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Immigrant Arrivals



  • Language Arts
  • Ed. Technology
  • U.S. History


  • 6-8
  • 9-12

Brief Description

Students create a multimedia presentation comparing the experiences of immigrants who arrived at New York's Ellis Island with the experiences of those who arrived at California's Angel Island.


Students will learn about the variety of experiences that greeted immigrants to the United States during the first quarter of the 20th century and develop an understanding of the factors related to their experiences.


immigration, ethnic, bias, exclusion, multicultural

Materials Needed

Computer access to sites or printouts of pages from sites about Angel Island, such as

Sites about Ellis Island, such as

A multimedia authoring tool, such as PowerPoint, HyperStudio, or html (presentations could be created in other forms or formats)

Lesson Plan

Arrange students into groups of six or eight, and ask members of each group to work together to create a multimedia presentation comparing Ellis Island with Angel Island. Have half the students in each group explore print and online resources about Ellis Island; the other students should research Angel Island. Explain to students that they should look for information and photographs relating to the ethnic, social, economic, and cultural background of the immigrants; their reasons for immigrating; and their experiences while traveling to, arriving at, and living in the United States. After all the information is collected, students in each group should get together and discuss the areas they'll compare. Then group members should work together to create the presentations.


Evaluate students on the accuracy of the information they provide, on their ability to organize and present the information logically and understandably, and on the technical aspects of their presentations.

Lesson Plan Source

Education World

Submitted By

Linda Starr

National Standards


U.S. History: