Harry S. Truman Presidential Library & Museum


Korean War Timeline and Journaling
Author:
Mary Barcroft
Course:
American History, US Wars
Time Frame:
3-4 days
Subjects:
Korean War

Grade Levels:
11, 12

Classroom/Homework Activity to be performed:

Using the Truman Library Korean War Document collection, the students will read primary documents, analyze and evaluate them, synthesize a summary and place them on a timeline.  Once the timeline has been compiled, the students can then go around them room, read their classmate summaries, and journal their responses to each one.

Rationale:

This lesson will help students trace important events of the Korean War, learn to use methods of research, and allow them several opportunities to work with the material on their own terms to allow them to retain the information.

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


NATIONAL HISTORY STANDARD 2

How the Cold War and conflicts in Korea and Vietnam influenced domestic and international politics.

Explain the origins of the Cold War and the advent of nuclear politics. [Hold interpretations of history as tentative] 

Examine the U.S. response to the Chinese Revolution and its impact on the Cold War. [Analyze cause-and-effect relationships] 

Analyze the causes of the Korean War and how a divided Korea remained a source of international tension. [Formulate a position or course of action on an issue] 

Explain the rationale, implementation, and effectiveness of the U.S. containment policy. [Evaluate the implementation of a decision] 

Examine the U.S. response to the Chinese Revolution and its impact on the Cold War. [Analyze cause-and-effect relationships] 

Analyze the causes of the Korean War and how a divided Korea remained a source of international tension. [Formulate a position or course of action on an issue] 

MISSOURI SHOW ME STANDARDS

2. continuity and change in the history of Missouri, the United States and the world

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 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).

3. (A) evaluates the foreign policies of Truman and Eisenhower during the Cold War (e.g., establishment of the United Nations, containment, NATO, Truman Doctrine, Berlin Blockade, Korean War, Iron Curtain, U-2 incident).

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.

2. (A) develops historical questions on a specific topic in United States history and analyzes the evidence in primary source documents to speculate on the answers.

3. (A) uses primary and secondary sources about an event in U.S. history to develop a credible interpretation of the event, evaluating on its meaning (e.g., uses provided primary

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

None. This is intended as an introductory activity for students to discover on their own what happened.

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

http://www.trumanlibrary.org/whistlestop/study_collections/koreanwar/index.php

This is the Truman Library document collection from the Korean War.  It has the documents available in PDF form, organized by month and year. 

Technology Required:

Computer with internet

Full description of activity or assignment.

Before the class, the teacher will (TTW) chose months and years that they want to cover with the students.  Example:  June, 1950 and make slips of paper with this date for the number of students they want to work on that month.  TTW also place a tape line around the classroom to serve as the base for the timeline the students will create.

TTW give students a brief background of the events leading up to June 25, 1950, including the role of Korea at the end of WWII.  TTW bring the students right up to June 25, and then turn them over to do the activity.

TTW divide students into small groups (size based on class size, and/or the number of documents in the month assigned)  by having students draw the prepared slips.  Their partners will be students with matching slips.

In the computer lab, the students will (TSW) go to the Truman Library website (http://www.trumanlibrary.org/whistlestop/study_collections/koreanwar/index.php) and read the documents from their month and year.  They can divide the documents among the group and then discuss what they have discovered.  TSW receive a guide to organize their analysis of primary source document, and a set of instructions for the assignment.

Within each group, TSW choose the document(s) they believe are the most important for that month, and put them above the tape on the wall in chronological order.

TSW summarize the important points of their documents, and recommend those documents their classmates should read in full.

After all students have completed their summaries and posted their documents on the timeline.  All students will, as individuals, move around the room reading the summaries and applicable documents, creating a short journal entry for each period.  (These journal entries can serve as their notes for the Korean War).

 

NOTE:  If you have access to electronic resources such as Moodle, Blackboard, or VoiceThread, this can all be done electronically.  Have students create a Wiki article with their information that is posted on the wall, and set up a discussion forum where they can discuss the documents back and forth between the classes.  This expands the lesson to deeper discussion and consideration.  Electronic resources would also cut down on the amount of time required in the classroom as students can read and reflect outside the classroom and post their reflections as homework.

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

The students will be evaluated on the quality of their summaries and their journal entries by the attached scoring guide.

Handouts for Students

Korean Timeline and Journal Assignment

With your partner(s), go to the following website:

http://www.trumanlibrary.org/whistlestop/study_collections/koreanwar/index.php

Go to the year and month you have been assigned and review the documents listed under that period. 

Use the table below to summarize your findings.

With your partner(s), choose one to three documents that you think are the most important and print them.

Write a short summary of the information in the documents you have chosen, and explain why you think those are the most important ones for the period you are studying.

Find the correct area on the timeline on the wall in the classroom. 

            Tape your Primary source document ABOVE the line in chronological order

            Tape your summary UNDER the line, beneath your primary document.

After all groups have posted their documents:

  • As an individual, go around the room and read the work of your classmates.
  • Take advantage of reading the primary source document provided for you
  • At each station, take notes on the material and create a short journal entry reflecting on the meaning of what you read.

This information will serve as your notes on the Korean War so make sure you take thorough notes and journals.


Primary Document Analysis

 

 

Who wrote document

Who is the

audience

What does it say?

Most important points:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Document Summary

 

We chose the following document:   

 

 

What Does it Say:

 

 

What we think it means:

 

 

Why we chose this as an important document

(Think about cause and effect, influence on the war, who, what, when, where, why)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Korean War Timeline and Journal Rubric

 

 

CATEGORY

4

3

2

1

Weight

Resources

Evaluated all documents available for assigned dates

Evaluated ¾ of documents available for assigned dates

Evaluated ½ of documents available for assigned dates

Did not evaluate at least ½ of the documents assigned

X3

 

 

Total:

Content/Facts

Facts were accurate and complete for summary 

Facts were accurate and complete for almost all of the summary

Facts were accurate and complete for half of the summary.

Most of the facts were inaccurate and incomplete for the summary

X4

 

Total:

Dates

An accurate, complete date has been included for each summary

An accurate, complete date is missing for ¼ of summaries

An accurate, complete date is missing for ½ of summaries

Dates are inaccurate and/or missing for most summaries.

X2

 

Total:

Use of Time

Classroom time was used to work on the project. Conversations were not disruptive and focused on the work.

Classroom time was used to work on the project the majority of the time. Conversations were not disruptive and focused on the work.

Classroom time was used to work on the project the majority of the time, but conversations often were disruptive or did not focus on the work.

Student did not use classroom time to work on the project and/or was highly disruptive.

X2

 

Total:

Spelling and Capitalization

Spelling and capitalization are correct throughout.

There were several (1-3) spelling and capitalization mistakes.

Spelling and capitalization were mostly correct.

The amount of spelling and capitalization errors was unacceptable for a high school level project.

X2

 

Total:

Journaling

The journal notes contain important information for all parts of timeline

The journal notes contain important information for 3/4 of timeline.

The journal notes contain important information for ½ of timeline

Less than half of timeline is recorded I journal.

X5

 

Total:

GRADE    __________/100