You are on page 1of 2


Subject U.S. History: World War I Date_10/28/13

Lesson Goal: The goal of this lesson is to introduce students to the restrictions and limitations
placed on the rights of United States citizens during World War I. During WWI the United States
passed legislation that limited the rights of citizens in order to prevent dissention from the war
effort. To understand these restrictions students will complete a Take a Stand activity as well as
analyze primary source documents.

Learning Objectives:
Identify the ways in which rights were restricted during World War I
Analyze primary source documents for purpose and content
Constructing arguments on liberty vs. security and liberty vs. patriotism

Ohio Academic Content Standards:
American Government: Role of the People: 16.In the United States, people have rights
which protect them from undue governmental interference. Rights carry responsibilities
which help define how people use their rights and which require respect for the rights of
NCSS Thematic Strands:
V. Individuals, Groups, and Institutions: Processes: Analyze instances of tensions
between individual expression and group conformity;
V. Individuals, Groups, and Institutions: Processes: Understand examples of tensions
between belief systems and governmental actions and policies.

Anticipatory Set:
Discuss daily statements
Discuss what patriotism means. Can it be a bad thing?

Instructional Strategies:
Take a stand activity
Cooperative learning
Class discussion

PowerPoint with Take a stand statements
Document A: Eugene Debs speech
Document B: Schenk pamphlet
Document C: The Sedition Act
Graphic organizer

Activity One: Discuss anticipatory set. (3-5 minutes)
Activity Two: After discussing anticipatory set inform students that they will be
completing a Take a Stand activity. For this activity students will be up out of their seats
and will need a clear path from one side of the room to the other. One side of the room
represents strongly agreeing with a statement while the other represents strongly
disagreeing with the statement. Students will be presented with five different statements
using the PowerPoint slides. For each statement students will stand on either side of the
room depending on whether or not they agree with the statement. After students have
taken their place on the spectrum of agree/disagree sample responses from students on
either side about why they feel the way they do. Repeat this process for each statement.
(10-15 minutes)
Activity Three: Have students return to their seats. Pass out Document A: Debs speech
and Document B: Schenk pamphlet. Have students work in groups of 2-3 to complete the
graphic organizer for the two documents. Monitor students and allow sufficient time for
them to complete the organizer on their own. After 10-15 minutes hold a classroom
discussion calling on groups to complete the graphic organizer as a class using the
interactive white board. Ask students if they feel Debs or Schenk was unpatriotic or anti-
American. (20-25 minutes)
Activity Four: Using the interactive white board read aloud Document C: The Sedition
Act and discuss the prison sentences of Debs and Schenk. As a class discuss whether or
not students believe either men committed a crime or if the Sedition Act limited freedoms
too much. (5-10 minutes)

Accommodations for Special Learners:
Difficult vocabulary terms defined in readings
Graphic organizer
Monitoring of students on IEP/struggling readers during group work

Assessment (formal or informal):
Graphic organizer (informal-formative)
Group discussion (informal-formative)