Updated October 2014

PBS LearningMedia: Soldiers, Veterans, and War in American Life

High-quality resources offer empathetic intro to controversial topic

Subjects & skills
Skills
  • Character & SEL
  • Critical Thinking

Subjects
  • Social Studies
Grades This grade range is a recommendation by Common Sense Education and not the developer/publisher.
2-12
Common Sense says (See details)
Not yet reviewed
Teachers say (2 Reviews)

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Soldiers, Veterans, and War in American Life has materials to support learning about the causes of war, the details of specific wars, and the impact war has on individuals and countries. Teachers can sort the collection by topic (experiencing, analyzing, commemorating, or returning) or by war (1812 to Iraq/Afghanistan). Lessons are designed for a range of grade levels and include multimedia resources, standards-alignment information, and support materials. Because videos make up a lot of the content, you'll need a projection device to show them during whole-class instruction.

The collection lends itself to a variety of instructional strategies; use these in-depth lessons to create meaningful learning opportunities for your students. Throughout, the videos include some powerful, first-hand accounts of the experiences of war veterans. Additionally, there are some thoughtful activities that examine the roles of African-Americans in various wars. Standout resources include Caustic Causes, D-Day 360, Atomic Bomb, and The Way We Get By: Historical Perspectives.

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Teacher Reviews

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Featured review by
Nathan P. , Classroom teacher
Classroom teacher
Great way to introduce current news topics into your classroom including handouts, vocabulary, and discussion topics.

This site gives a great way to approach discussing events students see on the news, in your classroom. I like that the site includes the informational text summary and the student handouts for each story. The handouts are great to give the students an overview of vocabulary and critical thinking questions that go along with the video. As teachers, we often shy away from questions that students may ask us about things they hear/see/read on the news or in the newspaper, this website gives us a way to incorporate it into our plans. You can make it a daily, weekly, or monthly part of your classroom to keep the students aware of what is going on in the world around them.

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