Teacher: Kelly Adamowich Subject: Social Studies
    Grade Level: 6 Date: June 5, 2003

Lesson Plan on the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962

l.          Content: I want my students to understand the importance the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962 and the role it played in the Cold War.           

ll.         Prerequisites: Students must be able to identify the island nation of Cuba and its proximity to The United States of America and The Soviet Union. Students must be able to distinguish differences between a communist society and a democratic society. 

lll.        Instructional Objective:

When requested the student will be able to describe the Cuban Missile Crisis and how the United States of America became vulnerable to the threat of a nuclear attack from Cuba in 1962. Included in the description must be reference to the following: 1) the expansion of Soviet military activity in Cuba; 2) how the world viewed the United States of America and the Soviet Union in the late 1950ís and early 1960ís; 3) the threat to world peace as Soviet intermediate-range nuclear missiles were placed in Cuba; and, 4) the outcome that avoided a nuclear war. 

lV.        Instructional Procedures:

Lesson Initiating Activity: The lesson will begin using the world map to identify the countries of Cuba, the Soviet Union and the United States of America. Students will then review the definition of the Cold War as the period of time that extended after World War ll until the early 1990ís. Students need to understand during the Cold war there was heightened tension between two dominant superpower nations, the United States and the Soviet Union, as they competed for economic wealth and military power in the world.  

Core Activity: The teacher will show a PowerPoint presentation and discuss the events that preceded the Cuban Missile Crisis campaign highlighting important facts using a 13-day timeline model filled with historical images. The teacher will then distribute to each student a handout showing Cuba and the United Sates. The students will need to label their maps with the following: Cuba, Florida, Havana, Miami, the distance between the two countries, and the body of water that separates the two countries. Next, students will be shown a large-scale map identifying the missile silos that were located on the island of Cuba. Following this, the students will listen to the broadcasted speech of President John F. Kennedyís televised address to the people of the United States on October 22, 1962. Students will follow along with a written copy of his speech. As an informal written exercise, the teacher will have the students summarize this speech in their journals. The teacher continues to discuss the final days of the campaign when agreements were made concerning the dismantling and removal of nuclear weapons in Cuba. Here the teacher will assign students to read excerpts from documented letters that Khrushchev and Kennedy exchanged before agreeing to settle the Cuban Missile Crisis peacefully.  

Closure Activity: The teacher will encourage students through open discussion to describe in length the following questions about the Cuban Missile Crisis.

        How was the Soviet Union involved in the Cuban Missile Crisis?

        What countries and political leaders were involved during the Cuban Missile Crisis?

        How was the Cuban Missile Crisis a major turning point in the Cold War?

ESOL Considerations: The teacher will provide many visual aids throughout the discussion of the Cuban Missile Crisis. The PowerPoint presentation includes the following visual aids: 1) Photographs of the Soviet military equipment and weapons on the island of Cuba, taken by United States surveillance planes; 2) pictures of the world leaders involved in the Cuban Missile Crisis: 3) a timeline of the 13-day events of the Cuban Missile Crisis. Map visuals include a world map, a regional map of Cuba and the Southeastern United States, a map of Cuba that accents missile locations. Handouts include a Cuba/United States map handout to label and a written copy of President Kennedyís televised speech of October 22, 1962. 

V.        Materials and Equipment:

Computer, Projector and Screen

PowerPoint Presentation on the Cuban Missile Crisis

Map of the World

Regional map of Cuba and Southeastern United States

Map of Cuba accenting missile locations

Audio copy of President John F. Kennedyís televised address to the nation

Written copies of President John F. Kennedyís televised address to the nation as a handout

13-days of the Cuban missile Crisis handout

Regional map of Cuba and Southeastern United States as a handout

Students daily journals

Khrushchev and Kennedy letters of communication as a handout  

Vl.       Assessment/ Evaluation: The teacher will administer a written exercise in which each student will be asked to describe the Cuban Missile Crisis and how the United States of America became vulnerable to the threat of a nuclear attack from Cuba in 1962. In the essay, reference must be made to the following: 1) the expansion of Soviet military activity in Cuba; 2) how the world viewed the United States and the Soviet Union in the late 1950ís and early 1960ís; 3) the threat to world peace as Soviet missiles were placed in Cuba; and, 4) the outcome that avoided a nuclear war. 

Vll.       Follow-up Activities: Students will be divided into four groups. Using an enlarged map showing Cuba and the Florida coastline, each group is given a quarter section of the map to decorate with art supplies. Each quarter section is then assembled as one map onto a bulletin board titled The Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962. Essays are returned with highlighted sentences that the students have described as an interesting fact about the Cuban Missile Crisis. Then, during computer lab, students will assign a topic-title to their highlighted statement, type, print and attach it to the bulletin board. 

Vlll.     Self Assessment: The teacher will know if the students have succeeded in learning the instructional objectives of this lesson by reviewing their written exercises for accurate descriptions of facts and events that took place during the Cuban Missile Crisis. In addition, the teacher will answer the following questions constructively about the lesson delivery:

        Did the lesson go smoothly?

        Where the students enthusiastic about the information they learned?

        Did the students participate actively in classroom discussions?

        Were the students able to follow the directions given on the assignments?

        Did they meet the least minimum requirement that the assessment criteria asked for?

        Did the outcome of the follow-up activity prove to be an effective summary?

        Where there any discrepancies existing between the intended outcome and actual lesson outcome? If so, note changes for future use.
Copyright@2003 by Kelly Adamowich

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