Next, we start our timeline fold-up. This is an ongoing activity as we reach each year throughout the unit.
After we have had all kinds of fun learning about the Roaring 20s, I use the above video to introduce the Great Depression. One of the toughest things for students to understand is rations, and how the economy went from being so good to so bad, so quickly. This video helps them to get a grasp.
To help them experience a little bit of this time period, we complete this Dust Bowl Dice Simulation and Writing Connection that puts students in the shoes of a family trying to reach California and find work during the Dust Bowl. It gives students something to relate to, and makes their learning more memorable.
The last part of this unit is all about World War II. It has never failed that I always seem to have at least one student in my class that is fascinated by this time period and helps to get the rest of the class really excited. We start by talking about the Central and Allied Powers and make comparisons about the different sides in both of the World Wars. Then we bring it back to Texas and talk about the contributions that were made by Texans during war time and recognize some significant people such as Marjorie and Katharine Stinson, Audie Murphy, and the Tuskegee Airmen.