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Texas Economics, Politics, and Society


This lesson plan was written for grades 6–8.


Students will identify the economic, political, and social influences that affected the settlements of Fort Worth and Waco in the late nineteenth century.


Materials needed are:


1. The following definitions from the Miriam-Webster Dictionary may help students during this lesson.

1. Have students access the three bird’s-eye views of Fort Worth (1876, 1886, and 1891) and the three views of Waco (1873, 1886, and 1892).

2. Have one or more groups analyze the Fort Worth views and one or more groups analyze the Waco views. Have students chart the similarities and differences of each set of images on Venn Diagrams (Fort Worth diagram; Waco diagram) and then discuss the findings with the entire class.

3. Record the similarities between all three views of Fort Worth and the similarities between all three views of Waco on the Chart of Influences on Fort Worth and Waco over Time. Have students identify whether each similarity influenced the city politically, socially, or economically.


Have students identify and support with evidence which influences had the greatest impact on both Fort Worth and Waco over time.

TEKS Connections

Social Studies

Language Arts

This lesson plan was created by Wendy Coleman, Fort Worth ISD educator, to accompany the Texas Bird’s-Eye Views Web site produced by the Amon Carter Museum, Fort Worth, Texas, and was made possible by a generous grant from Burlington Northern Santa Fe Foundation representing BNSF Railway Company.