Elementary Unit 3 US History

Office of Native Education Branding


Freeing the Elwha
This unit features four lessons from the Freeing the Elwha Curriculum

Note: Some links may not be active in the lesson plans developed by the National Park Service.

Corresponding Videos

Native Homelands Along the Lewis and Clark Trail

Contemporary Voices Along the Lewis and Clark Trail

Legacy for Us Today Elwha

Historical Era

1780 - Present

STI Unit Overview

The Freeing the Elwha Curriculum is an inquiry and standards based, integrated curriculum designed to guide middle school students in understanding the natural and manmade processes involved in river restoration. The removal of two dams from the Elwha River began September 2011, and is historic as it is the biggest dam removal project in the world. The Elwha River flows through the beautiful Olympic National Park, in Washington, and is unique in having been largely protected from adverse human impacts. When the dams come out, the Elwha River will once again host its famous salmon runs. The curriculum focuses on this historic event.

Unit Instructional Materials

The following instructional materials accompany all of the lessons

STI Essential Questions

  1. What were the political, economic, and cultural forces that led to the treaties?
  2. What are the ways in which tribes respond to the threats and outside pressure to extinguish their cultures and independence?

Standards for Social Studies, English Language Arts, Environmental and Sustainability Education, and Social Emotional Learning

OSPI-Developed Assessments for Social Studies

Unit Developed By

Shana Brown (Yakama descendent)
Based on lessons adapted from the National Park Service Freeing the Elwha Curriculum.