Studying Perspectives of Pre-Civil War Disunion w/Student-made Time Capsules

Friday marked the culmination of our study about what caused the Civil War. After a brief quiz, students were able to explore the time capsules which their classmates curated. Well this was largely designed to address learning styles (kinesthetic, interpersonal, naturalistic), we also hit some important learning targets:

  1. SS.H.2.6-8.MC. Analyze how people’s perspectives influenced what information is available in the historical sources they created.
  2. Research skills such as corroboration, validation, and interpretation.
  3. Collaboration and Social Work skills.
  4. SS.IS.1.6-8. Create essential questions to help guide inquiry about a topic.

Essential to this lesson is being able to understand how a nation become frayed over its political disagreements. Conflict like this can be avoided when students learn to listen. The Civil War was far more complicated than slave owners vs. abolitionists. Diverse perspectives and the inability to compromise led to disunion. Being able to explore these perspectives goes a long way to building students’ capacity to empathize and problem solve. This is a crucial element to social studies and one we’ll build upon as we choose the “next” President in 1860. Who can save a country with such diverse and polarizing opinions on how to shape the country’s future?

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