Trade for a Wigwam


Minnesota State Standard – History Sub-strand 4, Standard 15 “North America was populated by indigenous nations that had developed a wide range of social structures, political systems, and economic activities, and whose expansive trade networks extended across the continent.”


10 Minutes

These 10-minute lessons can be done as stand-alone activities at the beginning or end of a class to raise student engagement, or the three in this unit can be combined for a single 30-45 minute lesson.

📲Technology Required

Device with web-browser – Chromebook, laptop or desktop computer, phone or tablet


Today we are focused on the Ojibwe history part of Making Camp. As one of our very favorite middle school history teachers said,

History is more than names and dates. It’s how people lived, the things they used.

– Jose Gonzalez, Social Studies Teacher, Gompers Middle School, Los Angeles

Students will watch two brief videos, one on building a wigwam and one on trading between tribes. They then trade in the points they have earned for items for their wigwam. Clicking on each item gives information on how that item was used by the Ojibwe. If you did the previous ten-minute lesson, your students already have points. If not, they’ll need to earn some by playing Making Camp mini-games (just click on anyone of the choices on the main screen).

📚Lesson Plan

1. Click on the wigwam icon to watch two videos

Table of items to trade in wigwam with Making Camp Ojibwe

If you have been following along in order, the player now has enough points to get a wigwam and at least two items to supply their wigwam. 

NOTE: If the player does not have at least 1 point to trade, the wigwam video will not play and instead, he/she will be told that at least one point is needed to trade for a wigwam.

If the player does not have at least 3 points to trade (1 for the wigwam, plus two more) after the wigwam building video, h/she will be told that at least two points are needed for trading.

The first time a player clicks on the wigwam icon the on the bottom left of the screen it will play a video on how a wigwam was built. This will be followed by a second video that briefly discusses that trading existed between and within tribes long before the settlers came. The player then has an option to trade points for items for the wigwam.

2. Click on the inside of the wigwam image in the bottom right corner to bring the player to the wigwam where items purchased can be moved to decorate or interact. 

Clicking on an item will bring up a text box with information on how that item was used or obtained by the Ojibwe people.

Some items also perform actions when clicked. For example, the parfleche opens to show pemmican inside, the dog walks across the wigwam.

Go to the next lesson in this series, Rabbit Stew & Multiplication

One thought on “Trade for a Wigwam

  1. Pingback: Making Camp – 10 minute history

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *