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U.S. History

Important Class Files: Syllabus Pacing Guide
Weekly Work and Information

January 15-18

We begin the semester with World War II.  Of primary concern is the involvement of the United States in World War II.

Documents: Readings on wwii


Homework: Read pages 1150-1172.  Take notes.

We will also watch a short documentary about WWII.

This powerpoint has essential information about The Second World War – Chapter 26 Chapter 26 Powerpoint

Thursday – Jan. 18

We will be having a history simulation in class based on how to remember the dropping of the atomic bomb on Japan.  You will be working in groups and coming up with a consensus on a photograph to use taking into account both Japanese and American sentiments about the atomic bomb.

Homework:  Read pages 1172-1207.  Plan on a reading check Tuesday.

Week 2 Jan.22-25

Reading Check – pages 1172-1207.

Finish reading Chapter 26.

We will focus on the war at home when some 24 million Americans moved to take advantage of new job opportunities.

Essential Question: How did WWII force America to deal with its own diversity and race issues?

Presentation Project:  You will be working on an in-class project to depict 5 main groups who were affected as a result of WWII

Week 3 Jan. 29-Feb.1

Chapter 27 – The Cold War and the Fair Deal.

Assigned Readings – 3 parts:

Pages 1215-1228, 1228-1241, 1241-1255

Chapter Outline – Chapter 27 – The Cold War and the Fair Deal

Chapter 27 Terms –

Read the outline and notes to help with your reading assignments.  Complete the Chapter 27 terms.

Harry Truman who becomes president after Roosevelt dies and will be president for 8 years (1945-1953).  He leads the United States out of WWII and into the Cold War.  He helps establish an anti-communist foreign policy called containment that would endure until this day.

Our work with the Cold War, Red Scare and Civil Rights Movements will be the groundwork for Paper #4.  Cold War: There and Back Again.  Your paper will reflect events surrounding the Cold War, Abundance after the war, and the Civil Rights Movement.  Paper #4 will be due Feb. 12/Feb. 13

We will have an in-class writing assignment to help guide us for paper #4.  An unanswerable question…you can answer

(actually, this question about the Cold War is answerable, however, from the point-of-view of either the Russians or the Americans, it gets complicated)  The question is:  Who was more responsible for the Cold War: Russia or the United States?

Week 4. Feb. 5-8

Post War America – The Cold War gets hot (in Korea) and a continued increase in military spending to counter the Soviet threat.   We will be watching the documentary Atomic Cafe to get a better understanding how America emerged from WWII and began facing the reality of the Soviet Union’s power, our own global responsibilities and what we needed to achieve domestically when it comes to civil rights.

Atomic Cafe – documentary.  Our purpose in watching this documentary will be to look at America in the 1950s.  This includes bomb drills, tests, dark humor about the subject and the destructive power of nuclear bombs.  Perhaps reviewing this is timely according to this recently published article.

From nuclear hysteria comes our fear of Communism and especially Communists in the United States.  Led by Sen. Joseph McCarthy of Wisconsin, the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) would attempt to discredit and expose communism in America.

Civil Rights – Readings page 1281-1291

After the cold war began the Soviet Union used America’s racial discrimination to expose the faults of the American way of life.  Jim Crow in the South and discrimination in housing and employment in the North existed well into 50s and 60s.  The Civil Rights movement has several well-informed events that occur during this period: Brown v. Board of Education, Montgomery Bus Boycott and Little Rock’s Central High School.

Use the following reading guide to help you take notes:

Civil Rights Movement notes

Week 5 - Feb. 12-15

Mon/Tuesday – Class Project.  Mapping a way out of the south using the Green Book.  The Green Book was a travel guide for African Americans from 1937-1966, hoping, some day, a guide like this would not be necessary…or is it?  You and your partners will be planning a trip out of Topeka, KS, Little Rock AK and Montgomery, AL towards destinations north: Chicago, Detroit and Columbus, Ohio.  We will be using digitized copies of the Green Book to help map out our route.

Rubric – The Green Book The Negro Motorists Green Book – A travel guide for African American 1937

1955 Green Book

1956 Green Book

What things cost in 1956:

Wed/Thur: Foreign Policy in the 1950s. 

Reading Check pages 1291-1305.

Lesson/Activity:  Foreign Policy in the 1950s. Overview: During the 1950s, Eisenhower and his Secretary of State John Foster Dulles changed their objectives in containing Communism. The objective was now to force Communist governments to collapse.   Freeing people under Communist rule was the objective. These policies would result in costly consequences for the United States that would carry us into global conflicts in Vietnam, the Middle East (Iraq, Iran, Syria, Afghanistan, etc.) and Korea.

Group Activity:  Your group will be preparing a Presidential Daily Brief based on issues that happened during the late 1950s in Korea, Iran, Indochina and Egypt.  Your group will only be responsible for one of these countries.

Preparing a PDB


Week 6 - Feb. 19-22

Monday/Tuesday: Report out on your county as a CIA analyst.

We will use our class discussions to come up with an understanding of 1950s foreign policy.

Quiz on the Cold War.

Wednesday/Thursday – Bring our textbook to class. We will begin with Kennedy and the New Frontier and later Lyndon Johnson and the Great Society.

Assignment:  President Kennedy’s Inaugural Address.  After a very close election against Richard Nixon, a very divided nation comes together to hear John F. Kennedy deliver his inaugural address to the nation.

We will listen and annotate Kennedy’s address.

Homework:  A one-page reaction to the address will be due Monday/Tuesday Feb 26/27.


Kennedy’s inaugural address graphic organizer



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