Harry S. Truman Presidential Library & Museum


FDR's Presidential Elections
Author:
Jay Martens
Course:
US History
Time Frame:
1 class period
Subjects:
2016 Teacher Conference

Grade Levels:
9, 10, 11, 12

Classroom/Homework Activity to be performed:
  • The activity is a 1-day activity with any work not finished during the class period to be completed for homework.  The activity will have the students utilize one of the computer labs and/or the textbook to research basic information about the four presidential elections of Franklin D. Roosevelt (1932, 1936, 1940, and 1944) to complete “FDR’s Presidential Election – Organizing Information Chart” and to provide the contextualization for their later analysis of various political cartoons from those elections.  They will need to analyze eight different political cartoons using the OPTIC method of document analysis.  The goal of their analysis will be to conclude which presidential election each of the political cartoons was created during and to provide an explanation of which elements from the cartoons led them to their conclusions.

Rationale:
  • The activity will help students with three of the nine Historical Thinking Skills defined by the College Board for students to develop within AP history courses.  The Historical Thinking Skills focused on in this activity include Contextualization, Appropriate Use of Relevant Historical Evidence, and Synthesis.  These Historical Thinking Skills will be developed within the Thematic Learning Objective of Politics and Power (POL) defined by the College Board for students in AP history courses.  Finally, the write-up of the students’ conclusions will simulate the Short-Essay Questions (SEQs) that will be on the AP history exams in the spring.

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


  • Literacy.RI.11-12.1 – Cite strong and thorough textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text, including determining where the text leaves matters uncertain.
  • Literacy.W.11-12.1 – Write arguments to support claims in an analysis of substantive topics or texts, using valid reasoning and sufficient evidence.
  • Literacy.W.11-12.9 – Draw evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.

Secondary materials (book, article, video documentary, etc.) needed:
  • Carnes, Mark C., and John A. Garraty.  The American Nation:  A History of the United States. 12th ed., Pearson Education, 2006.

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

 

 

  • Godal, Eric.  “I Will Never Divide America!”  The New Republic, 9 Oct. 1944.  Presidential Campaigns:  A Cartoon History 1789-1976, Indiana University, www.indiana.edu/~libsalc/ cartoons/1944.html.  Accessed 3 Aug. 2016.
  • Warren.  “Rail-Splitter.”  Philadelphia Public Ledger, reprinted Review of Reviews, Oct. 1932.  Presidential Campaigns:  A Cartoon History 1789-1976, Indiana University, www.indiana.edu/ ~libsalc/cartoons/1932.html.  Accessed 3 Aug. 2016.
  • Kirby, Rollin.  “The Frustrated Salesman.”  New York Post, 18 Oct. 1940.  Presidential Campaigns:  A Cartoon History 1789-1976, Indiana University, www.indiana.edu/~libsalc/cartoons/1940.html.  Accessed 3 Aug. 2016.
  • “Economic Peril.”  White Plains Republic, May 1932.  “A New Deal for Texas Parks—HTML Exhibit,” Texas Parks and Wildlife, tpwd.texas.gov/spdest/findadest/historic_sites/ccc/new_deal_texas_html/ 1.phtml.  Accessed 3 Aug. 2016.
  • Orr, Carey.  “Just One Eclipse After Another.”  Chicago Tribune, reprinted Review of Reviews, Oct. 1932.  Presidential Campaigns:  A Cartoon History 1789-1976, Indiana University, www.indiana.edu/ ~libsalc/cartoons/1932.html.  Accessed 3 Aug. 2016.
  • Orr, Carey.  “The Boys Started Something Way Back in ’76.”  Chicago Tribune, 1936.  Presidential Campaigns:  A Cartoon History 1789-1976, Indiana University, www.indiana.edu/~libsalc/cartoons/ 1936.html.  Accessed 3 Aug. 2016.
  • “Office of the V.P.”  Washington Post, 15 Oct. 1944.  Harry S. Truman Library and Museum, National Archives and Records Administration, www.trumanlibrary.org/whistlestop/qq/rk_2.htm.  Accessed 3 Aug. 2016.
  • Darling, J.N.  “Whistling Through the Graveyard,” New York Tribune, 25 June 1936.  “The Editorial Cartoons of J.N. ‘Ding’ Darling,” The Cowles Library Collection, Drake University, ddr.lib.drake.edu/ cdm/singleitem/collection/ddarling/id/4875/rec/1.  Accessed 3 Aug. 2016.

Full description of activity or assignment.
  • Teacher will secure mobile computer lab for the class period.
  • Teacher will distribute copies of the “FDR’s Presidential Election – Organizing Information Chart” to each student. 
  • Students will use the internet and/or textbook to research basic facts about each of Franklin D. Roosevelt’s presidential elections (1932, 1936, 1940, and 1944) to complete the “FDR’s Presidential Election – Organizing Information Chart.”
  • Students will return their computer to the mobile lab and pick up copies of the “FDR’s Presidential Election – Political Cartoons” (attached) and “FDR’s Presidential Election – Answer Document” (attached).
  • Students will analyze each of the eight political cartoons using the OPTIC method of document analysis using the “Analyzing Documents – SOAPS and OPTIC” handout (attached) that they have received earlier in the year and that should be in their class binders.
  • Students will draw conclusions about which of the presidential elections each of the political cartoons was created during and provide an explanation of at least two elements from the political cartoons that led them to their conclusions.
  • Students will submit the “FDR’s Presidential Election – Answer Document” once they have completed drawing their conclusions and providing their explanations.

Full explanation of the assessment method and/or scoring guide:
  • The student responses on the Answer Document will be scored in the same manner as the Short-Essay Questions (SEQs) on the AP history exams.  The answers to each of the political cartoons will count as a single Short-Essay Question and will earn the student a raw score of three points.  The first point will be earned if the student correctly identifies the presidential election that the political cartoon was drawn during.  The second point will be earned if the student identifies an element within the political cartoon and adequately explains how that element helped lead to their conclusion.  The third point will be earned if the student identifies a second element within the political cartoon and adequately explains how that element helped lead to their conclusion.
  • With three points to be earned for each of the political cartoons, there are a total of 24 points that can be earned for the student’s raw score in this activity.  The total number of raw points will be multiplied by five to produce an assignment score out of a possible 120 points.
  • http://trumanlibrary.org/educ/FDR-Presidential-Elections-Attachments.pdf