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Revolutionary War Debate

Main Core Tie

Social Studies - 5th Grade
Standard 2 Objective 2


Lynda Davis
Joan Kyriopoulos
JoAnna Sorensen


Students will use debate as a tool for discussing the Revolutionary War.

Instructional Procedures

Before the Debate:

1. Divide the class into two debate teams. Determine who will be on each team by making an equal number of "P" for patriots" and "L" for loyalists letters on paper squares for a drawing.

2. Arrange the room into two rows of desks facing each other. The Loyalists and Patriots should be facing each other.

3. (3-4 days before the debate) Have the students look up additional information about the Revolutionary War from various resources. Each team member should write down some facts to address during the debate. Both teams should gather to discuss strategies, to make summary statements, and to practice before the debate.

During the Debate:

1. Begin the debate. Allow the students to debate their views about war, allegiance to country, freedom, taxes, etc. Go back and forth from team to team and encourage the students to voice facts.

2. Encourage both teams to make rebuttal remarks and to come up with original ideas that have not yet been discussed in the debate.

3. Allow the debate to continue until no new information is given.

4. Before ending the debate, encourage students to become more powerful in making stronger comments for their teams and move along at a quicker, more exciting pace.

5. Finally, ask for a summary statement from each team.

After the Debate:

The teacher will have to help with this. Deduct points for wrong information, rude remarks, etc. The class winners will be the team with the most points.

Assessment Plan

After the debate, summarize the main ideas of the Revolutionary War. Ask questions and discuss how the children felt about being on different sides with opposing views. Discuss empathy and other social concerns.

Created: 07/28/2008
Updated: 02/04/2018