The Rise of Mao Zedong

IB History: ActiveHistory

An ActiveHistory subscription provides everything you need to construct and deliver a two-year IBDP History course from start to finish using the ActiveHistory IB History Hub.

These consist not just of lesson plans, worksheets and teacher notes, but also multimedia lectures and interactive games and historical simulations ideal for remote learning and self-study.

Use the ActiveHistory curriculum maps and the ActiveHistory syllabus topics to design your own course effectively.

We also have you covered for the Internal Assessment, Extended Essay and Theory of Knowledge in History, not to mention Essay and Sourcework Skills, IBDP History Model Essays and IBDP History Sample Sourcework Exercises / Model answers!





1. Introductory Prezi: The Chinese Civil War and the Rise of Mao [interactive]
A brief overview of the main parties involved and the key events. Students should take notes!
2. Timeline - Overview using Video (8 minutes)
After copying down the information from the presentation , students then watch the first 8.5 mins of this video and make detailed notes to develop their basic timeline.
Students then develop their timeline by organising it under the following headings and clarifying dates by using textbooks and / or the web:
  • Background (to 1927)
  • First Chinese Civil War, 1927-37
  • Sino-Japanese War, 1937-45
  • Second Chinese Civil War, 1946-49
3. Timeline - Factual Test
This short-answer test, based on the video, can be used as a way of testing that students have gathered the essential information.

Timeline - Interactive Newsfeed [interactive]
Students and teachers can ensure that they have covered the essential information by using this interactive newsfeed, which covers all of the major points in extra detail.

5. Timeline - Consolidation using a second video clip
At this point, students can watch this second video clip and make additional notes as appropriate.
6. Analysis of the Events
With the chronological narrative now complete, students should turn their timeline into a thematic analysis using the structure recommended in this worksheet.
7. Timeline Challenge: The Chinese Civil War and the Rise of Mao [interactive]
Students are put into teams and play this competitive game which tests their knowledge and develops their understanding.
8. Source Pack: The Chinese Civil War and the Rise of Mao
This sourcepack comes complete with questions and is broken up logically into sections relating to three key periods leading to the rise of Mao.

Individual Research Task
For the next task, students are provided with a blank version of this grid. Each student is allocated one cell, and use timelines, textbooks and websites to produce a PowerPoint presentation on it. The class should start by going back through the source pack and deciding where and why each source can be placed in the table.

10. Jigsaw Table Exercise: The Chinese Civil War and the Rise of Mao [interactive]
After the class has had a feedback session based on the individual research tasks, students should complete this interactive exercise which tests their knowledge of the essential points and which additionally provides them with a thorough, completed table of information with which to develop their original notes. Each student is also given a score, which the teacher can record in the markbook.
11. Essay Writing Task
Students are presented with three possible essay titles, which the teacher can either divide between the class as a homework task OR one of which can be randomly chosen in a subsequent lesson and answered by the entire class in timed conditions.
12. MazeGame: The Chinese Civil War and the Rise of Mao [interactive]
Meet some of the key characters relating to the topic, learn about some of the key documents and artefacts, and take a series of tests before being given an overall score in this decision-making adventure.
13. Fling the Teacher Challenge [interactive]
An end-of unit challenge with 45 possible questions. All students should start the quiz at the same time, with 10 minutes available. Award 10 points to anyone finishing the quiz successfully within the first minute, 9 points to anyone finishing within the second minute, and so on. I build up a "leaderboard" of quiz results throughout the year, and especially during revision period!
14. Keyword Challenge [interactive]
If you are unfamiliar with the format of the game, click here for instructions.

Model Essays by RJ Tarr (note: teacher password required).

Analyse the methods and conditions which led to to the rise of Mao as ruler of China.

Compare and Contrast the Rise of Mao and Stalin (originally published in History Review)

Compare and Contrast the Rise of Pinochet and Franco

Compare and Contrast the Rise of Mao and Pinochet




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