The ground surface is so nearly level that you have no sense of contour. . . . It is not a former lake, although in large part it is a former swamp. Geology characteristically repeats itself around the world and down through time, but---with the possible exceptions of the Chilean Longitudinal Valley and the Dalbandin Trough in Pakistan---the Great Central Valley of California has no counterpart on this planet.

~ John McPhee, Assembling California

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Lesson Plans

Six lessons have been created to help teach aspects of central San Joaquin Valley history using the topics of immigration, agriculture and regional pioneers and pioneer life. Primary source material from the Fresno Historical Society Archives is featured in the lesson plans including photographs and documents such as census pages, posters and brochures. We hope your students enjoy exploring the Valley story!

Grade levels and curriculum standards addressed are:

Third grade:                          

 Lesson #2        3.3  (1, 3)

 Lesson #5        3.5  (1, 2)


Third & Fourth Grades:        

Lesson #1        3.3  (1)          4.4 (3)  

Lesson #4        3.3  (1)          4.3 (2, 3)    4.4 (1, 3, 4)

Lesson #6        3.3  (1, 3)      4.3 (2)  4.4 (3)

Eighth Grade:                        

 Lesson #3        8.12  (1, 5)


 Lesson Plans:


Lesson Plan 1


Lesson Plan 2


Lesson Plan 3
California’s Central Valley:
How We Shaped the Land


Lesson Plan 4


Lesson Plan 5
Home Grown:
What food is produced in our own backyard?


Lesson Plan 6

Last Updated Friday, November 15, 2019 - 12:55 AM.