Lesson Plans

Pulling Down the Statue

Students analyze, then compare and contrast primary source images to investigate the historical removal of a monument. Next students read articles to to investigate contemporary events related to statue removals, then write an op-ed article that links their study of the past to the present situation.

The Art of Tribute

What can you learn about people by analyzing statues created to memorialize them? Who is worthy of a monument? Students consider these questions and more as they analyze primary sources. After, students research and evaluate the building of historical statues and monuments in the United States. Students then either create a drawing or small prototype of…

Who Should Care for America’s Veterans?

Students investigate the U.S. government’s role in the care of returning soldiers throughout history, then craft a proposal to the Veterans Affairs Department outlining how returning veterans today should be cared for that addresses medical care (both physical and mental health), job training/search, education, and housing.

FDR and the Alphabet Agencies

Students analyze Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s First Inaugural Address and compare the promises made to his later work as president, then apply what they learned to create a government agency that would deal with a contemporary issue.

Political Parties – Advanced

Students gain a deeper understanding of political parties and the role they play in U.S. elections, evaluate how partisan priorities have changed over time, and then create political parties that speak to issues affecting young people as well as people of other generations.

The Formation of Political Parties

Students work in groups to investigate a case study using primary sources to help answer the question “Why do political parties form?” Students then use their learning to advise one of the two major U.S. political parties about a fledgling new “Teen Party”.

You Can’t Always Get What You Want (But If You Lobby Sometimes, You Might Find, You Get What You Need)

Students will investigate lobbying and the role of lobbyists in U.S. government historically and currently, brainstorm an idea for school improvement that they will lobby either for or against, and reflect on how they have grown through their learning.

Who Gets the Vote?

Students review the amendment clause of the U.S. Constitution, then analyze primary sources to deepen understanding of how constitutional voting (suffrage) amendments expanded the electorate and the rights of Americans. After, they’ll research a current voting rights issue and write a letter to their U.S. congressman about their informed view of the issue.

Faction and Democracy

Students write a multi-paragraph argumentative letter in opposition to a proposed bipartisan Senate bill to eliminate factions outside of the two major parties based on the ideas put forth by James Madison in Federalist No. 10, George Washington in his Farewell Address, and Thomas Jefferson in his First Inaugural Address.

Engine Company 54 lost 15 men, 9/11/01

Through analysis of a collage created post 9/11, students consider how art help us to process and understand difficult events then collect everyday materials to create a piece of art and an accompanying curator note  that reflects on a contemporary event.