Teaching American history with Hamilton the musical.

Hamilton wrote 51 essays in six months


Hamilton was the Broadway success story of 2015 and now you can watch the musical online. Disney +

What the musical is about: It plots the rise and famous death of Alexander Hamilton, the country’s first treasury secretary. He did a lot in his short life — he died before he was 50. The show starts with him as a young man arriving in New York in 1773, leaving his life as an orphan in the British West Indies. He feels compelled to prove himself, and he does. He worked as an aide to George Washington and served in the Revolutionary War. He married into a rich family, became a lawyer, helped ratify the Constitution and was embroiled in the country’s first major sex scandal. Hamilton also was instrumental in getting the nation’s capital moved to present-day Washington D.C.. He famously clashed with several political leaders, including presidential candidate Aaron Burr. In 1804, Burr challenged Hamilton to a duel of pistols. Burr won as he fatally wounded Hamilton. Source; Virginian pilot

Today Hamilton is making educators rethink how they teach early U.S. political history—and making students rethink how much they care.

Lesson plan

Before watching the movie

Watch the musical on Disney +

  • Who was Lafayette in Hamilton and how is he portrayed in the musical He became convinced that the American revolutionary cause was noble, and he traveled to the New World seeking glory in it. He was made a major general at age 19, but he was initially not given American troops to command.
  • Other issues to discuss; the soldiers’ conditions in the American Revolution, the virtues of Henry Knox, the legacy of various British kings
  • Mentions examples of how the founding fathers are portrayed here. Keywords; husbands, rivals, fathers, friends, lovers — all of them human, and afflicted with vices along with their virtues: pride, arrogance, anger, envy, lust, and greed
  •  Dividing the characters and songs into three categories—political, military, and personal— choose one figure on whom to write a five-page biography
  • Take this quiz about the movie.
  • And this quiz, who knows the most about this topic?
The show ruminates heavily on Hamilton’s status as a West Indies–born bastard child, and the immigration themes have resonated in the year of Donald Trump.  Source: Newsweek


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