The 1930s: Navigating the Great Depression

In preparation for this unit, you must complete the overview reading and watch the contextual videos before beginning this exercise. Reading quiz to follow in a Google Form.

Readings: Videos: Supplemental Materials:
Overview from University of Illinois
Digital History Overview
Crash Course: The Great Depression
Crash Course: The New Deal
Content Flipboard; Video Resources Flipboard
The First 100 Days from the FDR Library


For this topic of study, you will each be responsible for individually creating a VIDEO about one of the topics listed below. You will then work in teams to assemble the videos into an interactive video presentation. These sample videos will be watched and analyzed in class: Ms.W's book trailer and KNEWTON GMAT. You will also be provided with a template for planning the interactivity. Your classmates are relying on you to be thoughtful, thorough, creative and accurate. The purpose of your video is to explain why your topic matters in an examination of the 1930s. Your explanation can include (but is not limited to):

your initials.topic
For example, mine could be: JW.Lange or if I made a sub-intro: JW:EconSubIntro

Next, each topic is paired with an oral history from Studs Terkel's collection, Hard Times. You will read (and when possible listen to) the oral history and analyze it using this protocol. (Submit as a Google doc.)


You will be grouped according to the category of the topic you examined (categories are listed below). Your group will assemble the interactive video. When each group's video is complete, we will compile them with one introductory video and publish them for the world to see. When the videos are compiled, we will have a gallery walk during which you will explore the videos you each created. You must view at least TWO topics from each category: Economic, Political, Social and the Arts. For each video consider: 1) how this topic affects your understanding of the topic you researched, and 2) how the person whose oral history you examined would relate to the topic.


Finally, we will have a fishbowl conversation with a TodaysMeet backchannel chat so the class can discuss various aspects of and respond to questions about the Great Depression.


Topics arranged by Category:

Economic Political Social The Arts

Market Crash


Food Riots

Flint Strike

Glass Steagall

Wagner Act


Bonus Army
Bank Holiday

FDR 3rd Term

Scottsboro Boys

Dust Bowl

Father Coughlin

Women and Minimum Wage
Social Security

Dorothea Lange (Migrant Mother)

Dorothea Lange (Take the Train)

Norwalk Town Hall

Brother, Can you Spare a Dime?


Ben Shahn

Topics and paired Oral History: