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This activity includes the social structure of the United States during the War in Vietnam. Specifically, this activity focuses on how pop music influenced culture in the war effort at home and abroad. This is a part of standard 7.7 for HS United States History. Driving Q: Vietnam was a time in America with great social unrest among youth, adults, the government, and everyone in between. With the rising conflicts of the time, music became a prominent aspect of expression. Protest songs crowded the Billboard charts and the record stores. What effect did pop music have on the Vietnam War? - This question causes students to go on an in depth journey to the past to discover music, history, and the effect it had on America. This is relevant because it focuses on social unrest in Vietnam Era America which tackles standard 7.7. This question is entirely based on the amount of research and the side that the students take on the topic, therefore the students could all have different answers. As a teacher I always like to go "full circle" with what we learned in class for the day. So in terms of the driving question, I would ask at the beginning of class What effect did pop music have on the Vietnam War? and then reiterate the question at the end of class. This allows the students to have the question in mind while we go through the whole lesson, so by the end they have complete and well developed thoughts on the topic at hand. Grabber: I would open with Robin Williams yelling “GOOOOOOD MORNING VIETNAM!” Then I would play a quick video of samples capturing the music made during Vietnam War. This grabber hooks the learner because of the relationship most stuents aleady have with Robin Williams as an actor and with the music being played. The grabber conjures up a natural engagement from the students by using a high emotion situation with the booming voice of Robin Williams and the visual and audible factors in the video that draw in the audience. This is authentic and relevant because the students will often pay more attention to a lesson if they can connect with the task. The clip from the movie revolves around the whole topic of music during Vietnam because Robin Williams' character portrays a radio DJ stationed in Vietnam during the war. The videos and sounds will be straight from the vietnam era making them authentic. The Grabber's intention is to pull the students into the lesson, and with video, comedy, music, and emotion, the students will be excited and engaged for the activity. 
U.S. History, Sociology
High School
Grade 10, Grade 11, Grade 12
Material Type:
Lesson Plan
Date Added:
Creative Commons Attribution Creative Commons Attribution
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