Maryland Voluntary State Curriculum (vsc)



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No Guns, Just Flour”: The Berlin Airlift
High School United States History
Duration: 2 class periods

Maryland Voluntary State Curriculum (VSC):


United States History

5.4.1.a Describe the response of the United States to communist expansion in Europe, including the Truman Doctrine, the Marshall Plan, the Berlin Airlift (1948), and the formation of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization



Government

2.1.B.1.d Evaluate how international issues and interests, such as terrorism, regionalism and human rights affect federal government policy

2.1.B.1.e Examine how foreign aid affects the United States relationships with other countries

2.1.B.1.f Evaluate the role of United States government in promoting the spread of democracy


Objectives:

  • Students will be able to describe the tensions between the United States and the Soviet Union over the political, economic, and social reconstruction of Germany.

  • Students will be able to analyze the response of the United States to the Soviet blockade of West Berlin.

  • Students will be able to analyze the costs and benefits of the Berlin Airlift.


Vocabulary/Concepts:

Berlin Airlift

Berlin Blockade

Cold War
Materials:



Teacher

Teacher Resource Sheet #1, “The Candy Bomber”

Teacher Resource Sheet #2. “Milk…New Weapon of Democracy”

Teacher Resource Sheet #3, “Costs and Benefits of the Berlin Airlift”


Student

Student Resource Sheet #1, “Reporter’s Notes: The Berlin Airlift”

Student Resource Sheet #2, “Class Notes: The Berlin Airlift”

Student Resource Sheet #3, “Part One: The Berlin Airlift”

Student Resource Sheet #4, “Part Two: The Berlin Airlift”

Student Resource Sheet #5, “Part Three: The Berlin Airlift”

Student Resource Sheet #6, “Part Four: The Berlin Airlift”

Student Resource Sheet #7, “Part Five: The Berlin Airlift”

Student Resource Sheet #8, “Part Six: The Berlin Airlift”

Resources:

Botting, D. (1985). From the Ruins of the Reich: Germany 1945-1949. New York: New American Library.
http://www.spiritoffreedom.org/airlift.html

Berlin Airlift Historical Foundation


http://www.trumanlibrary.org/whistlestop/BERLIN_A/PHOTO_CO.HTM

Truman Library Website


Lesson Development:

  1. Motivation: Display Teacher Resource Sheet #1, “The Candy Bomber.” Tell students that the cartoon is portraying events that actually occurred in Berlin, Germany in 1948. Ask: What do you know about Berlin, Germany in 1948?

(After World War II, Berlin was in the Eastern, Soviet controlled section of a divided Germany) Tell students that you are going to read to them the true story of the Candy bomber.


  1. Read Mercedes and the Chocolate Pilot by Margot Theis Raven. Start with the page that says Berlin 1948.




  1. After reading, ask:

What were conditions like in Berlin in 1948?

What was the significance of the actions of the Chocolate Pilot to the children of Berlin?




  1. Go back to the beginning pages of Mercedes and the Chocolate Pilot, those that begin with the quote by Harry Truman. Read the pages to the class. Tell students that they are going to learn about the events that led to and the consequences of the Berlin Airlift.




  1. Divide the class into six groups. Assign each group one of the readings (Student Resource Sheets #3-8). Distribute Student Resource Sheet #1, “Reporter’s Notes: The Berlin Airlift.” Individual students should read their assigned reading and complete the left hand column of Student Resource Sheet #1. As a group, students should discuss their findings and come to a consensus on the “most important” facts in the right hand column of Student Resource Sheet #1.




  1. Groups should report their findings to the class. As each group reports, remaining students should take notes on the left hand side of Student Resource Sheet #2, “Class Notes: The Berlin Airlift.”




  1. After all groups have reported out, have the class come to consensus on the “most important” facts from all of the group reports.




  1. Show students Teacher Resource Sheet #3, “Milk…New Weapon of Democracy.”

Ask: What is this document? What is it saying? Discuss.


  1. Display Teacher Resource Sheet #3, “Costs and Benefits of the Berlin Airlift.” Complete as a class.




  1. Assessment: Have students respond to the following prompt.

Your local newspaper is publishing a special edition commemorating the Berlin Airlift. You have been asked to write an article discussing the airlift as seen through the eyes of the young citizens of Berlin. This article should address the following:



    • The political, economic, and social tensions between the United States and the Soviet Union over Berlin

    • The United States response to the Berlin Blockade

    • The costs and benefits of the Berlin Airlift.

Teacher Resource Sheet #1

The Candy Bomber

http://www.trumanlibrary.org/whistlestop/BERLIN_A/CARTOO_5.HTM

Teacher Resource Sheet #2

Milk…New Weapon of Democracy

http://www.spiritoffreedom.org/airlift.html

Teacher Resource Sheet #3




Costs and Benefits of the Berlin Airlift






Costs




Benefits








Student Resource Sheet #1




Reporter’s Notes: The Berlin Airlift




WHO (is involved or affected)

Most Important WHO


WHAT (happened)


Most Important WHAT

WHERE (did it happen)


Most Important WHERE

WHEN (did it happen)


Most Important WHEN

HOW (did they do it or did others respond)


Most Important HOW

WHY (did they do this, react this way)


Most Important WHY

SO WHAT? (Why is this event important?)


Most Important SO WHAT?

Student Resource Sheet #2




Class Notes: The Berlin Airlift




WHO (is involved or affected)

Most Important WHO


WHAT (happened)


Most Important WHAT

WHERE (did it happen)


Most Important WHERE

WHEN (did it happen)


Most Important WHEN

HOW (did they do it or did others respond)


Most Important HOW

WHY (did they do this, react this way)


Most Important WHY

SO WHAT? (Why is this event important?)



Most Important SO WHAT?

Student Resource Sheet #3


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