Log In

Bite-Sized History - Westward Expansion and the Homestead Act - Self-Paced

Nicole Trusky
Average rating:
Number of reviews:
The American West was populated by more than cowboys and tumbleweeds! Learn about the Homestead Act, single pioneer women on the frontier, African American pioneers, Chinese Immigrants, and more!

Class Experience

4 lessons//4 Weeks
 Week 1
Lesson 1
The Homestead Act of 1862
In this class, we'll discuss the Homestead Act, why it was created and what it entailed, why families chose to take advantage of it, what hurdles they faced once they reached their plot of land, the successes and failures of the Act, how speculators took advantage of it, and what damage the move west caused, particularly to the Native Americans who were already settled on the land.
 Week 2
Lesson 2
Single Pioneer Women in the American West
In this class we'll discuss the reasons women moved west, the hardships they faced, their triumph over the pioneer hazards they found, and the overall impact of pioneer life on women and girls. We'll discuss several pioneer women and their lives on the frontier, including Elinore Pruitt Stewart, one of the most well-known single pioneer women.
 Week 3
Lesson 3
Exodusters: African American Pioneers in Kansas
In this class we will discuss the way in which the Homestead Act impacted African Americans, what led up to the Exodus to Kansas, what life on the frontier was like for these new pioneers, how their mass migration impacted both the South and Kansas, what led them to pick Kansas as their destination and what John Brown had to do with it, and how the Exodusters fared in their new surroundings.
 Week 4
Lesson 4
Chinese Immigrants and Westward Expansion
In this class we will discuss how Chinese Immigrants came to live on the west coast of California during the Gold Rush, what life was like for them during this time, their role in the building of the Transcontinental Railroad, how they played a part in frontier life in the mid-western states, what impact the Homestead Act had on them, and what kept them from returning home. We will also discuss the Chinese Exclusion Act and how this impacted the lives of Chinese Immigrants.
Learners will not need to use any apps or websites beyond the standard Outschool tools.
Though there is no content that will be inappropriate for the age group, we will touch on the topics of discrimination against African Americans and Chinese Immigrants, the Chinese Exclusion Acts, Civil War and Reconstruction, and many other topics that include war, violence, death and other sensitive topics. This time period (and many other time periods) was very tumultuous and horrible for Chinese Immigrants and African Americans and I will not be breezing over the subject or sugar coating what happened, but the content and pictures used will not be graphic in nature. 
Joined August, 2019
Teacher expertise and credentials
Master's Degree in History from Wilson College
Bachelor's Degree in History from Wilson College
Hi everyone! I'm Nicole Trusky, a homeschooling mom of three and lover of all things history and pop culture! I have a Master in Humanities with a concentration in American Studies and have been studying history for as long as I can remember (my... 
Self-Paced Class


weekly or $40 for all content
4 pre-recorded lessons
4 weeks of teacher support
Choose your start date
1 year of access to the content

Completed by 21 learners
Ages: 13-18

Enroll Now, Start Anytime
SafetyPrivacyCA PrivacyLearner PrivacyTerms
Outschool International
Get The App
Download on the App StoreGet it on Google Play
© 2024 Outschool