Monday, November 26, 2012

Dinner Party Lesson Plans

One of the most difficult things about planning a wedding was the seating arrangements. My wedding had tables of 8 and we struggled to put together groups with things in common who would enjoy each other's company.

This process got me thinking that this would make for a great lesson plan! Students have to think critically about various figures in history to seat them at a table with things they have in common. It makes for a great review after presenting information on a lot of people. Here are 2 I've used in World History that you can download and 1 from US History:

Age of Enlightenment Salon Party

One of the most difficult units for my World History II students is the Enlightenment. There are a lot of very similar people they need to know, all with difficult names. This Enlightenment Salon Party is a fantastic way for students to process their learning. I first present the important figures of the Enlightenment in this powerpoint you can download for free here. Here are some sample images from the powerpoint:


French Revolution Dinner Party

This next lesson on the French Revolution has students place 8 key figures like Robespierre and Louis XVI in a way that keeps the dinner from turning into a "reign of terror".  Besides just identifying people as Jacobins or monarchists, students must make connections between various ideas and philosophies. The lesson includes 8 short biographies students can read in groups and discuss. Here are some sample images from this lesson:


Gilded Age Dinner Party

Lastly, for American History, I created this lesson for a Gilded Age Dinner Party that includes both Robber Barons and Progressives. Like in the French Revolution lesson, students read biographies of 8 people and must think critically to seat them next to others and justify their seating arrangements.

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