The Rise and Fall of Reconstruction in Virginia

Lesson 6: Why Reconstruction Failed

Time Estimated: 1 days



Students will:

  1. Learn why Reconstruction was not successful and eventually ended.
  2. Outline information by identifying main ideas and details.







  1. Students will pair up and read a textbook version of the major events during Reconstruction (If access is available, view the United Streaming video entitled "American Civil War, Reconstruction ( United Streaming. January 25, 2005 This video includes highlights of the events that occurred during Reconstruction which contributed to its demise.)
  2. Ask students to develop a timeline of Reconstruction events- Students will review the text/and or video by completing a teacher directed outline. For a reference for teachers see
  3. Students will be given a blank outline worksheet entitled, Why Reconstruction Failed. They will copy the outline from the overhead as it is completed. Discuss with students three main ideas why Reconstruction failed.
    • President Andrew Johnson and Congress
    • Southern Attitudes
    • Northern Interference

Ask students for facts supporting each main idea.




One of the following software programs will assist less able students:

  1. PicWriter- Matches pictures with words for non readers and writers. This outline allows the student to still be able to review the outline.
  2. Kurzweil 3000- outline can be scanned and then listened to by student