When creating a unit for middle school students in Social Studies, getting students to do more than memorize facts and dates is always my number one goal. Students need more than memorization of facts to fully grasp and have a handle on historical content that is vastly multifaceted. The Ohio standards have deemed eighth grade as the point when students intensely study the Civil War. However, how teachers instruct students on the Civil War is entirely up to them. There is an immeasurable amount of ways to go about teaching such a heavy and difficult topic; however, I chose to teach my students by integrating Language Arts into Social Studies.
In order to accomplish this, I have presented a unit plan that details three learning experiences: a building background workshop, literature circles, and a comparison presentation. These learning experiences are meant to immerse students in the content while giving them plenty of opportunities to develop an inquiry-based understanding of the differing perspectives of the Civil War. Students will have the opportunity to take the events of the novel they read and compare it to nonfiction sources that detail what actually occurred during the Civil War in a presentation. This will be the culmination of their learning throughout the unit and will demonstrate their understanding of the multiple perspectives of the Civil War.
Middle Childhood Education
First Advisor Department
Second Advisor Department
Riehle, Megan, "Teaching the Civil War with an Interdisciplinary Approach" (2018). Honors Projects. 374.