Please fill in the following form to contact the author, Russel Tarr (@russeltarr)
ActiveHistory provides entertaining, educational award-winning interactive simulations, decision-making games, self-marking quizzes, high-quality worksheets and detailed lesson plans for teachers and students.
View the top 50 activities here.
You can also request a free trial.
Fakebook Project - Key Figures of the American Civil War
In preparation for the roleplay strategy game that follows, each student needs to take on the role of one key politician or soldier from the Civil War and research their life and career and present their findings through a 'Fakebook' profile. In this way they will be able to act in role much more effectively during the game and maximise the chance of their side being victorious.
Here are some examples by students from the International School of Toulouse.
The next part of the unit is taught purely through strategy games! Students take on the roles of different politicians and generals and through a series of 'moves' based around 'decision points' they quickly develop a deep understanding of the people, places, events, themes, campaigns and battles of the war.
Mission A: People and Places
In this first stage of the simulation, students are divided into "Union" and "Confederate" teams and learn more about the key figures involved in the war. They can then use this to formulate a strategy for winning the simulation - which consists of various armies deciding how best to increase their strength and moving around a map trying to capture their enemies' capital city. A great way to get the class aware of the people and places involved. The Teacher Notes for this first stage of the game are important to have to hand.
For the strategy game, here is an interactive version of the Battle Map that you can save at the end of each lesson over the duration of the unit.
Click here for larger version
Mission B: Events and Themes
In the second stage of the simulation, students are presented with a series of decision points based on key events that took place during the course of the war. For each one, both teams have to decide how their president would have reacted. Correct guesses lead to an increase in their armies' strength; incorrect guesses lead to a decrease. Further movements of armies around the map are then permitted. At the end of the 9 decision points students will start to be forming a clear idea of the various reasons why the Union won and the Confederacy lost. Not only this, but they will be able to comment on whether political, economic or military factors were most important. The Teacher Slideshow Presentation, complete with the decision points, will be needed for this part of the activity.
Click here for full screen version
Mission C: Campaigns and Battles
In this final stage of the game-based unit, students take the role of an advisor to either President Davis, or President Lincoln. They will be given a series of military, economic and political problems to deal with. Their first objective is to choose the course of action which they think their President took in real life (his 'approval rating' of you will then stay high). Their second objective is to correctly answer the factual questions they are given as the game proceeds (your 'factual knowledge' score will then stay high). As they proceed through the simulation, students complete the worksheet. At the end of the game there will be follow-up tasks. Students can play as a Confederate, a Unionist, or even against another player!
QR Code Treasure Hunt: The Events of the American Civil War
Print off these 20 QR codes and put them up around your classroom / school. Students have to answer as many questions as they can in the time available. The completed answers can be used to develop their individual research project stemming from the interactive simulation (above).
What can we learn from the songs of the Civil War?
In this activity, students analyse the lyrics (and, if possible, listen to the music) of popular Confederate and Unionist songs from the civil war. They then have to produce their own civil war song to a civil-war era tune of their choice. Their objective is to produce a song which clearly explains the causes of the war. Finally, they look at the legacy of the civil war on American popular music, using examples from The Band, Elvis Presley, Neil Young and Lynyrd Skynyrd.
Interactive Quizzes from www.classtools.net
Events (100 years ago today): 1917 - In Nebraska, Father Edward J. Flanagan founds Boys Town as a farm village for wayward boys.
Births (50 years ago today): 1967 - Yuzo Koshiro, Japanese composer and producer
Deaths (200 years ago today): 1817 - Tekle Giyorgis I, Ethiopian emperor (b. 1751)
Deaths (0 years ago today): 2017 - Ed Lee, American politician and attorney, 43rd Mayor of San Francisco (b. 1952)
Commemorations:The International Day Of Heavy Metal
RSS Feed | Full week | Get Widget
IB Extended Essay: Marksheet and Guidance
How similar were the Manchurian and Abyssinian Crises?
The Abyssinian Crisis
Roleplay: The Manchurian Crisis | Rolecards
*NEW* Simulation: Can you survive life in the trenches in World War One?
IB Extended Essay Completing the Reflections on Planning and Progress Form
Style Guide: Formatting your Extended Essay
Six Steps for Writing your Extended Essay in IB History
Model Essay: For what reasons, and with what results, did the Civil Rights movement become more radical after 1964?
Civil Rights Movement Student research tasks / presentation instructions
Multimedia lecture : IN WHAT WAYS did the Civil Rights movement become more radical after 1964?
Multimedia lecture : WHY did the Civil Rights movement become more radical after 1964?
IB History Internal Assessments sample studies
Mission: Berlin! (Escape the Room activity on Hitlers consolidation of power)
Student-friendly Sourcework Rubric