United States History Through the Lens of Political Conventions

Allison Baker, US History, Vance High School

Final Unit (PDF)

Implementing Common Core Standards

200 Word Synopsis

This curriculum unit looks at pivotal events in United States History to see how these events affected political conventions, candidate selection and/or the party platform.  The unit begins with students gaining a brief understanding of political conventions and their role in selecting the candidate for president.  We will also discuss political party platforms and the reason they are developed.  Students will learn how these platforms are created and approved at the conventions.  After learning about a key historical event, students will begin their search into the corresponding political convention.  A teacher created Web Quest will guide them to specific websites that will provide them with accurate information concerning the political convention, news stories about the convention, and the party’s approved platform.  Students will compile this information into a presentation for the entire class.  They will be asked to address the following question within their presentation: “How did history affect the choices made at their given convention?”  They will be guided to highlight the connection between the historical event and the changing political climate for their given year(s).