1950s Teacher Resources
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Eisenhower: The Contentious 1950s
Students explore 1950's America. For this American history lesson, students research the McCarthy hearings, Civil Rights, war fatigue, and economic issues of the decades. Students respond to discussion questions about topics.
The Theme of Rebellion in the 1950s as it Occurs in the Arts
Students identify several features of the historic/social/cultural background of the 1950s. They sing and perform a percussion accompaniment to "Summertime Blues" by Eddie Cochran and create artwork in the style of Jackson Pollock.
The Technological Impact on 1950's Culture
Young scholars examine the impact of technological advancements on Cold War America. In this 1950's America lesson, students research politics, Cold War society, suburbia, and consumerism during the decade in order to better understand American societal change after World War II.
Women in the 1950s
Students learn about suburban communities in the 1950s. In this women studies instructional activity, students watch a Power Point presentation about suburban communities in the 1950s. Students look at images from the 1950s and discuss what they think life was like for suburban women.
Eisenhower: The Contentious 1950's
Students examine the various domestic and international problems in the 1950s. They conduct research, write a script, and role-play a family discussing issues at the table at dinnertime in the 1950s.
What Is the Attraction of the 1950s?
Fifth graders, using HyperStudio or PowerPoint, select the ten most important events that happened in the 1950s.
Teens will get a kick out of this presentation, which provides a glimpse of the consumerism and rising pop culture of 1950's America. They will especially appreciate the discussion of "Teen culture" including the music of Elvis, the writings of Salinger, and the rebellion against "whatever you've got." The final slides detail the politics and science of the decade, as well as a discussion question.
Baby Boom and the Culture of the 1950's
Students study the ripple effect of the baby boom generation on history and on their lives today. They discover how the rules and conformity of the 1950's set the stage for the rebellious, anti-establishment sixties. They study the textbook on the 1950-1960 and place important events on time-line.
America in the 1950's
In this America in the 1950's instructional activity, learners read about housing, education, entertainment, and the Cold War in the 1950s. Students then answer 5 questions about this time.
The Technological impact on 1950's culture
Eleventh graders examine the 1950's. In this American History lesson, 11th graders explore the key vocabulary for the unit. Students research the new technology that existed in the 1950's.
Levittown, Automobiles, and Cultures of the 1950's
Students investigate the impact of the automobile on Americans. In this 1950's America lesson, students listen to audio clips, read about Levittown, and explore the Interstate Highway Act from the decade. Students then discuss their impressions of 1950's culture and write essays on the topic.
Chapter 22 – The 1950s
In this 1950's America instructional activity, students read assigned textbook pages about the decade and respond to 47 short answer questions.
Chapter 20 Section 1: 1950's America
In this 1950's America worksheet, students read assigned textbook pages on the topic and respond to 10 short answer questions about 1950's America.
1950s vs. 2000s
Third graders compare and contrast the 1950s to 2000s. In this social studies lesson, 3rd graders research how life has changed throughout the years. Students discuss how people adapt and change. Students write a letter.
Lorna Simpson: Gathered
Lorna Simpson is a photographer who has put together a collection of photos from the 1950s in order to challenge the idea that primary source documents are objective in their portrayal of history. Learners are introduced to Ms. Simpson's art and philosophy as they take a critical look and examine bias throughout history. This teaching packet focuses heavily on the discussion of bias and includes critical thinking activities and topical discussion ideas related to Simpson's art.
Cold War Era Film Censorship: High Noon- a Slice of Americana Or Communist
Students study of the effects of the Cold War on the home front. They analyze the film High Noon according to an abbreviated version of the standards that films were judged by in the early 1950s and determine whether or not High Noon is "fit" to be released to the American public.
Quest for the American Dream in A Raisin in the Sun
Students read the play A Raisin in the Sun by Lorraine Hansberry and discuss "The American Dream" and explore how the social, educational, economical and political climate of the 1950's affected African Americans' quest for "The American Dream".
Civil Rights Movement
Sixth graders become familiar with the conditions of the African Americans in the Deep South during the 1950's and 1960's and Jim Crow Laws. They explain segregation and the approaches taken to desegregate.
Seeking Civil Rights
Students examine the issue of segregation. In this civil rights lesson plan, students use primary sources and pictorial images to explore the issue of segregation in the 1950's. Students work collaboratively and take positions to better understand the complexity of the geo-cultural concept.
The Red Scare in the 1950's
Students can learn about the Red Scare, McCarthyism, and other related topics with lesson plans that focus on the 1950's and communism.