Women's History
Women's Life on the Great Plains

Women's Life on the Great Plains
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 5 to 7
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   6.51

     challenging words:    novel, heated, time-consuming, provided, loom, windstorm, westward, undo, flax, education, survival, trousers, pounded, hospitality, scrubbed, beginning
     content words:    Sarah Plain, Great Plains

Print Women's Life on the Great Plains
     Print Women's Life on the Great Plains  (font options, pick words for additional puzzles, and more)

Quickly Print - PDF format
     Quickly Print: PDF (2 columns per page)

     Quickly Print: PDF (full page)

Quickly Print - HTML format
     Quickly Print: HTML

Proofreading Activity
     Print a proofreading activity

Feedback on Women's Life on the Great Plains
     Leave your feedback on Women's Life on the Great Plains  (use this link if you found an error in the story)

Women's Life on the Great Plains
By Sharon Fabian

1     In the novel Sarah Plain and Tall, Sarah moves to the Great Plains in answer to a newspaper advertisement for a bride. In the mid-1800s when the plains were being settled, this was not nearly as unusual as it would seem today. When a man on the prairie lost his wife, he had to find a new one. The work that women did on the prairie was so essential that a family could hardly manage without her. So, when a woman died or was killed, her husband needed to search for a new wife quickly. If no one was available where he lived, he may have advertised for a bride from farther away. Sometimes these wives were called mail order brides.
2     In the days of the westward movement, women, just like men and children, played an essential role in the survival of the family. Women took care of the children and took care of the house. They took part in the heavy farm labor, too. Women also provided many of the services that would later on be provided by professionals, such as education and medical care.
3     The woman of the family and the older girls usually made the family's clothes. Depending on where they lived, they might use flax, cotton, or wool. They may have started from scratch, spinning the yarn on a spinning wheel. Next, they would weave the yarn into fabric on a loom. Not every family had a loom, so the woman might visit a neighbor when it was time to weave. Then the fabric that they had woven, or fabric that they had bought, would be sewn into clothing, at first by hand, and later on with a sewing machine. They sewed all of the everyday clothing worn at the time, including bonnets and aprons for the women and girls. They would make shoes, moccasins, and even heavy trousers for the men from leather.
4     They made quilts, too. After the top layer of a quilt was finished, the woman would get together with her neighbors to quilt the top layer to a bottom layer, with warm stuffing in between. This was an all-day project called a quilting bee.

Paragraphs 5 to 11:
For the complete story with questions: click here for printable

Weekly Reading Books

          Create Weekly Reading Books

Prepare for an entire week at once!

Women's History
             Women's History

United States
             United States

    American Government  
    Black History and Blacks in U.S. History  
    Children in History  
    Government Careers  
    Hispanic Heritage  
    How Can I Help?  
    National Parks and Monuments  
    Native Americans  
    Presidents of the United States  
    Women's History  

United States History
    A Nation Divided
    A New Nation
    After the Civil War
    American Revolution  
    Cold War
    Colonial America (1492-1776)  
    Lewis and Clark
    Pearl Harbor  
    Spanish American War (1898)  
    The 1890's  
    The 1900's  
    The 1910's  
    The 1920's  
    The 1930's  
    The 1940's  
    The 1950's  
    The 1960's  
    The 1970's  
    The 1980's  
    The 1990's  
    The 2000's  
    The Civil War
    The Great Depression
    The United States Grows
    The War of 1812  
    Wild, Wild West  
    World War I
    World War II  

50 States

             Fifty States Theme Unit

Document Based Activities
      Document Based Activities

More Activities, Lesson Plans, and Worksheets

Back to School
Graphic Organizers
Alphabet Worksheets
Sight Words
Math Worksheets
50 States

Monthly Themes

Place Value
Time and Calendar
Earth Day
Solar System
Following Directions
Cursive Writing
Patterns and Sequencing
All About Me

First Grade
Second Grade
Third Grade
Fourth Grade
Fifth Grade
Sixth Grade

Main Idea
Cause and Effect
Order of Operations
Community Helpers
Addition and Subtraction
Bulletin Board Ideas
Word Searches
Crossword Puzzles
Printable Puzzles

Reading Comprehension
Reading Skills
English Language Arts

Copyright © 2015 edHelper