Nixon's resignation speech is one of few presidential resignation speeches in American history. It provides great insight into his beliefs, his policies, and how he still cared about his public image even in the wake of scandal. Using a grid, students should select several quotes from the speech and explain their meaning and rationale as well as how they think the American public responded. By inferring how the public may have responded or how the student interprets Nixon's words, students will gain a better understanding of how deeply the scandal affected the country and the beliefs the nation held.
Have students create a grid on Bill Clinton’s speech in regards to his affair with Monica Lewinsky. This will allow students to create a comparison of two presidents and their responses to scandal. Students will also be able to see how the public responded to such a scandal and speech, and any ripple effects that still exist today. In addition, it will better serve students as practice in analyzing, synthesizing, and understanding primary source documents and presidential speeches.
Grade Level 9-12
Difficulty Level 3 (Developing to Mastery)
Type of Assignment Individual, Partner, or GroupCommon Core Standards
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Create a storyboard analyzing quotes from Nixon's resignation speech, focusing on what he was saying and how it was received by the American public.
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