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The Great Depression

Chapter 21


  1. Create a word web about Herbert Hoover’s economic policies.

  2. Explain the concept of buying on margin.

  3. Write a play about a family trying to cope during the Great Depression.

  4. Write a poem about the soup kitchens of the Great Depression.

  5. Complete a descriptive writing about life in the Dust Bowl region.

  6. Evaluate the impact the Great Depression had on America.


  1. Chart America’s unemployment rate from 1929 to 1942.

  2. Graph the number of bank failures between 1929 and 1932.

  3. Determine how and why a major African American migration occurred during the Great Depression.

  4. Compare and contrast the Great Depression with the Panic of 1837.

  5. Analyze and organize election data of 1932.

  6. Sequence the major events of the Great Depression on a time line, starting with the Stock Market crash.

  7. Calculate the probability of becoming unemployed during the Great Depression.

  8. Describe the impact of the Hawley Smoot Tariff during the Great Depression.

  9. Determine the number of farm foreclosures during the Great Depression.


  1. Watch the film The Grapes of Wrath and write a short review.

  2. Create a map illustrating the Dust Bowl

  3. Draw a scene of the Stock Market crash

  4. Create a political cartoon about Herbert Hoover’s economic policies.

  5. Create a slogan about how the Great Depression affected Americans.

  6. Examine and post in the classroom pictures of clothing worn in the 1930’s


  1. Interpret the words to the song “Brother Can You Spare a Dime?”

  2. Research the effect the Great Depression had on a famous American musician.

  3. Listen and analyze the music of Glenn Miller or Woodie Guthrie.

  4. Create a collage of musical composers from the Great Depression era.

  5. Write a song about the Great Depression.

  6. Change the words to a popular song today and make it about the Great Depression.


  1. Perform a skit about the Stock Market Crash.

  2. Put together a typical meal eaten during the Great Depression.

  3. Act out the role of a farming family evicted from their farm in the Midwest.

  4. Act out the role of a bank customer in line demanding his or her savings.

  5. Make a video about life during the Great Depression

  6. Role-play Franklin Roosevelt in the 1932 campaign.

  7. Act out the role of a Hollywood star during the 1930’s.


  1. Determine the ecological causes of the American Dust Bowl.

  2. Record changes in rainfall levels in the Midwest in the early 1930’s that contributed to the Dust Bowl.

  3. Categorize the materials used to build shanty towns.

  4. How did the Great Depression affect America’s livestock supply?

  5. Record changes in crop production from 1929 to1932.

  6. Create a log of several laws that dealt with pollution or toxic waste during the Great Depression.

  7. Determine the impact the boll weevil had on the nation’s cotton crop during the 1920’s.


  1. Share with others your ideas on why the Great Depression lasted so long.

  2. Write a collaborative paper on the causes of the Great Depression.

  3. Do a team interview about the differences between Herbert Hoover and Franklin Roosevelt.

  4. Do a team presentation on the conditions in the Dust Bowl.


  1. Make an action plan that would have prevented banks from closing.

  2. Express your opinion on Herbert Hoover’s treatment of the Bonus Army.

  3. Defend the position by Herbert Hoover to allow private charities to take care of the nation.

  4. Relate the devastation from the Dust Bowl to the devastation from hurricanes in 2005.

  5. Take a stance to elect Franklin Roosevelt in 1932.

  6. Write a personal poem about life during the Great Depression.

  7. Critique any movie or book about the Great Depression.

  8. Respond to the hypothetical dilemma of another Great Depression.

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