United States Mint Announces Free New Nickel Lesson Plans

March 25, 2004
Teachers Nationwide May Download Plans at www.usmint.gov/kids

WASHINGTON — United States Mint Director Henrietta Holsman Fore today announced that the first set of free, downloadable lesson plans developed around the new Westward Journey Nickel Series™ is now available to teachers nationwide.

The first new nickel in the series, featuring the “Peace Medal” reverse design, should begin appearing in circulation during the next several weeks. Lewis and Clark gave Peace Medals, featuring the design originally commissioned by President Thomas Jefferson, as tokens of goodwill to Native Americans they met along the trail.

“These new nickels offer a perfect opportunity for students to learn about the Louisiana Purchase and Lewis and Clark Expedition, and to connect history with the real coins in their pockets,” said Director Fore.

The United States Mint will release the second newly designed nickel in the Westward Journey Nickel Series in August 2004. It will feature the keelboat in full sail that transported the Lewis and Clark expedition up the Missouri River. Two more newly designed nickels are expected to be released in 2005.

To complement the new nickels, the United States Mint will offer K through 6 educators a set of free lesson plans based on each new design as it is released. Resource recommendations for K through 12 teachers also will be available as well to support their teaching of the Louisiana Purchase and the Lewis and Clark. In addition, at the end of the year, more comprehensive secondary education lesson plans will be released covering both 2004 nickels. All lesson plans and educational resources are available for free from the United States Mint H.I.P. Pocket Change™ Web site at www.usmint.gov/kids.

Earlier this year, the United States Mint released its 2004 set of quarter–based lesson plans featuring the Michigan, Florida, Texas, Iowa, and Wisconsin quarter designs from the popular 50 State Quarters Program. Their drawing upon the new quarter reverse designs helps inspire students to learn about the culture, geography, and unique heritage of our states.

Because of the success of these quarter–based plans, the original set for grades K through 6 have been expanded with additional plans for grades 7 through 12, where students gain exposure to an advanced set of concepts in history.

The various lesson plans in both the quarter series and the nickel series — created and reviewed by teachers to meet curricular goals — focus on mathematics, geography, history, language, art, science, financial literacy, and more. The plans blend clear instructions with student–friendly reproducible worksheets, background information, and answer keys to help make instruction easier for educators.

Thousands of teachers across the country have used the plans, which have seen more than 1.5 million downloads from the Teachers area of the Web site. For more information, other educational resources, games, quarter–based lesson plans from previous years, and the new nickel–based plans, visit www.usmint.gov/kids.

Created by Congress in 1792, the United States Mint is the manufacturer of legal tender coinage for the United States. In FY 2003, the United States Mint manufactured approximately 11.4 billion coins and generated gross revenue of $1.4 billion.

Click here to view the downloadable Westward Journey Nickel Series™ lesson plans.


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