In this lesson, students interrogate their own assumptions about Abraham Lincoln in order to arrive at a deeper understanding of who Lincoln was. They investigate primary source documents in order to analyze the elements of Lincoln's life that have become legend and those that have been forgotten by history.
As part of a greater classwide congressional simulation, this assessment could be used to guide student research and essay writing.
Four Presidents called Illinois home – Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant, Ronald Reagan, and Barack Obama. Each presided over the country at a unique time in U.S. history, and this can be seen in the messages they communicated to the nation in their inaugural addresses. All four were reelected to a second term in office. Analysis of each president’s 1st and 2nd inaugural addresses provides an opportunity to compare and contrast the priorities, goals and intentions he outlined, as well as how the nation may have been changing at that time.
Using primary sources related to the official proclamation of Columbus Day as a holiday at the national level, this activity asks students to analyze the documents (official proclamation and a newspaper advertisement) to determine why President Harrison chose to declare it as a holiday. Accessing the lesson/document does require setting up free account.
Website with different lessons focusing on:
1.Analyze primary and secondary sources representing conflicting points of view to determine the proper role of government regarding the rights of individuals.
2.Analyze primary and secondary sources representing conflicting points of view to determine the Constitutionality of an issue.
3.Assess the short and long-term consequences of decisions made during the writing of the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights.
4.Compare the components of the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights with the Constitutions of other nations.
5.Evaluate contemporary and personal connections to the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights.
6.Compose a reflection and assessment of the significance of Constitution Day and the U.S. Constitution.
Support your students to embrace the larger questions featured in American Creed that ask:
What ideals unite us as a nation?
Where does a nation’s identity come from?
These lesson plans bring together teaching strategies, videos, and activities that will help you explore themes such as common ideals and national identity.
This inquiry embeds an Academic and Career Planning concept into historical inquiry, allowing students to make connections between historic accident analysis and the type of accident chain analysis a business might do today. By investigating the compelling question “Can the Accident Chain be disrupted?” students evaluate secondary sources about the Great Molasses Flood and address the issue of whether there are points along the accident chain when alternate decisions can avoid a calamity. The formative performance tasks help students build knowledge and practice skills so they can answer the supporting questions. Students create an evidence-based argument to answer the compelling question.
This packet provides an explanation of Ireland’s Great Hunger and provides ideas for primary source materials to use to describe the event A variety of discussion questions, writing activities, and other activities are provided that allow students to explore the facts and how different Irish artists used art and other media forms to depict the effects of the famine.
Anthony’s speech helps students understand the Constitution as a living document. She uses a variety of techniques of legal reasoning and interpretation to challenge other, exclusionary uses of the document. She bases an argument for change on an interpretation of a founding document.
Reconstruction is a challenging era for students to understand. Anthony’s speech captures the complexities of the Reconstruction Amendments and how they opened new avenues for disenfranchised groups to assert their rights. It also explores the interrelationship of the women’s suffragists with other movements. Anthony highlights the cultural, social, and political aspects of women’s struggle for equal rights. The speech does not simply assert women’s right to vote, but also more broadly addresses the subordinate position of women within the home and in other areas of public policy.
Collection of Lesson plans related to George Washington’s life, his service to his country, and his legacy. Lesson plans can be searched by grade level and topic.
Enhance your classroom experience on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr Day with these teacher-tested lessons from the nationally recognized We the People: The Citizen & the Constitution curriculum. These materials will help inform your students about the national struggle for civil rights and equal protection under the law.
Overview / Description: This unit will examine the participation of Native Americans in World War II and their impact on the overall war effort. It will also look at the Native American perspective on the war and their participation. Guiding Questions: Why did Native Americans participate in WWII?What roles did Native Americans play in WWII? How many Native Americans participated in WWII and what impact did they have on the overall war effort? In what ways did Native American participation in WWII connect to and/or change their cultural identity? What are some of the perspectives related to Native American participation in WWII? Learning goals/objectives: Analyze primary and secondary sources related to the topic of Native American participation in World War II. Using information gathered, construct an argument about the presence of Native Americans in World War II.
Overview / Description: This unit will examine the experience of Native Americans during the Great Depression in the United States. It will integrate comparisons with the experiences of other minority groups as well as exposing students to primary source documents related to the government policies which were adopted toward Native Americans during the time. Guiding Questions: What were the US government’s policies toward Native Americans leading up to the Great Depression? Were they fair? What was FDR’s response to the struggles of Native Americans during the Great Depression? What was the Native American experience like during the Great Depression and how did it compare to other minority groups? Learning goals/objectives: Analyze primary and secondary sources related to the experience of Native Americans during the Great Depression. Summarize the experiences of Native Americans during the Great Depression.
Use the following NewsHour Classroom resources to examine King’s impact on civil rights and his ongoing legacy. Lessons include a deep dive anayisis of the “I have a dream” speech and the impact of Dr, King’s work on current evens
Cartoons in Sunday comic strips make us laugh. Political cartoons in the front section of the newspaper challenge us to think.
Because political cartoons present a particular point of view or story through symbolism and caricature, they are a particularly effective method for teaching history.
By interpreting political cartoons, students are encouraged to discover different points of view on the same historical event.
The three political cartoons in this section focus on Robert M. La Follette; they offer an additional opportunity to explore the progressive era in Wisconsin. Suggested activities, brief histories of each cartoon, a one-page biography of La Follette, and an introduction to cartoon analysis are also included.
By reading primary sources outlining the rights of prisoners of war, along with the primary accounts of American prisoners of war held by the Japanese, students should critically assess the nature of violations committed by the Japanese forces during World War II. Through this assessment, the students should be able to determine the specific ways Japanese forces violated the rights of American POWs. Students should also consider how the Geneva Conventions, and Japan’s lack of ratification, apply to the debates that surrounded Japanese war crimes at the postwar Tokyo Trials.
This series of classroom activities were written to support educators who use the 2022 video series "Elections 101" from the Wisconsin Elections Commission (WEC).
"Should We Lower the Voting Age?" helps students answer the question "Should the U.S. lower the voting age?". Teachers will use the videos "Elections Overview" and "Nuts and Bolts" from the WEC as a starting point to build a Socratic Seminar from their own research on the topic.
Assessment template to guide students in a standards-based grading classroom on Social Studies Standard 3: CER.
On Constitution Day, students will examine the role of the people in shaping the United States Constitution. First, students will respond to a provocative statement posted in the room. They will then watch a video that gives a brief explanation of the Constitutional Convention of 1787, or listen as the video transcript is read aloud. A Constitution poster is provided so students can examine Article VII and discuss it as a class.
The elementary and middle school educator will then
guide students through a read-aloud play depicting two Constitutional Convention delegates who disagreed about ratifying the Constitution.
Important information about how to honor Veterans in school and classroom settings. The activities in this 2021 guide can be applied to any year. The VA publishes a new guide every year.
Use this PBS NewsHour lesson plan to help students understand the significance of Veterans Day and the meaning of sacrifice. Students will identify important veterans in their lives, examine an interactive timeline of military history and study issues facing veterans today
The goal of this module is to provide resources and information about the history of women’s vote in the U.S. Looking at the women’s suffrage movement provides a framework for exploring the changing role of women in politics and society in the 19th and 20th centuries. The history of suffrage offers an opportunity to examine women’s roles at critical points in the nation’s history, and to think about the impact of women’s voting behavior on politics in our time.
Activities and discussion questions are designed to explore the changing role of women in society and in politics. The module includes ideas for developing lessons on women’s suffrage and integrating the issue of suffrage into lessons on US history and politics, and to consider the impact of full suffrage on politics and society today.
Plastic bottles are everywhere! About 70% of the plastic water bottles bought in the U.S. are not recycled, and end up in the oceans. It seems obvious that using fewer plastic water bottles would be a good thing for our environment, but sometimes the alternatives can have negative consequences. Do the costs of banning plastic bottles outweigh the benefits?