Harry S. Truman Presidential Library & Museum


Lesson Plans for Candy Bomber Activity
Author:
Derek Frieling
Course:
World History
Time Frame:
Parts of two class periods.
Subjects:
Berlin Airlift
,
Berlin Airlift

Grade Levels:
10

Classroom/Homework Activity to be performed:

The daring activities of Gail Halvorsen will be presented in class.  Students will then be asked to formulate a plan to create and hopefully implement their own service activity.

Rationale:

Gail Halvorsen provided the epitome of selflessness, as he became the Candy Bomber during the Berlin Airlift.  This service activity for betterment of humanity is a spirit that is desirable to instill in the youth of our society.  In addition to addressing American and World History content standards, the goals of the social studies is to instill virtuous civic responsibility in our students.

District, state, or national performance and knowledge standards/goals/skills met:


MO Standards: 

2aD-Describe and evaluate the evolution of the United States domestic and foreign policy including the Cold War.

2bG-Examine the wars of the 20th century, including:  causes, comparisons, consequences, and peace efforts.

3B-Compare and contrast governmental systems, current and historical, including those that are democratic and totalitarian.

7B-Distinguish between primary and secondary sources.

Kansas Standards

Benchmark 3: The student uses a working knowledge and understanding of individuals, groups, ideas, developments, and turning points in the era of the Cold War (1945-1990).

1. (K) explains why the United States emerged as a superpower as the result of World War II.

2.(A) analyzes the origins of the Cold War (e.g., establishment of the Soviet Bloc, Mao’s victory in China, Marshall Plan, Berlin Blockade, Iron Curtain).

Benchmark 5: The student engages in historical thinking skills.

1. (A) analyzes a theme in United States history to explain patterns of continuity and change over time.

Secondary materials (book, article, video documentary, etc.) needed:
Primary materials (book, article, video documentary, etc.) needed:

Gail Halvorsen’s presentation at Truman Library-

http://www.trumanlibrary.org

 

Gail Halvorsen’s video footage-

http://www.trumanlibrary.org

 

Halvorsen, Gail S.  The Berlin Candy Bomber.  Springville, UT:  Horizon Publishers, 1997.

 

Airlift Photographs- http://www.trumanlibrary.org/whistlestop/study_collections/berlin_airlift/large/index.php?action=photographs

 

Documents Concerning the Berlin Airlift- http://www.trumanlibrary.org/whistlestop/study_collections/berlin_airlift/large/index.php?action=docs

 

Berlin Airlift Cartoons- http://www.trumanlibrary.org/whistlestop/BERLIN_A/LSC.HTM

 

Chocolate Flyer Photographs- http://www.trumanlibrary.org/whistlestop/BERLIN_A/CHOCOLAT.HTM

Technology Required:

Primary and secondary sources may be acquired via the Internet. 

 

WebQuest

The Berlin Airlift and the Candy Bombers

Background to the Berlin Airlift

Read the article concerning the Berlin Airlift found here and answer the following questions.

http://www.trumanlibrary.org/teacher/berlin.htm

 

*How many zones of occupation was Germany divided into?

 

*Why was Truman considered “soft” on communism?

 

*Besides economic security for the German people, what advantage to the United States would a “Trizone” create?

 

*What motivations did the Soviet Union have for pursuing a Berlin blockade?

 From the Director of the CIA

Read Director of the CIA R. H. Hillenkoetter’s memorandum to President Truman found here.  Answer the following question.

http://www.trumanlibrary.org/whistlestop/study_collections/berlin_airlift/large/documents/index.php?documentdate=1948-06-09&documentid=15-1&studycollectionid=Berlin&pagenumber=1

 

*How accurate is Hillenkoetter’s prediction in his letter to President Truman?

 President Harry Truman

*Describe President Truman’s opinion of the Soviet Union concerning the Berlin Blockade.  Click here to listen to his audio clips.  Scroll to the audio file links at the bottom of the page.

http://www.trumanlibrary.org/whistlestop/study_collections/berlin_airlift/large/index.php?action=other

 On the Lighter Side

View some of the cartoons drawn by Staff Sergeant Jake Schuffert found here.  Answer the following questions.

http://www.trumanlibrary.org/whistlestop/BERLIN_A/LSC.HTM

 

*What were Jake Schuffert’s motivations for drawing his cartoons?

 

*Choose one cartoon and describe what view Schuffert was trying to express.

The Candy Bomber

Read the excerpts from The Berlin Candy Bomber and watch the video on Gail Halvorsen to answer the following questions.  Pay special attention to pages 101-105, 116-118, and 121-123.

http://www.trumanlibrary.org/video/video/Halvorsen.htm

 

*What were Gail Halvorsen’s motivations for beginning the candy bombing raids?

 

*Many of the same pilots that delivered supplies in the Berlin Airlift had bombed Germany during World War II.  How could the pilots change their attitude about the German people in such a short period of time?

 

*Would have Gail Halvorsen’s superiors supported his efforts if he had asked permission prior to the candy bombing raids?

 

*What lasting impact did the Berlin Airlift and candy bombing raids have on history?

 Summation

*How did the Berlin Airlift support Truman’s policy of containment?

 

*How might have Truman’s handling of the blockade lead to greater tension in the Cold War?

 

*Do you agree with Truman’s handling of the Berlin Blockade?  Explain.

Full description of activity or assignment.

This lesson will be introduced in the Cold War unit when the Berlin Blockade and Berlin Airlift is addressed.  As the airlift is discussed, students will be provided access to the primary and secondary sources listed above.  Most important are the personal film footage of Gail Halvorsen and his detailing of becoming the Candy Bomber and “Uncle Wiggly Wings.”  Students will gain an insight to the personal sacrifices necessary to develop a service mindset.

Following the presentation on the Berlin Airlift and the Candy Bomber, students will be asked to fill out the attached reflection worksheet.  Once the sheet has been filled out, a class discussion will be used to have students share their viewpoints and ideas for service programs.

 

Reflection on the Candy Bomber

 

1.    What part of Gail Halvorsen’s story touched you the most?

 

 

 

 

 

2.    What did Halvorsen consider to be most important to achieve personal satisfaction?

 

 

 

 

 

3.    What short-term effects were there because of the Candy Bomber?

 

 

 

 

4.    What long-term effects were there because of the Candy Bomber?

 

 

 

 

5.    Is it still possible to affect people in the manner that Halverson did?  Explain.

 

 

 

 

 

6.    Describe a person or group that you know that could use your assistance.

 

 

 

 

7.    Describe a service program you could implement.

Full explanation of the assessment method and/or scoring guide:

Students will be evaluated on their participation in class, including filling out the worksheet.  As the sheet is based on personal reflections, there can be no right or wrong answers.  Therefore, it will be graded on completion and participation in the class discussion

     Ultimately, the goal of this activity is to instill a service attitude in students.  Hopefully, students will become civic-minded and take steps to implement the service programs that they brainstormed in class.  If the teacher wishes, credit can be provided for implementation of these programs.