Education Resource Portal

Guiding Questions and Activities


Investigating Continuity and Change over Time (CCOT)

Kind Theme/Skill Topic Category Grades

Take a look at the American Red Cross Influenza Mask Bundles and Bag as a starting place to look at health epidemics throughout history. Compare epidemics like Ebola, MARS, Mumps with the Spanish Flu. Take a look at reasons for epidemics; preparation, prevention, and treatment; and outcomes. How have things changed since the Spanish Flu and how are they similar?

Activity CCOT WWI Red Cross, medical 6-8

Using the African American tag on the portal, direct students to analyze the sources to define the legal status of African Americans before and after the Civil War in Minnesota. Plot changes to legal status on a 2-D timeline, showing the changes by having the x-axis measure time and the y-axis measure relative level of legal self-determination and choice for the African American community.

Activity CCOT Civil War African Americans 9-12

Instruct students to make a chart comparing the experiences of soldiers during the war to the experiences of soldiers today. How were they impacted differently by combat? In what ways do their experiences remain the same?

Activity CCOT, E Civil War, WWI soldiers 6-8

Language and terminology has changed over time. Select a source from the portal with text and transcribe it into the current day vernacular. Decide: would this be an effective piece of evidence to convince a contemporary person of the argument being made?

Activity CCOT, E Civil War, WWI general 9-12

Have students create a timeline of all or part of the war period, using sources from the portal to illustrate the impact of events on people. Timelines could be created on paper or on an app like Sutori.

Activity CCOT Civil War, WWI general 6-8

Look at the Prohibition themed items in the WWI portal. Ask students to discuss how similar arguments might be made and how propaganda was used to argue for and against prohibition during this era compared to the legalization of medical or recreational marijuana today.

Activity CCOT WWI prohibition 9-12

Select a set of items from the portal that are related to communication, either between individuals or mass (letters, posters, buttons, etc.). Ask students how these items reflect the communication methods of the time and determine if they were effective ways to communicate. Then, ask students if those same methods would be effective ways to communicate a similar message today. What are some equivalent contemporary forms of communication, mass or individual?

Activity CCOT Civil War, WWI general 9-12

Assign students a social movement topic (prohibition, women's suffrage, etc.) and provide them with the following prompt: Look at items in the portal for your topic and imagine for a moment that the reform was unsuccessful. Predict what subsequent eras would be like had that reform not been made. Would we have made that reform at some point or would it still be a concern?

Activity CCOT Civil War, WWI prohibition, suffrage, abolition, nativism 9-12

Using the items in the portal, describe what daily life would have been like for an American soldier in WWI. Based on the items in the portal, students create a chart comparing how would the soldiers' experience be similar or different to those who fought in the (pick 1) Spanish-American War, the US-Dakota War, or the Civil War.

Activity CCOT WWI soldiers, camp life 9-12

Direct students to find a particular person highlighted in the portal and conduct additional research on that person. Then, write an obituary about that person’s life, challenges, and accomplishments.

Activity CE, CCOT, E Civil War, WWI general 6-8, 9-12

Ask students to choose a specific object from the portal. Assign students to complete additional research on their chosen object. Students use their research to write a newspaper column explaining the new invention or innovation of this object. A high-quality article will include who, what, when, where, why, how, and the potential impact of the object on life at the time.

Activity CCOT Civil War, WWI industry, weapons, medical 9-12

Look through the artifact collection from WWI and have students choose an item that is an older version of something we have today. Have them create a chart comparing the item they found with the modern version. Extension: Students write a paragraph explaining how life may have been different during WWI if this item was the modern version for it. OR Students write a paragraph explaining how life today would be different if the item hadn’t changed and was the exact same as it was during WWI.

Activity CCOT WWI general 6-8, 9-12

Take a look at the picture of the Statue of Germania being removed from a building outside of St. Paul. Discuss possible reasons (both pro and con) for the removal of that statue. Then, have students compare the removal of the statue to similar events today (ex. renaming of Ramsey Middle School to Justice Page Middle School, removing the confederate flag, etc.).

Activity CCOT WWI nativism 6-8, 9-12