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Great news! We’ve whipped up three classroom activities based on historic newspapers. These activities are aligned with Ohio’s learning standards, and feature real clippings from actual Ohio newspapers! Each activity starts with a blurb of historical context and then outlines the activity. Just drag and drop into your lesson plans! All three activities are suitable for high school students, and can be done in either an in-person or virtual setting. Give us a shout out, and let us know how these worked out for your class!


EXTRA EXTRA: Labor strikes!

Students roleplay members of an Ohio labor union during WWII, and must decide together, with the help of public opinions in the newspaper, whether to strike! Is now the time to argue for better pay and working conditions, or does the patriotic call to action demand production to increase, rather than pause?



The 1950s saw reports and rumors abound about the promises—and dangers—of the atom. Your student must convince the rest of the Atomic Commission whether to encourage or stifle the use of nuclear energy in the US!

THE FULL SCOOP: World’s Fair!

The 1939 World’s Fair in NYC was the first global fair to showcase the art, culture, and scientific achievements of African Americans. Despite this gesture, actual Black employees and visitors weren’t treated fairly. From the lens of an Ohio reporter at the time, your job is to give the full scoop on this innovative event!

These activities were produced as part of the National Digital Newspaper Program, a joint effort between National Endowment for the Humanities and the Library of Congress to partner with state cultural institutions to digitize America’s historic newspapers. The clippings found in today’s activities, along with over 16 million additional pages are available online for free at Chronicling America. Check out even more activities on the project website.

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Posted September 17, 2020
Topics: Industry & LaborMilitaryPresidents & PoliticsDaily Life

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