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Students will identify and analyze primary and secondary sources, utilize technology to gather information to learn about the Civil War. Students will be able to identify the causes of the Civil War, describe the state of the nation and sequence the first events of the Civil War and be able to state the meaning and impact of the Emancipation Proclamation. Alana and Jackson, Studies Weekly students, have found a closet full of old primary sources that somehow transports them to different periods of U.S. history. With Alana and Jackson, students “travel through time to visit different times and places throughout our history!”
Students will demonstrate knowledge of the effects of Reconstruction on American life by identifying the points and provisions of the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments to the Constitution of the United States and their impact on the expansion of freedom in America. Students will know the major events, people, and locations involved with the end of the Civil War. Alana and Jackson use their magical primary sources to witness firsthand how the Civil War ends, how the North and South begin to become a Union once again and how the newest Amendments impact the lives of all citizens.
Students will create a timeline of events to show how the Industrial Revolution changed America. It’s an exciting time in United States’ history! Students will explore primary sources and learn about significant American inventors and evaluate the contemporary and long-term impact of their inventions. It’s also a time of great hardship for many Americans. Alana and Jackson will visit a child forced to work in a factory and the challenges men and women endured, too.
Industrial growth and waves of immigrants created vast wealth for a few people! Students will explain how the Gilded Age got its name through examining primary sources, making timelines and learning about the changes happening in the United States during this period of time. Alana and Jackson are amazed at the booming industries of steel, oil, lumber and western resources. The kids even meet and interview some of these tycoons, also known as robber barons, to discover how they made their fortunes and how they spend their millions of dollars.
How far would you travel to find a better life? What if you didn’t have much money, didn’t speak English or know anyone in the new country you were traveling to? What if you would be traveling on a ship for many weeks without a comfortable bed, fresh food or a place to take a bath? Only a very brave person would go through that experience! Millions of these very brave people traveled across the ocean and landed on Ellis Island. Join Alana and Jackson as they meet newly arrived immigrants on Ellis Island. Students will join Alana and Jackson to learn about the reasons why immigrants left their homeland, what they dream about for their futures and what they encountered as they began their lives in America.
American Indians, pioneers, gold and trains! Alana and Jackson discover that the American West is a wild place! Students will use primary sources to assist with understanding specific events such as the Indian Removal Act, the California Gold Rush and the implementation of the Transcontinental Railway. Students will revisit Lewis and Clark’s expedition and the Louisiana Purchase to build background knowledge.
Students will analyze the events leading up to the Spanish-American War, including the sinking of the USS Maine. Alana and Jackson help students to understand the major events and people of the Spanish-American War, identify and understand the types of propaganda used before and during the Spanish American War. Students will begin to make connections by making a cause-and-effect diagram describing how the Spanish-American War transformed the United States into an imperialistic world power.
Students will travel with Alana and Jackson to witness the explosive growth of the United States during this time. The U.S. was producing more goods than it could consume, so looking outside to other nations and expanding seemed like the logical next step. The U.S. acquired Guam, Puerto Rico, added Hawaii to its list of territories, built the Panama Canal and broadened the U.S. Navy! Students will identify Queen Liliuokalani, Grover Cleveland, William McKinley, Theodore Roosevelt, George Dewey, and John Hay. Students will describe the historical significance of the Hawaiian Islands and Pearl Harbor.
Why did WWI, the Great War, have to happen at all? Alana and Jackson help students identify the main reasons why WWI was started. Students will explain how the U.S. initially stayed out of the fight, but eventually declared war. Alana and Jackson will help students analyze primary sources to learn about the types of weapons used by soldiers, the four major battles of WWI and how peace in the world was finally restored. Was WWI really the “War to End All Wars”?
The Roaring ‘20s sound so exciting to Alana and Jackson! While looking through boxes of old records (78s), Jackson dreams of seeing and hearing the sights and sounds of the Jazz Age and the Harlem Renaissance. Alana thinks participating in a suffragist march and seeing improvements in the standard of living, transportation and entertainment would be neat! Not everything during this time period is easy; some events create conflict like the Immigration Act of 1924, the Great Migration and policies enacted by the Warren G. Harding, Calvin Coolidge and Herbert Hoover Administrations.
Alana and Jackson traveled back in time and found themselves in a “Hooverville” tent city. What happened? Join Alana and Jackson as they put together the pieces of a broken economy to discover the causes of the Great Depression. They will help students understand how and why the stock market crashed in 1929, the resulting unemployment, failed economic institutions and the effects of the Dust Bowl. Will the economy ever improve?
Relief, recovery and reform! With Alana and Jackson as the “guides on the side,” students will analyze the main features of the President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal. Students will examine the significance of the Civilian Conservation Corps, the Works Progress Administration, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), Social Security, the Tennessee Valley Authority and the Alphabet Agencies.
Alana and Jackson help to explain the reasons for America’s involvement in World War II. The United States government worked hard to help its citizens during the Depression. Unfortunately, the governments in some European countries did not help their economies. This resulted in political instability and lead to a worldwide conflict. Using a graphic organizer, students will compare and contrast the rise of fascism, totalitarianism and Nazism in Europe and Japan, the leaders and the goals of Germany, Italy and Japan.
Who is on “our side”? Alana and Jackson explain who is “friend” and who is “foe” (Axis and Allied Powers). Students will use maps to locate engagements of World War II prior to the U.S. becoming involved, including leaders of Germany, Italy and Japan. The Congress of the United States passed laws that required President Roosevelt to maintain an official policy of neutrality. Germany invades Poland, France, Russia and Great Britain. President Roosevelt tried to help British leader, Winston Churchill, the leader of the Free French, Charles de Gaulle, and the leader of the Soviet Union, Josef Stalin with supplies. Jackson wonders how the United States can stand by and watch as Germany and Japan become more aggressive in Europe and Asia!
The United States enters WWII! The need for metal energizes the Birmingham steel industry and the Port of Mobile. Alana and Jackson witness the huge changes on the American home front and the world, including opportunities for women (Rose the Riveter) and African Americans (Tuskegee Airmen). Students learn about the Holocaust and visit some scary places too like a Nazi concentration camp and an internment camp for Japanese Americans. Alana and Jackson cannot believe what they are reading and learning about; how could this happen in the United States and in the world?
Alana and Jackson examine primary source newspapers with “V-E Day and V-J Day” displayed in huge headlines. Wait, it’s over? Who won? What did the kids miss? Join Alana and Jackson as they located major events of WWII on a map: Battle of the Bulge, including campaigns in North Africa and the Mediterranean; major battles of the European theater such as the Battle of Britain, the invasion of the Soviet Union, and the Normandy invasion; and events in the Pacific theater such as Pearl Harbor, the strategy of island-hopping, and the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Students will examine President Truman’s decision to drop the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the U.S. role in the formation of the United Nations and the surrender of the Axis Powers.
Jackson and Alana’s teacher compares the old proverb “If you give a man a fish, he is fed for a day. But if you teach a man to fish, he is fed for a lifetime,” to The Servicemen’s Readjustment Act of 1944, also known as the G.I. Bill of Rights. What does fishing and soldiers have in common? Apparently a lot! Students will learn why the G.I. Bill was created, how it was passed and how it changed the course of history for regular American servicemen and their families.
Changes at Home: Students will summarize the social, cultural, and economic developments that took place in the United States during the Cold War including consumerism, mass media, the growth of suburbs, expanding educational opportunities and new technologies (Sputnik; space race; weapons of mass destruction; accessibility of microwave ovens, calculators, and computers). Students will examine rocket production at Redstone Arsenal and helicopter training at Fort Rucker. Summarize the policies of Mikhail Gorbachev; collapse of the Soviet Union; Ronald W. Reagan’s foreign policies, including the Strategic Defense Initiative. Is the Cold War over?
What happens when two "super power" countries with nuclear capabilities have their first confrontation? Alana and Jackson aren't sure they want to know! The Korean War was the first armed conflict between democracy and communism. North Korea (the communists) attacking South Korea on June 25, 1950, came as a big surprise to the United Nations. President Truman felt a lot of pressure to become involved and help South Korea. Over 50 years later, American troops are still there to support the South Koreans and make sure the Panmunjom Peace Treaty is observed.
Students will join Alana and Jackson as they begin to learn about the Civil Rights Movement. There are so many people to remember and learn about like Rosa Parks, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Charles K. Steele, Fred L. Shuttlesworth and John Lewis. Sometimes it’s hard to imagine that people lived through events like the Desegregation of Armed Forces, Brown v. Board of Education, the Montgomery Bus Boycott, the “Little Rock Nine,” student protests, Woolworth’s sit-in, “freedom riders,” Selma-to-Montgomery Voting Rights March and that’s just the beginning!
Alana and Jackson still have a hard time understanding how life was for many people before the civil rights movement. Now that they have learned some information, they’re hungry to know more! Students will investigate Martin Luther King Jr.’s life story. Our country’s leaders make major changes in how people are treated by introducing the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Many people worked to bring about change including Malcolm X. The Civil Rights Act of 1968 helped to promote the inclusion of all Americans and reduce discrimination, but as a country we still have work to do.
Alana and Jackson are slightly overwhelmed by the incredible changes the United States went through during the Kennedy years. This was the age of the Cuban Missile Crisis, Sputnik, the spread of communism and affirmative action. Great leaders were assassinated, man walked on the moon and people watched these events from their living rooms on television sets! Students will read to learn more about the Cold War, how American society was changed after JFK was assassinated and the impact of how technology changed education.
Jackson and Alana find themselves attending President Johnson’s “Great Society” speech on the Ohio University campus! The ideas of federal programs to fund education, Medicare, conservation, War on Poverty, Social Security Act for people of all ages and races sounds incredible, but how will he get all of this accomplished? Students join Alana and Jackson to explore LBJ’s Great Society, the beginnings of the Vietnam conflict and what’s new on toy store shelves.
Alana and Jackson never thought baking a cake would lead to learning about war, Communism, scandal and presidential impeachment! Students tune in with Alana and Jackson as they learn more about the Vietnam War, President Nixon’s famous visit to Communist China and how technology is connecting America one television at a time.
Whoa, did the world just suddenly turn groovy or what? Alana and Jackson find out that flower power was powerful! Students will read about how the hippies joined in protesting the Vietnam War, counter-culture became mainstream and the music changed world.
Alana and Jackson discover through music, newspaper articles and online research that women have faced discrimination just because they are women! That doesn’t make much sense to the kids, but with help from their families and teachers, they begin to see the women’s movement of the 1960s and 1970s as a much-needed change in society! Join Alana and Jackson as they learn about affirmative action, Title IX and the Equal Rights Amendment.
Alana and Jackson discover that what happens on the other side of the world can affect our lives too! Knowing what is happening in global politics helps us to understand our place in the world and why the United States creates new policies or the price of goods and services increase or decrease. It’s great to be a U.S. citizen, but it’s important that we remember we’re also “global citizens”!
The technology revolution is here! Innovative tools help us to communicate easier, design interesting projects and make life better for millions of people around the world. What does that have to do with students? Everything! Alana and Jackson learn the short history of technology, recent watershed moments and how financial know-how is essential.
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