The Persian Gulf War
Content Area(s): Social Studies
Grades: 4-6, 6-8
- Introduce the Topic: one 1-hour class period (two, if students need reading time)
- Classroom Activity: small groups; one 45-minute class period
- Project: 2-3 weeks
- Wrap-Up: one 45-minute class period
- FreedomFlix eBook: The Persian Gulf War
- Computers with Internet access
- Projector or whiteboard
- Watch a video about the Persian Gulf War.
- Learn key vocabulary.
- Build knowledge by completing a small-group activity based on the eBook.
- Complete a project by writing questions and participating in a classroom quiz show on the Persian Gulf War.
- Discuss and answer guiding questions.
I. Introduce the Topic
Tell students that they will be learning about the Persian Gulf War. Explain that they will first watch a video about the war. They will also preview vocabulary before reading the FreedomFlix eBook.
Watch the Video
Show the video The Persian Gulf War. When finished, ask students to review the video in their own words. Discuss with students what they already know about the Persian Gulf War. Then have students ask questions about the topic.
Point out the list of vocabulary words and their definitions located on page 67. Pronounce each word; then have students read them. Remind students to decode unknown words using what they already know about word structure, syllables, and affixes. Help them with the pronunciation of the word desalination (dee-say-lih-NAY-shuhn).
Have students read and discuss each definition with a partner. Ask students to write sentences using the words; write a short passage using the words; or create an illustrated glossary.
Introduce Guiding Questions
Show students the guiding questions:
- Why was the Persian Gulf War fought?
- What was the outcome of the Persian Gulf War?
- What might instability in the region mean for the future?
Write the questions on the board or show students how to access them from the left-hand side of the FreedomFlix screen by clicking on What Do You Think? Tell students that they will review the guiding questions as a class, after their assignments are completed.
Read the eBook
Ask students to read The Persian Gulf War on their own. Explain that when they are finished they will work together to complete an activity that will help them remember the events of the Persian Gulf War.
II. Classroom Activity
Each small group will focus on a different chapter. Have groups take notes on the key events from their chapter.
When the groups are finished, allow time for each group to briefly share information with the class about the key events for their chapter.
III. Assign Project: Operation Quiz Show
Students will learn more about the Persian Gulf War by hosting a quiz show.
Have small groups formed during the classroom activity continue to work together using the key events they wrote down from their chapter. Instead of sharing information, have students rework their key events into questions for a television game or quiz show.
Each group should write as many questions as they can. Question types may vary; see examples below. Answers should be written as well. Page numbers should be cited, telling where in the eBook the information is found. When finished, groups should exchange questions for fact checking online.
After questions are written and reviewed, students can divide into two teams. Begin asking questions to one of the teams. When this team provides an incorrect response or cannot answer a question, begin to address questions to the opposing team. Continue asking questions, going from one team to the other, until all questions have been answered. The team that answers the most questions correctly is the winner.
- (open response) What's the difference between the Persian Gulf War and the Iraq War? between Operation Desert Shield and Operation Desert Storm?
- (true or false) True or false: With money from the oil industry, Saddam was able to pay back money he borrowed for military and weapons needed for the Iraq-Iran War. (false)
- (short answer) Long or short? The Persian Gulf War was a _____ war. (short)
Ask Students to:
- Write quiz-show questions.
- Exchange questions with another group for fact checking.
- Join a team and answer questions during a classroom quiz show.
- Choose as winners the team that answers the most questions correctly.
- Evaluate questions and the quiz show.
After the game show, display questions and answers in the classroom, or provide a link online so students can access them. Determine which questions were best written, and why. Discuss any discrepancies. Make sure that students understand the differences between the Persian Gulf War and the Iraq War that began in 2003.
Reintroduce the Guiding Questions
Use the guiding questions to facilitate a classroom discussion on the Persian Gulf War. Make sure students understand the time period and issues faced during the war.
You may direct students to take the Show What You Know quiz, which they can access from the left-hand side of the FreedomFlix screen. You may also assign the writing prompts on this topic, which can be found in the Educator Resources section along with rubrics.