A WWII Story

Screen Shot 2016-04-25 at 11.22.35 AMWorld War II is one of the most investigated, filmed, discussed, debated, and beloved parts of America’s story – in other words, it is COMPELLING – and the topic has countless stories that have been told (and not told) in books, movies, music, television series, and more.   There is a WWII story for everyone – for some, more than others – and you have the opportunity to develop a presentation for a COMPELLING STORY involving America and World II.  Your topic should be narrow in nature, you can use a few great resources to research your story, and you can can tell your story in ANY WAY YOU WANT! Your story can be an actual story (creative in nature) or more of a content presentation – whatever the case, you will not only want to tell the story, but also tell WHY WE SHOULD CARE ABOUT THE STORY!

Similar to NHD, start with a broad topic, like D-day, and then get narrow – like the story of General Eisenhower and his leadership during D-Day.

It’s sort of a mini-NHD, but without the limitation of the theme, the huge expectations, the competition, and the intense judging process

How will you find out what topic you want to choose?  Play around with some of the sites below – they are chock full of cool stuff.

How will you be assessed?

  • Is your topic and story compelling or basic? 
  • Did you consult a few decent resources (beyond wikipedia or a simple Google search) to find out possible answers?
  • Did you present your findings completely in a creative, clear and original manner?
  • Did you present why your story is important for us to see/hear/experience?
  • Did you try, or did you just throw something together?

Once you have decided your topic, fill in the form below!

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Learning Experience April 18-19 – America’s Road to War

We now know a little about how WWII started in Europe – but how did the US get involved in this global conflict?  How did American go from ISOLATION to INTERVENTION? That’s our target, so let’s find out!

Complete your “From Isolation to Intervention” notes  using the website provided for you by your fave 8th grade American history teacher.   Make sure you check out the videos on the site!  This experience will take you longer than 25 minutes – don’t save it for one sitting!

The video below will give you an awesome overview of America going to war – watch it for review!

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Finish examining the New Deal … and take a little quiz

Hopefully the debate solidified your understanding of the New Deal.  Have any more questions?  You should complete your New Deal study guide and submit it by next class. Also, make sure you post a current article, topic, or event on your section’s bulletin board to see the New Deal in action!

New Deal Today Section 1 / New Deal Today Section 2 / New Deal Today Section 3 / New Deal Today Section 4/ /New Deal Today Section 5

Now, how about an open not, open web, do it by yourself untimed quiz to check your understanding?  Here you go …

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Debating the New Deal

I pledge you, I pledge myself, to a new deal for the American people.

We have a lot of background knowledge on the government programs of FDR’s administration during the economic crisis of the Great Depression, including many of the Alphabet Soup programs.  Our next step is to discuss the short term and long term legacy of the plan with an in-class debate on Friday.

Carefully consult and use your New Deal debate handout (or your own format) to prepare for at least three of the five major topics of discussion:

  1. Was the New Deal successful in dealing with the economic crisis of the 1930s?
  2. Did FDR have too much power as President during the New Deal?
  3. Did the New Deal help all segments of the population?
  4. Was the government moving too close toward socialism during the New Deal?
  5. Is the long term legacy of the New Deal positive for the United States?

The materials already discussed in class and the following resources should be helpful, but you can also find your own – make sure they are reliable! Statistics and primary sources are great to support an opinion.

There will be a chance for back channel interaction in class – want to get started early? Use your first name on the back channel chat, and make sure you use positive digital citizenship.  no assertions without evidence!

Section 1 / Section 2 / Section 3 / Section 4 / Section 5


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Representing the New Deal

Young New Dealers – You hopefully have a decent idea about many of the New Deal programs made famous by their acronyms in the alphabet agencies. Today you and your partners are going to take a specific program and create a representation using everyone’s favorite building toy – Legos.  Your task is to create a visual representation of your assigned New Deal program, summarize the program on one half of a piece of paper, and describe your representation (with a different narration) using an app called tellagami.  As you describe your representation, put a pretty picture of your representation in the back of your animated voice. When you are done, we will have a little museum walk so that we can dig deeper into these New Deal agencies. You will also need to submit your script and tellagami link on Google classroom.  Be creative, and have fun!

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Learning Experience April 7/10 – FDR and the New Deal

Our Greatest President- (1)Was the New Deal a positive step for America?

That’s an essential question for this unit, and you will be developing a foundation of information regarding the New Deal in a lengthy study guide in order to help answer this question. You can write in your guide using the one provided, or use the FDR NewDeal document on myusm if you want to type it.

Your resources for the guide are available on the New Deal Study Guide resource page.


Carefully follow directions on all parts of the assignment!  In order to prove that you have read them, write or type “loves history” after your name on your answer sheet!

Here’s a quick introduction to get your brain thinking about the New Deal – take a look!

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Learning Experience April 5-6 – Life During the Depression

Screen Shot 2016-04-04 at 7.47.08 AMYou have seen many of the effects of the Depression on the general public, and also a little bit about the approach of the Hoover administration.  What about specific groups of the population that were affected in various ways?  Remember, the Depression only directly affected one-third of the population – but those that were hit really suffered!  you will be one of those people in our next class as we share depressing stories created by … YOU!

You will be given a role for the next class and will have the opportunity to create a “scrapbook” page that summarizes your life during the depression.  Consult your section of the LifeDuringtheGreatDepression
Life During the Depression” reading and follow the instructions and rubric carefully.  An Last Hired - Life in the Depression example
example of an African American during the Depression is available here!


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In class March 31/April 1 – Hey President Hoover!

It’s me – The guy in the White House when the Depression started!

You have heard some of the basics about the Depression – the stats are pretty … well … depressing, right?  What did the President at the time do in response to the economic crisis?  you watched a brief overview of Herbert Hoover’s response last night, but let’t get into a little more detail by interviewing the 31st President.  Each small group will get a specific question and have a few minutes to construct a response based on Hoover’s ideas and actions. Please check out the links to President Hoover , The Bonus ArmyHoover’s Last Stand, and “President Hoover and the Failure of Conservativism to Ease the Great Depression”,  the videos “Welcome to Hooverville” and “The Bonus Army”, and the “Life in the Bonus Army” scrapbook below.


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Assignment April 4 – Goodbye, Roaring 20s – Hello, Depressing 30s!

Hope you did okay in the stock market today, young historian! You got a little crazy there, didn’t it? Crazy enough to cause the greatest financial crisis in American history? Let’s find out.

Obviously, we are moving from the roaring 20s to the very depressing 30s – the great depression. Your task tonight is to spend some time looking at some basic information about the Great Depression – some arguments for studying it, some general statements and statistics, and an overview of the causes of the economic disaster. Use the document provided in class and the blend space here to get some background knowledge.

In class tomorrow, will take a look at some of the statistics of the depression, the causes, and how President Hoover handled – or didn’t handle – the challenges of the nation.

Want a little more about the Hoover Era?  Were you in Annie a few years ago?    Here is a scene called “We’d like to thank you , Herbert Hoover”.

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Learning experience April 3 – Evaluating the 20s – and pick some stocks!

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times … a famous opening of a Charles Dickens novel? (yes)  A description of Taft’s hairline?  (no … only the worst there)  A framework for a way to look at the decade of the 1920s?  Absolutely!

Remember those notes you started taking about the 20s when you tried to BREAKOUT a few weeks ago?  Make sure you have your themes complete  using  America in the 20th Century – The Roaring 20s (usmstudent, wildcats). If you interested, and want some laughs), you can also watch our AHR! friend John Green as he discusses the great decade in The Roaring 20’s: Crash Course US History #32.

You can (and must) answer this essential question by writing two paragraphs, one for each perspective. Each paragraph should have a topic sentence with a clear and original thesis / key idea and specific supporting historical details to help prove the thesis. You do NOT need to explain everything about the 20s – just make sure you have an original thought supported in each well-written paragraph. This assignment is available on Google Classroom.

Also, come to class with a few stocks selected for our look at the business boom tomorrow – it should be fun!

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