Teaching Resources

Bring History To Your Classroom

The Historical Society of Palm Beach County offers a constantly growing list of tools for teaching Palm Beach County and Florida history. 

Lesson Plans are available for each annual Special Exhibit at the Johnson History Museum.  Topics range from historic periods such as World War II to themes like baseball and the fashion of feathers. 

Since 2003, the Historical Society has created and delivered to Palm Beach County public schools civics and history curriculum, according to Sunshine State Standards, in a tabloid format. We now offer this material here by chapter for downloading. Maps, graphics, quizzes, and Teacher’s Guides are designed to enhance the educational experience.

Check back often for new material.

History Lesson Plans

How did West Palm Beach grow from a small ‘scrub’ town into an alluring city for tourism and residents? The guide includes history, math, and language arts activities.

This guide was written for the exhibit Becoming West Palm Beach: Celebrating 125 Years (2019-2020). 

Download Lesson Plan

What is the Gulf Stream? How do you define “treasure”?  How were shipwrecks necessary to survival? Guide activities include map creation, reading comprehension, creative writing, and coinage identification.

This guide was written for the exhibit Shipwreck: Discovering Lost Treasures (2017-2018). 

Download Lesson Plan

This guide was written for the exhibit Love of the Game: Baseball in the Palm Beaches (2016-2017).

Download Lesson Plan

This plan is about Florida’s early Native Americans’ interactions with Spanish conquistadors. The activities in the guide include making a timeline, creative writing, and researching significant historical figures.

This guide was written for the exhibit Early Contact (2008)

Download Lesson Plan

This guide examines an extraordinary period of South Florida history, when a worldwide trend in women’s hats created a rush to riches for ordinary people, and devastation for a population of splendid birds that inhabited the tropical wilderness. The guide features bird identification tasks, calculating prices, reading comprehension activities, and poetry writing. 

This guide was written for the exhibit Feather Wars: Surviving Fashion 1870-1920 (2010-2011). 

Download Lesson Plan

What is a hurricane? What causes one? This guide features reading comprehension tasks, map plotting, chart interpretation, and a project to create a personalized hurricane. 

This guide was written for the exhibit Storm of ’28.

Download Lesson Plan

What did civilians in Palm Beach County do during World War II?  Why was rationing important? The guide features activities that include mathematics tasks, critical thinking, map interpretation, letter writing, and poster creation.

This guide was written to enhance the exhibit World War II: Paradise in Peril in Palm Beach County (2011-2012).

Download Lesson Plan

What was the role of the Civil Air Patrol during World War II?  How did we protect our shores?  Activities in this guide include reading tasks, making inferences from a text, researching primary and secondary sources, journal writing, and map interpretation.

This guide was written to enhance the exhibit Civil Air Patrol: War in Florida’s Waters 1942-1943 (2009-2010). 

Download Lesson Plan

This guide is for the popular book The Adventures of Charlie Pierce: The Last Egret by local author Harvey Oyer.  Activities include creating timelines, researching significant historical figures, arts and crafts, delivering presentations, diorama creation, writing critiques, and designing brochures. The guide was prepared by the School District of Palm Beach County.

Download Lesson Plan

This guide is for the book The Adventures of Charlie Pierce: The Last Calusa by local author Harvey Oyer Activities involve reading, story analysis, discussion questions, idiomatic speech, and visual interpretation tasks. It was prepared by local educators Patricia Kissel, Michelle Girardin, and Cheryl Burkhardt. 

Download Lesson Plan

Endless Summer: Palm Beach Resort Wear, this season’s special exhibition at the Richard and Pat Johnson Palm Beach County History Museum, explores the impact that Palm Beach has made in the world of fashion over the last 129 years. Since Henry Flagler built his railway and hotels here, Palm Beach has solidified itself as one of the world’s premier luxury resort destinations, where winter comes to summer. From the Fashion Beaux Arts fashion and entertainment mecca (1916), to the rise of Worth Avenue shops, the lifestyle of Palm Beach became synonymous with fashion resort wear.

Download lesson plan