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Let's Learn About the Westward Expansion


After the Revolutionary War, the United States grew at an amazing rate. Many pioneers packed up their belongings and moved west. This unit on the Westward includes reading passages, organizers, character studies, vocabulary posters, timeline, map activities, a unit test, and more!

Your students will learn all about the Westward Expansion with information about:

  • The Westward Expansion
  • The Louisiana Purchase
  • The Erie Canal
  • The Alamo
  • The Pony Express
  • The Oregon Trail
  • The Gold Rush
  • Important Inventions: Telegraph, Steam Locomotive, and Steamboat
  • Lewis and Clark Expedition 

With Character Studies about:

  • Meriwether Lewis
  • William Clark
  • Sacagawea
  • President Thomas Jefferson


Activities Included:

✔Comprehension Questions

✔Pacing Guide with Video Links to YouTube

✔Map Activities (4)

✔Spotlight on Vocabulary

✔Timeline Activity

✔Graphic Organizers (5)

✔Character Mini-booklets (4)

✔Create a Trading Card Project (4)

✔Timeline Activity

✔Flip-Book (5-Pages)

✔Writing Prompt

✔Mystery Flaps Activity

✔Vocabulary Posters

✔Spotlight on Vocabulary

✔Hidden Fact Sort (compare/contrast activity)

✔Vocabulary Flip Flaps

✔Unit Test with an EDITABLE VERSION


There are three main activities:
Introduce the vocabulary words with the real-life photo posters included. You could post these posters around the classroom and have students travel around to match up and define the words in their flip flaps or use as a center activity. These colorful posters have been recently updated in 2017!!

Reading passages:
Have students read the informational articles about the Lewis and Clark Expedition. Each article has questions and scenes for students to connect and color. Next, read the character studies where students will meet Lewis, Clark, Sacagawea, and Thomas Jefferson. The character studies come in color and black and white for students to color. You could have students work with a partner or in small groups. These could also be used as a center or learning station activity.

Student Activities:
There is a custom-created graphic organizer to highlight key information, and use for review. Have students complete the Map Activity, and Lewis and Clark Mini-booklet. Plus, there's a 5 page Flip Book with a cloze passage, timeline activity, important items, and four facts about Lewis and Clark. I usually have students complete the pages of the flip booklet at a station or as a center activity. Then we build the pages of the book one by one. The booklets fit perfectly inside their interactive notebooks or as a stand-alone booklet. You could fold a 12x18 piece of construction paper in half to make a cover for the book.

Meets SS4H6 - Students will explain the westward expansion of America between 1801 and 1861.
a. Describe territorial expansion with emphasis on the Louisiana Purchase and Lewis and Clark expedition.
b. Describe the impact of westward expansion on America

This is a Digital Download. No Physical Product will be shipped. 


  • These specific files are ©2018 Heart 2 Heart Teaching, LLC. All rights reserved.
    • For personal use, classroom use, and non-commercial use only. It is unlawful to distribute any part of this file for any reason (whether they are free or for purchase).
  • Clipart, graphics, photographs, found inside this product are copyrighted. They may not be extracted from this file without written permission from the original artist(s).
  • We'd love to see how you use these activities in your classroom--- Tag @heart2heartteaching on Instagram!


How will I receive my download?
Once purchased, you will first receive an order confirmation email. Right after that, you receive a separate email with a link that you will click to download the zipped file. You will receive one or more PDF files.

What if I can't find the email with the Printable in it?
If you're using Gmail as your mail service, be sure to check the "spam," "promotions," and "updates" folders/tabs! Your email will be sent via our automated system (omitting the potential for human error) so if you ordered the download and entered the correct email address, you can be sure it's in your email somewhere!

What's a ZIP file?

Many of our resources are in a compressed ZIP file. A ZIP file is a compressed folder with multiple files. A ZIP file takes up less storage space making it easier to download. ZIP files are able to be opened easily, just follow the steps below depending on your system. 

For Microsoft Windows:

  1. Right click  on the ZIP folder
  2. Choose Extract All from the menu
  3. Choose a place to save the file
  4. Click Extract

For Google Chrome:

  1. After it finishes downloading
  2. Click on the download box at bottom left of the browser page 
  3. Click Extract All at the top of the page

For Mac Users:

  1. Double click on the ZIP folder
  2. The file should automatically extract

Other Options--try opening the ZIP file using one of these free websites:

Where do I print my download?
For BEST RESULTS, print the posters on the premium brochure and flyer paper from Office Depot. Using this paper gives the posters a vibrant look that really makes the colors pop! Or send the file to a print shop. But don't worry about that if you need these quickly! Just print on regular paper on the best quality setting on your printer.

Having Printing Issues?  

Many of our files are PDF’s are large units with a lot of graphics and photographs. Sometimes, it may look fine on your screen, but may not print out correctly. If you’re having trouble printing a PDF, please be sure that you're opening the PDF with the latest version of Adobe Acrobat Reader

After downloading and installing Adobe Acrobat Reader:

  1. Open the PDF
  2. Click Print
  3. Select Shrink oversized pages
  4. Click Advanced
  5. Check the box: Print As Image
  6. Click Print