Every school teacher needs to prepare materials for lessons properly. What is interesting in this process is that different teachers prefer various approaches to the preparation. The lesson discussed here is the part of the world history course of the 8th or 9th level in school. It will be dedicated to the discussion of the reasons why the democratic institutions of the Weimar Republic led to the disastrous consequences of the Nazy party monopolizing political power. Although the lesson is dedicated just to discussing historical facts, students will learn bitter lessons of history that cannot be repeated after the lesson.
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The ultimate goal for this lesson is that students will not only remember some crucial facts of European history but understand the core causes of these events. To describe what students will be able to do, Bloom’s taxonomy is quite effective (Stayanchi, 2017). It represents the hierarchical model of knowledge evolution, which starts from remembering facts and basic concepts. The other stages of this process are listed from lowest to highest: understanding, applying, analyzing, evaluating, and creating (Stayanchi, 2017). At the end of the lesson, students will know how to apply their historical knowledge in discussing current events. The rise of Adolf Hitler to power shows how not to succumb to evil forces of violence and racism. It explains that modern democracies should have the proper barriers that will restrict the emergence of radical extremist parties. Besides applying knowledge, students will get basic skills of remembering the facts, which will be useful for their exams, and understanding of basic historical processes.
The assessment procedure will include both formal and informal evaluation. The formal evaluation will consist of grades for the class participation, a small reflective essay, and a final test. Nevertheless, the grading system should not make students stressed about the complicated and demanding assessment form. The class participation will weigh about 10% of the grade because not all students can express their opinions verbally. The major focus will be on the final test, which will include multiple-choice tasks and open questions. As for the informal type of assessment, it will be expressed in the papers of self-assessment that will be given to students at the end of the class. There, they will have the opportunity to express their feelings and concerns about the complexity of the material and the feelings and concerns about the studying process. This immediate, anonymous feedback will allow fixing the way how the lessons are planned, so the needs of the students will be fulfilled.
Essentially, students should carefully read the chapter in the textbook about these events. Except for this, YouTube is full of simple and entertaining videos about the Weimar Republic and National Socialist Party, so it is 100% percent that students will enjoy some of them. For example, there is a great set of episodes about Hitler’s life called “Hitler – OverSimplified”. The author of the video with the use of jokes explains which factors helped the extremist party achieve such influence. Also, the teacher should prepare a presentation and handouts for the lesson. The well-structured paper with the key terms for future tests are present on the British website “Facing history & ourselves”. The plan for such a lesson is attached in Appendix A.
Finally, the teacher should understand the difference in individual characteristics of each student. In one average classroom, there are both children who have deep knowledge of the subject and who have some troubles with understanding material. Therefore, there should not be “fail” grades because they can discourage students to continue studying. As for the students with advanced knowledge, the teacher can give a more detailed article from the academic university scholarship. To be specific, advanced students can read chapter 3 about political parties in Weimar from the book Weimar Germany: Promise and Tragedy written by Eric Weitz. It will help broaden the horizons about these events because students will see more broad picture with other actors.
To sum up, it should be a very informative lesson that students may remember for the whole their life. The topic of the lesson will be the Weimar Republic and the reasons why nazist came to power. One of the possible concerns is that it is extensively informative, so there can be a lack of the interactive part. Through the essay, many details were discussed, including the plan of the lesson, the materials that can be used, the individual approach to different students, and so forth.
Stayanchi, J. (2017). Higher order thinking through bloom’s taxonomy. Kwansei Gakuin University Humanities Review, 22, 117-124.
as little as 3 hours
Plan of the lesson:
- The brief discussion of the animated video “Hitler – OverSimplified” with students (how can you explain why Adolf Hitler had become so powerful dictator?)
- The lecture with the slides from which students will get the majority of the information on the topic.
- The brief look on the handouts when students should realize what are the main concepts in this topic.
- The introduction of the home task. It should be a small essay that reflects the student’s position about the reasons why Hitler seized political power.