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Activity Overview


The Reign of Terror is a well-known component of the French Revolution, mostly due to the excessive use of the guillotine to preserve the Revolution. This activity asks students to look beyond the “chopping block” to discover the political motivations of the man behind the Terror: Maximilien Robespierre.

Students will create a timeline of the Reign of Terror during the French Revolution. They should be sure to include the following information and events in their timeline:

  • The motivations for the use of terror to preserve the Revolution
  • Methods Robespierre used to consolidate his power
  • When popular support turned against Robespierre

For an alternative to the timeline layout, have students create a timeline poster to incorporate into a presentation or gallery walk. You can add more than one template to this assignment to give students lots of options and adjust the instructions accordingly.


Reign of Terror Timeline Events

  • September 5,1793 - Reign of Terror Begins
  • October 16, 1793 - Death of a Queen
  • October 31, 1793 - Execution of Girondins
  • December 25, 1793 - Robespierre Justifies Authority
  • June 8, 1794 - Festival of the Supreme Being
  • June 10, 1794 - New Legislation for Counterrevolutionaries
  • June 28, 1794 - Reign of Terror Ends

Extended Activity

Students can create other “rise and fall” timelines for figures including Napoleon, Louis XVI, or Marat. In addition, students can identify and analyze the times Robespierre overstepped his authority, and sowed the seeds for his demise.

Lesson Plan Reference

Grade Level 9-10

Difficulty Level 2 (Reinforcing / Developing)

Type of Assignment Individual or Group

Type of Activity: Timelines



Template and Class Instructions

(These instructions are completely customizable. After clicking "Use This Assignment With My Students", update the instructions on the Edit Tab of the assignment.)



Student Instructions

Create a timeline of the Reign of Terror in France.

  1. Click "Start Assignment".
  2. Identify important events, policies, and actions taken during the Reign of Terror.
  3. Describe the events, policies, and actions in the description box.
  4. Create an illustration using appropriate scenes, characters, and items.
  5. Save and submit your storyboard.


Rubric

(You can also create your own on Quick Rubric.)



Timeline
Create a timeline of important events and people, and explain their significance. Make sure the dates are correct, and the Photos for Class pictures are historically accurate or significant.
Proficient
33 Points
Emerging
25 Points
Beginning
17 Points
Events and Dates
The events chosen for the timeline are significant and important to the overall understanding of the time period. The dates provided are correct.
Most of the events chosen for the timeline are significant and important to the overall understanding of the time period. Most of the dates provided are correct.
Some of the events chosen for the timeline are significant. There may be missing events, or events that are irrelevant. Too many dates may be incorrect.
Explanations/Descriptions
The explanations or descriptions provided for each event are accurate and provide insight into the significance of the events.
The explanations or descriptions provided for each event are mostly accurate and attempt to provide insight into the significance of the events.
There are several glaring inaccuracies in the explanations or descriptions of the events. There may be little or no insight int the significance of the events, or the information provided may be too limited or missing.
English Conventions
There are 0-2 mistakes in spelling, grammar, and mechanics.
There are 3-4 mistakes in spelling, grammar, and mechanics.
There are 5 or more mistakes in spelling, grammar, and mechanics.




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Image Attributions
  • Paris • Moyan_Brenn • License Attribution (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/)
  • Supreme Court of the United States • Phil Roeder • License Attribution (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/)


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