running around.
-To help them remember what happened, have them sing the song.
– Have students answer oral questions about what they have learned:
1. What were the name of the two ships that were to set sail?
2. Why didn’t the Speedwell make the trip?
3. Did the Mayflower make their destination? Why or why not?
The Speedwell and Mayflower song
(to the tune of Clementine)
Oh the speedwell, and the mayflower
Set sail for about a week.
But they ran into some problems
When their boat sprang a leak.
Oh the speedwell, oh the speedwell Could no longer make the trip
And all the men and all the women Loaded on to the famous ship.
Oh the mayflower, oh the mayflower They went in the right way.
But it ran into storm And it led them far astray.
All the pilgrims, all the pilgrims
Finally made it in one piece.
Though they missed their destination,
None of them were deceased.