Students study two maps of Montana Indian Reservation boundaries. They learn about the differences in American Indian territories past and present. Students compare maps of territories in the past and present.
This lesson is part of "Great States: Montana | Unit 3: American Indians" where students will investigate how American Indians were able to thrive before the arrival of Europeans and learn about their current concerns.
3.5: Use appropriate geographic resources (e.g., atlases, databases, charts, grid systems, technology, graphs, maps) to gather information about local communities, reservations, Montana, the United States, and the world.
4.7: Explain the history, culture, and current status of the American Indian tribes in Montana and the United States.
Helena District 3.5: Use maps, atlases, graphs, and charts to gather and interpret information about Montana, including Montana Indian reservations.
- Class set of American Indian Nations of Montana handout
- Map: Contemporary Montana
- An interactive whiteboard, projector, or another type of screen to show images to the class
- Explain to students that many American Indian nations once occupied the land that makes up Montana. There were nations such as the Blackfeet, Crow, and Sioux in the East, and the Kootenai, Shoshone, and Salish in the West. Distribute the associated handout, American Indian Nations of Montana, which compares two maps.
- Describe how one map shows American Indians in Montana in the 1800s, while the other map shows the map of present-day American Indian reservations in Montana.
- Project the Contemporary Montana map. This map shows the main cities and some landforms in the state. Keep this image up as students answer questions on the handout. Allow 5–10 minutes to finish.