Harry S. Truman Presidential Library & Museum


Prohibition and the Constitution
Author:
Elizabeth Dunlap
Course:
Civics/Government
Time Frame:
1 block period for discussion and instruction and 1 block to complete 6 panel cartoons.
Grade Levels:
6, 7, 8

Classroom/Homework Activity to be performed:
  • Students will be assigned the task of making two 6 panel cartoons that illustrates the desire for Prohibition and the repeal of prohibition. The students will create these cartoons after reading the 18th and 21st Amendment and viewing news reel footage from the Prohibition era.
  • Rationale:
  • This lesson is designed to help students understand the reasoning behind Prohibition and the repeal of the 18th amendment with the 21st amendment.
  • District, state, or national performance and knowledge standards/goals/skills met:


    • Show-Me Process Goal 1 Students in Missouri public schools will acquire the knowledge and skills to gather, analyze and apply information and ideas.
    • Show-Me Social Studies Content Standards: 

      1. principles expressed in the documents shaping constitutional democracy in the United States

      3. principles and processes of governance systems

      6. relationships of the individual and groups to institutions and cultural traditions

      7. the use of tools of social science inquiry (such as surveys, statistics, maps, documents)

      Kansas State Standard -Eighth Grade Civics

      K) The student explains how the United States Constitution can be changed through amendments.

    Technology Required:

    Internet Acces

    Full description of activity or assignment.
    • The teacher will begin the lesson by accessing students prior knowledge of the temperance movement and prohibition. The teacher will ask questions like: What is temperance? What is prohibition? Has there ever been a time you have been prohibited from doing something? etc.
    • Then the teacher will explain to the students what prohibition is by using the information from the article on Prohibition to fill in any gaps of information revealed by earlier through questioning.
    • Then, the teacher will show the video clips entitled America Goes Dry with Prohibition and Prohibition Raid from History.com or similar videos from youtube.com
    • Next the teacher will discuss the time period during prohibition and the illegal acts most Americans participated in as a result of the 18th Amendment mentioned in the video clips. Then they will discuss why this amendment was repealed with the 21st Amendment. Students will then view Franklin D. Roosevelt Repeals Prohibition.
    • Next, the students will read the 18th and 21st Amendment and complete a Document Analysis sheet to gain a better understanding of the text. When students finish this handout, teacher will discuss with students their findings and impressions of this action by the government. Then students will read the Presidential Proclamation 2065 by FDR and complete another Document Analysis Handout with a partner or small group. When students have completed this process discuss with them their observations and impressions regarding the repeal of prohibition. Note: During this process students may begin to question how far the government should be allowed to interfere into private life. If the students are knowledgeable about any other legislation regarding this topic you may want to allow this discussion or table it for another day so students can prepare for a debate on this topic.
    • Next remind the students that political cartoons are used by artist to comment on a political topic to show their point of view. (Students should have had previous experience with cartoons in order to complete this assignment. If this not the case, the teacher can show some cartoons from this era and use the analysis page from National Archives to teach students about political cartoon elements). The students are to use the information learned in this lesson to create two 6 panel cartoons. One panel cartoon should illustrate the sentiments of people who supported prohibition and the 18th Amendment. The other panel cartoon should illustrate the government's decision to repeal Prohibition and the reasoning behind the 21st Amendment. The teacher should give time for students to begin the cartoon's in class before assigning it as a homework assignment to ensure students are understanding what they are being asked to complete.

    Full explanation of the assessment method and/or scoring guide:
    • The students will complete a Document Analysis form on the Constitutional Amendments 18 and 21. The worksheet for this assignment was acquired from the National Archives Website. The assignment will be graded for completion and findings will be discussed in classroom.
    • The students will complete a Document Analysis form on the Presidential Proclamation 2065 (Repeal of Prohibition). The worksheet for this assignment was acquired from the National Archives Website. The assignment will be graded for completion and findings will be discussed in classroom.
    • The students will create two 6 panel cartoons illustrating sentiment of people who supported prohibition and the 18th Amendment and the events that lead to the 21st Amendment and the repeal of Prohibition.

      Scoring Rubric

    Criteria 4 3 2 1
    Content All content is in the students' own words and is accurate. Almost all content is in the students' own words and is accurate. At least half of the content is in the students' own words and is accurate. Less than half of the content is in the students' own words and/or is accurate.
    Required Elements Cartoons included all required elements as well as a few additional elements. Cartoons included all required elements and one additional element. Cartoons included all required elements. One or more required elements was missing from the cartoons.
    Clarity and Neatness Cartoons are easy to read and all elements are so clearly written, labeled, or drawn that another student could read cartoon if necessary. Cartoons are easy to read and most elements are clearly written, labeled, or drawn. Another person might be able to read cartoon after asking one or two questions. Cartoons are hard to read with rough drawings and labels. It would be hard for another person to read this cartoon without asking lots of questions. Cartoons are hard to read and one cannot tell what goes where. It would be impossible for another person to read this cartoon without asking lots of questions.
    Spelling & Grammar No spelling or grammatical mistakes on a cartoon with lots of text. No spelling or grammatical mistakes on a cartoon with little text. One spelling or grammatical error on the cartoon. Several spelling and/or grammatical errors on the cartoon.
    Use of Time Used time well during each class period (as shown by observation by teacher) with no adult reminders. Used time well during most class periods (as shown by observation by teacher) with no adult reminders. Used time well (as shown by observation by teacher), but required adult reminders on one or more occasions to do so. Used time poorly (as shown by observation by teacher) in spite of several adult reminders to do so.