Totalitarianism Teacher Resources

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Students compare/contrast totalitarianism and democracy and examine their roles in World War II. They read a handout, complete a Venn diagram, and participate in a class discussion.
Learners explore the meaning of totalitarianism.  In this World History lesson, students evaluate totalitarianism as it relates to Hannah Arendt's life then share their findings with the class.
Students consider the differences between totalitarianism and democracy. In this comparative politics lesson, students will read a handout describing the major components that comprise totalitarianism and democracy, then they will apply what they have learned to Hitler's choices during WWII. Students will engage in a class discussion, research, and fill in a Venn diagram.  
Ninth graders present the major cultural, economic and political forces in Germany, Italy & Japan that allowed for the rise and dominance of totalitarian regimes in that country. They discuss how the above listed forces brought the three countries together to form the Axis Powers and design and create a visual representation.
Students examine the growth of authoritarian societies. Focusing on North Korea, they watch video clips looking for examples of totalitarianism and identify the problems there. They write letters to the editors of local newspapers expressing their views on how to resolve the nuclear issue with North Korea.
Imagine a meeting between President Bush and Putin. Get your class thinking about global awareness, democracy, and totalitarian modes of government. They examine how two leaders approach major governmental issues and run their countries in different ways.
Introduce the concept of Totalitarian government. This informative slide show outlines key reasons, events, and rulers that employ a Totalitarian Doctrine.
Students examine the rise of totalitarian governments after World War I. Using the Russian Revolution, they examine the causes and effects of this revolution and the role of Lenin. They use Stalin's rise to power to connect the relationships between economic and political policies. They discuss how Fascism rose after World War I as well.
This interesting role-playing activity helps your class understand some of the qualities of totalitarianism by assigning each one as a spy or comrade citizen for a duration of five days. Students should find this highly engaging and informative; however, you will have to fill in the blanks of this under-developed lesson. There is no explanation of the foundational knowledge required prior to starting this activity, nor is there any description of the desired outcome or final assessment/discussion. Lots of potential!
Ninth graders analyze the differences among various forms of government to determine how power is acquired and used. They need to have a strong background regarding the rise of totalitarian governments after The Great War and the reasons for Adolph Hitler's anger over the vindictiveness of the Treaty of Versailles.
Understanding the causes of war is one way (possibly) to prevent it. World War II is used as a case study to facilitate an understanding of reasons why wars start. Topics covered included Totalitarianism, scarcity of resources, need for political and economic freedom. Unfortunately this presentation delves deeper into aspects and facts of WWII and fails to act as a true case study. It's still a wonderful slide-show on WWII and even includes quiz questions.
Help your class understand how Hitler achieved power prior to World War II. A strong presentation outlines the post-World War I social and economic context that primed Eastern Europe for a totalitarian dictator. It presents the vocabulary and concepts in a logical and understandable way.
In this case study instructional activity, students complete a web detailing the characteristics of Stalinist Russia then define some key terms.
In this Stalinist Russia activity, students complete a graphic organizer by filling in characteristics of life under Stalin's totalitarian state.
In this Adolf Hitler study guide worksheet, students read a brief overview pertaining the Fascist totalitarian dictator and then respond to 3 reflection questions.
Rather than just memorizing and regurgitating a definition, your young historians will determine on their own what critical attributes the concept of absolutism entails! This excellent lesson plan involves analysis of a period portrait of King Louis XIV of France, and then group work to review, analyze, and classify several different examples of absolute monarchs.
This lesson plan includes an excellent informational text with background information on the Holocaust, as well as worksheets, book report guidelines, and discussion questions on Lois Lowry's Number the Stars. There is also an extension instructional activity relating the atrocity of the Holocaust to the modern conflict in Africa between the Sudanese government and African tribes.
Three regents questions, a compare and contrast exercise, and a bit of topical review on the similarities and difference of Athens and Sparta. Kids review the material, read several passages (not included), then work together to complete the regents questions and Venn diagram. Ancient Greek review, check.
If you'd like to prompt some great discussions in your history class, this presentation will surely get your class talking. Addressing 19th century liberalism in Europe (including influences from England, France, America, and Ireland), the slides focus on key information and differences between the different schools of thought. The final slide, which details possible challenges to liberalism, could be applied to modern-day issues.
High schoolers participate in a simulation of inflation to help them consider how the German depression of the early 1920's contributed to the support of Adolf Hitler. They discuss how they would vote in a similar situation.

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