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Activity Overview


While studying WWII, it's essential for students to understand how events unfolded and connected. Because there were several countries involved and several theaters of war, it can be overwhelming to examine every single event that occurred. By creating a visual timeline, students will be able to examine at least five major events between 1939 and 1941 and analyze how they affected the course of World War 2.

Teachers can pre-select the events they would like students to include into the timeline, or students can choose their own. In order for students to thrive in this assignment, they should be encouraged to research ten events, and select the five that they found to be the most interesting.

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 update the instructions accordingly.

Example Events for a World War II Timeline


  • September 1, 1939 - Germany Invades Poland
  • June 14, 1940 - The Germans Take Paris
  • September 27,1940 - The Tripartite Pact
  • March 11, 1941 - President Franklin D. Roosevelt signs the Lend-Lease Deal
  • December 7, 1941- Japan Attacks Pearl Harbor

Extended Activity

Students can create an entire class timeline. Students will be required to print out their events and cut and paste them to a larger timeline in the front of the class. Before each student adds an event they should share with the class the event that they are choosing and include at least one fact or description of significance of the event. This works especially well if they create their timeline as a poster.

Lesson Plan Reference

Grade Level 6-12

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 detailing at least 5 major events in WW2 between 1939 and 1941.

  1. Click "Start Assignment".
  2. Identify important battles and events and type them into the titles of each cell.
  3. Describe the battles and events 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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World War II: (1939-1941)





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