Debate over Independence

Debate over Independence
Identify the personalities behind the American Revolution.
Compare and contrast the patriot and loyalist positions prior to the Declaration of
Understand the costs and risks of American independence.
The class is having a debate on Independence! You have been assigned a historical figure from colonial
America for your biographical essay. You will now become that figure. When you enter class on debate
day, you will assume the role of the historical figure that you have been studying. (You are even
welcome to dress up!) We will pretend that we are gathered in a public hall in the 18th century, and we
will actually debate whether or not the colonies should declare independence.
Please note: the debate should not reflect your own personal opinions or patriotism. The debate should
reflect the historical divide that took place among colonists prior to the Revolution. You must really
consider the risks of declaring independence and recognize that this was not an easy or glamorous
All “loyalists” and “patriots” will have an opportunity to meet together during one class period to
compare their research and plan their arguments for the debate. Each side should present at least three
arguments for their cause along with facts to support their arguments. Although each side is welcome
to choose a primary debater to present their opening and closing statements, everyone in class is
expected to speak at least once. You will be graded on your overall group presentation, your individual
contribution to the debate, and your individual contribution to your group (determined by peer