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Create a propaganda piece, then write about an American Revolutionary War colonist who is influenced by it

Subject:

Language Arts  

Grades:

6, 7, 8  

Title – My Brother Sam Is Dead — Propaganda and the Revolutionary War
By – Mary
Primary Subject – Language Arts
Grade Level – 6-8

Introduction:

Visual art integration allows students who are strong visual learners or visually/spatially inclined to retain and learn material through creating or evaluating visual arts.

Objective:

Content Objective:

Apply the elements of propaganda and persuasion to the events and controversy of the American Revolution using the novel, My Brother Sam Is Dead, an American Revolutionary War novel.

Creative Objective:

Create a piece of propaganda to persuade a colonist during the American Revolution to join either the British or the Patriots.

Procedure:

  • Students will learn and define the term “propaganda.”
  • Propaganda — the deliberate spreading of such information or rumors; information, ideas, or rumors deliberately spread widely to help or harm a person, group, movement, institution or nation.
  • Students will view and discuss the effectiveness of various pieces of propaganda from World War II (Uncle Sam, Nazi Germany, etc.)
    • What makes a piece of visual propaganda eye-catching?
    • What type of message is each piece sending?
    • How does propaganda play on your fears and/or emotions?
  • Pose a question for discussion: What would propaganda look like if the British and Patriots used propaganda to try to convince colonists to join their side during the American Revolution?
    • What negative things would the British say about the Patriots? What negative things would the Patriots say about the British?
  • Students will then be broken into pairs. Their task is to create a single piece of propaganda using the following process:
    • Choose a side you wish to support with your propaganda (British or Patriots).
    • Create a slogan to use on your propaganda poster. Your slogan can either be positive and support your side, or negative towards your opposing side.
    • Decide upon an eye-catching, visual image to go with your slogan.

Assessment:

  • Based on the piece of propaganda they created, each individual student will then compose a piece of creative writing. Students will create a persona of a colonist during the Revolutionary War.
  • Their essay must discuss why they have decided to support either the British or the Patriots during the war.
  • The essay will be paired with their piece of propaganda.

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