So part of our Week 2 challenge is to redesign a simple (some might say boring) assignment into a “mission” for students to accomplish, and then create a journal entry explaining it and how the mission transforms the original assignment. Here is that journal entry.
For this task, I focused on the Civil War and combined two activities into one. There are so many battles, sometimes I would have students create a slide with the facts about a Civil War battle and then do a “speed-date” of sorts for sharing content or to fill out a grid with the details of a Civil War battle; both of which always seemed a little flat. I also wanted to challenge students to complete primary source analysis more than a simple worksheet that guides them through questions about the source they are to investigate. To this end, I created this mission, for students to: Work with a partner to create a “breaking news” broadcast video informing the general public of a key battle in the Civil War.
As is shown in the Doc, the mission incorporates choice (the battle), cooperative work (they work with a partner), historical research and public speaking. Hopefully with this as their mission, they will address not only the basics of their battle, but go further and make meaningful connections with the primary source documents as well.