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This week's interactive lesson/activities,  focuses on the impact of technology and people moving west.

People have continually invented and used technology as a tool to make their lives easier one way or another.


When Americans first moved to Buffalo County, and Central Nebraska and Great Plains in general, they came by wagons and trains. As the United States continued expanding west, life on the prairie continually evolved with the American ideals of Manifest Destiny and in its own right as a response to their environment. Already existing technologies like the Prairie Schooner and the steam engine trains accelerated movement west, however, when early settlers found themselves on the Nebraska plains, they found a vast territory with very little resources and tools to help them make a living. As more people found their way on to the Great Plains, agricultural technology continued to evolve with the introduction of the Steel Plow, Barbed Wire, and Windmill. Please see the following information, videos, and activates related to Morse Code and building a sod house.

1. Settling the Great Plains - Inventions and Adaptations - For this week's reading, the following website by David Burns for the Virginia Standards of Learning described many great inventions accompanied with graphics and text. See the website here!













2. Learning Morse Code - The Telegraph transformed communication for the United States! While the Telegraph is not an invention from Nebraska, however, incorporating this technology became a lifeline of communication that shared news from all over the world and widely used along the Transcontinental Rail Road. Developed by Samuel Morse in the 1830s, Morse Code sent a series of dots and dashes over a wire. For more information about the telegraph, see

    For this next activity, test your skills interpreting Morse Code! See the key and video to help translate the 11 secret messages below! Please see the image below called the Morse Code Worksheet for the first five with clues and key to all 11 tracks. If you need further audio in identifying the sounds of letters, see this video for the sound of each letter. 

Track 1      Track 2      Track 3     Track 4     Track 5     Track 6     Track 7     Track 8     Track 9     Track 10     Track 11

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