WEBQUEST: To Kill a Mockingbird The purpose of this activity is for

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WEBQUEST: To Kill a Mockingbird
The purpose of this activity is for you to use the Internet to find and review the historical backdrop
of To Kill a Mockingbird. The historical context will provide you with a deeper understanding of
the significance of the novel. A panel discussion will follow this activity. In the discussion you
will be will be assessed on your preparedness and verbal participation in the discussion, as they go
hand-in-hand, so complete this activity and be prepared to share what you know and have learned.
The Great Depression & 1930s America
1. Click on http://www.english.uiuc.edu/maps/depression/photoessay.htm and explore the
pictures taken from the 1930s Depression Era.
Picture two’s caption comments, “Not only did bank failures wipe out people's
savings, they also undermined the ideology of thrift.” What does this mean?
How do you think this event affected the post depression era generations?
What influence do you think this attitude may have had on the current economic
situation (the downturn in the market, bankruptcies, foreclosures, high credit card
balances and/or reduced lending availability?
Considering the content and captions of pictures, what contribution did the climate
change of the 1930s make to the U.S.’s already troubled times?
In what ways did the economic and environmental events of the 1920s and 1930s
impact the social events of the 1930s and 1940s?
What historical figure, do you feel, influenced or could have influenced this period
and how?
2. Explore the following links and print out two articles that most interest you. Read and
Highlight the important aspects of each article and write notes in the margin. Attach the
highlighted and annotated articles to this cover sheet.
a. http://www.english.uiuc.edu/maps/depression/about.htm
This site is about the Great Depression that impacted the global community.
b. http://www.english.uiuc.edu/maps/depression/overview.htm
This site is about the Depression in the United States during the 1930s.
c. http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/dustbowl/peopleevents/pandeAMEX05.html
This site discusses The Great Depression.
d. http://library.thinkquest.org/12111/mculley.html
This site discusses what it was like to grow up black in the 1930s.
What historical figure, do you feel, influenced or could have influenced this period and how?
3. Click on the following link: http://www.questia.com/PM.qst?a=o&d=59442019 and then
Click on the Table of Contents links (located to the left of the screen) to find out more about life
in the 1930s. Write a brief summary (1or 2 sentences each) about five different facts you
learned about life in the 1930s.
i. ____________________________________________________________
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ii. ____________________________________________________________
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iii. ____________________________________________________________
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iv. ____________________________________________________________
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v. ____________________________________________________________
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What historical figure, do you feel, influenced or could have influenced this period and how?
Jim Crow Laws
1. Click on http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/USAjimcrow.htm
Read the information on this page and write a brief summary (3-5 sentences) of what you
learned.
2. Click on the various links listed below. Print article a and one other choice that interests
you. Read, Highlight, and annotate the important aspects of each article. Attach the
highlighted articles to this cover sheet.
a. http://afroamhistory.about.com/library/weekly/aa010201a.htm
This site provides a brief history of the Jim Crow laws.
b. http://academic.udayton.edu/race/02rights/jcrow02.htm
This site provides examples of Jim Crow laws.
c. http://www.ferris.edu/news/jimcrow/what.htm
This site answers the question: What was Jim Crow?
What historical figure, do you feel, influenced or could have influenced this period and how?
The Scottsboro Incident
1. The setting for the Scottsboro case was the rural American South in the 1930s, when whites
feared racial fraternization as much as blacks feared the mobs that enforced segregation. The
defendants in the case were known as the Scottsboro Boys—a label that reflected their
youth, but even more, in that place and at that time, an epithet used to imply racial
inferiority. Click on the following links, read about the trial, and summarize what you
learned from each link.
a. http://www.trivia-library.com/b/where-are-they-now-the-scottsboro-boys-part-1.htm
This site provides a Brief synopsis of the Scottsboro incident.
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b. http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/scottsboro/sfeature/sf_lynching.html This site
focuses on issues, such as the lynching in Alabama, that took place after the trial.
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What historical figure, do you feel, influenced or could have influenced this period and how?
Final Assignment:
Type a one-page synopsis reflecting upon what you have learned about 1930s America, Jim Crow
Laws, and the Scottsboro Trial. Be sure to adhere to MLA format.
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What surprised you?
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What made you angry?
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What do you think life would have been like for a small town, teenage, Caucasian girl or
boy during this period? Would they have been aware of the political and socio-economic
issues of the day?
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How would life have been different for a teenage, African American girl or boy during
this period? What concerns would they have had?
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How have these events shaped the world today? If you could go back and make one
change to the history that you have investigated in this assignment, whose shoes would you
step into and what would you do?
Due: 13 January 2009
Panel Discussion conducted in class: 13 January 2009
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