A. Descriptive Characteristics

Curriculum Developer – Gary Babiuk

Inquiry Unit Big Question – Is World Peace Possible?

Student Target Population / Grade 6 - Cluster 2 and 3

Estimated Time Required: It is approximately 24 hours or about 5 weeks.

Overall Goal or Rationale: To create an inquiry unit that balances the ideas and

concept of war with thinking and acting in a peaceful manner.

B. Focusing sub-questions

My guiding questions that assist in developing the lessons.

C. Outcomes / Goals / Objectives

My goals


Manitoba curriculum Concepts.

Core Concepts


KC-003 Recognize Remembrance Day as a commemoration of Canadian participation in world conflicts.

KC-006 Identify current issues related to citizenship in Canada.

Identify, Culture, and Community

KI-020 Identify various groups and organizations that may contribute to personal identity.

KI-021 Identify various individuals from Canada’s past and present, and describe their achievements

Historical Connections

KH-036 Identify the prime ministers of Canada from 1914 to 1945 and give examples of their achievements.

KH-037 Describe changing roles for women in Canada from 1914 to 1945.                 

KH-038 Identify the prime ministers of Canada from 1945 to the present and give examples of their achievements.

Global Interdependence

KG-039 Identify major causes and events of the First World War.

KG-040 Describe Canada’s involvement in the First World War and identify its impact on Canadian individuals and communities. Include: internment of ethnocultural groups.

KG-041 Identify major causes and events of the Second World War.

KG-042 Describe Canada’s involvement in the Second World War and identify its impact on Canadian individuals and communities. Include: internment of ethnocultural groups; the Holocaust.

KG-043 Give examples of Canada’s involvement in world conflicts since 1945. Examples: Korean War, Cold War, Gulf War, Bosnia, Afghanistan, international peacekeeping...

KG-044 Give examples of global events and forces that have affected Canadians from 1945 to the present. Examples: international cooperation, relief efforts, disease, environmental changes, famine, refugee movement...

KG-045 Give examples of Canada’s participation in the United Nations and other international organizations. Examples: the Commonwealth, La Francophonie, Organization of American States...

KG-047 Give examples of Canada’s connections to other regions of the world. Examples: environmental, social, political, economic...

Power and Authority

KP-049 Describe the main features of the Canadian government. Include: parliamentary system, federal democracy.

KP-052 Identify the main responsibilities of municipal, provincial, First Nations, and federal governments in Canada.

Economic and Resources

KE-057 Give examples of the impact of technological development on life in Canada from 1914 to 1945. Examples: electricity, telecommunication,     transportation, medicine, industrialization...

KE-058 Give examples of ways in which industry and technology have changed life in Canada since 1945. Examples: urbanization, transportation,    communication, education...

KE-059 Give examples of inventions and technologies created in Canada. Examples: kayaks, snowmobiles, Canadarm, insulin, canola...


VG - 014– Appreciate the sacrifices that soldiers and other Canadians made during the World Wars (in Korean, Gulfs and Afghan

VC- 003 – Appreciate the struggles and achievements of past generations in shaping Canada

VG – 015 – Appreciate Canada’s interdependence with other regions of the world


Active Democratic Citizenship

S-100 Collaborate with others to establish and carry out group goals and responsibilities.

S-101 Use a variety of strategies to resolve conflicts peacefully and fairly. Examples: clarification, negotiation, compromise...

S-104 Negotiate constructively with others to build consensus and solve problems.

S-105 Recognize bias and discrimination and propose solutions.

Managing Information and Ideas

S-200 Select information from oral, visual, material, print, or electronic sources. Examples: maps, atlases, art, songs, artifacts, narratives, legends, biographies, historical fiction...

S-201 Organize and record information in a variety of formats and reference sources appropriately. Examples: maps, charts, outlines, concept maps...

S-202 Distinguish between primary and secondary information sources for research.

S-203 Select and use appropriate tools and technologies to accomplish tasks.

S-204 Create timelines and other visual organizers to sequence and represent historical figures, relationships, or chronological events.

Critical and Creative Thinking

S-300 Plan topics and goals for historical inquiry and research.

S-302 Draw conclusions based on research and evidence.

S-303 Evaluate personal assumptions based on new information and ideas.

S-304 Distinguish fact from opinion and interpretation.

S-305 Observe and analyze material or visual evidence for research. Examples: artifacts, photographs, works of art...

S-306 Assess the validity of information sources. Examples: purpose, context, authenticity, origin, objectivity, evidence, reliability...

S-307 Compare differing accounts of historical events.


S-400 Listen to others to understand their perspectives.

S-401 Use language that is respectful of human diversity.

S-402 Support their ideas and opinions with information or observations.

S-403 Present information and ideas orally, visually, concretely, or electronically.

S-404 Elicit and clarify questions and ideas in discussions.

S-405 Articulate their beliefs and perspectives on issues.

D. Material / Primary sources

The following are the materials that were in immediate reach and other material that I had to go looking for:

              World War I and World War II – A Visual Encyclopedia

              The Great War and its Consequences – 1914-20

              Extraordinary Correspondence from American Wars – War Letters

                            (Civil / WWI / WW II / Cold / Korean / Vietnam / Gulf / Bosnia)

              Voices of a people’s history of the United States – Howard Zinn

              Newspaper articles about War Video Games and effects on Teenagers

              Video clips - Patton / The Longest Day / Platoon / Gandhi / Marin Luther King

              PBS Series – “The Perilous Fight: Americans in World War II”

                            (need to tape it)

              A selection of novels about war

                            WWI – Regeneration / All Quiet on the Western Front

                            WW II – Bridge at San Luis Ray / Hiroshima / summer of My German Solider / Run Boy Run / The Snow Goose, by Paul Gallico

                                          Diary of Ann Frank

                            Middle East Conflicts - Under the Persimmon Tree, and Shabanu: Daughter of the Wind by Suzanne Fisher Staples

                            The Snow Goose, by Paul Gallico

                            The Devil's Arithmetic

                            The Island on Bird Street

                            Good Night, Mr. Tom

                            So Far From the Bamboo Grove

                            Journey to Topaz

                            The Big Book for Peace (edited by Ann Durrell and Marilyn Sachs)

                            I Can Make a Difference: A Treasure to Inspire Our Children (edited by Marian Wright Edelman)

                            Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes

                            Other books from Grade 6 Resource List

           Very short essays by Thich Nhat Hahn- Zen Buddhist philosopher. Peace Is Every Step: The Path of Mindfulness in Everyday Life.

           A selection of Movies and Video Games (student choice but would provide a starting list)

           Internet Sites:

           General Site for all wars, very comprehensive - http://www.rootsweb.com/~canmil/ww1/index.html

           A website from Canadian Veteran Affairs < http://www.vacacc.gc.ca/general/sub.cfm?source=history/firstwar/1diary>

                            WW I    < http://www.worldwar1.com/>

                                          < http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/war/wwone/index.shtml>

                                          < http://www.teacheroz.com/wwi.htm>

                            WW II   < http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/war/wwtwo/>


                                          < http://canadaonline.about.com/od/canadaww2/ig/Canadian Posters-World-War-II/index.htm>

                                          < http://www.warmuseum.ca/cwm/newspapers/intro_e.html>

                            Korean War < http://www.korean-war.com/>



                            Gulf War - < http://archives.cbc.ca/IDD-1-71593/conflict_war/gulf_war/>

                                              < http://www.historyguy.com/GulfWar.html>

                            Peace - < http://www.haguepeace.org/>

                                          < http://www.global-ed.org/e4p/resource.htm>

                                          < http://www.ppu.org.uk/learn/early/poppy1_early_years.html>

                                          < http://cyberschoolbus.un.org/>

                                          < http://www.ppu.org.uk/poppy/white_index.html>

                                          < http://www.ppu.org.uk/learn/infodocs/poopy_hist1.htm




E. Assessment Plan

- Students will keep a Personal Journal (I will create one for students out of some cut paper with blank cover to be used for an art representation). I will allow for personal reflection and also include some guiding questions to help facilitate reflection.

Example of some questions:

- What was your first reaction to our discussion of war?

- Have you thought about war before? If so, why? If not, why do you think it has not been part of your thinking?

- Can you remember the first time you thought of war? Describe it?

- What was the last thing you saw on any media that made you think of war? How did you feel, think, or react?

- Have you ever thought of peace? In what context?

- Do you think more about war or peace? Why?

- I would add questions as they developed over the unit

- Culminating Activity – Will include a personal piece of visual art on the cover of their journal that represents the student’s response to the big question “Is World Peace Possible?” The last entry in the journal will be a written explanation of the art. It will be presented to class on the final day and displayed in classroom or in a display case in the school. (I would also allow students to choose to write a poem or make a sculpture, etc. if they felt that it was more to their liking). See rubric at the end of Unit Plan.

- Group Retrieval Chart Poster on Specific Wars– Students will complete their research using the retrieval chart and present to class and post it for others to use as reference. See example retrieval Chart at end of Unit Plan.

- Group preparation for Class Debate

- Movie or Video Game review and presentation

- Book review poster and presentation

- Group Jigsaw Newspaper account and analysis

- Group Jigsaw War letter summary and analysis

Assessment Summary for the “Big Question Unit”

                 Is World Peace Possible?

Title of Assignment

Percent of Grade

Due Date

Instructions or Notes

Final Grade

Personal Journal


Every day

Personal piece of visual art


Final Day

Expert Group Retrieval Chart Poster


Lesson 3

Home Group Poster on Effects of War


Lesson 4

War letter and Newspaper article summary and analysis

10 each

for a

total of


Lesson 5

Movie / Video War Game review and presentation



Lesson 5

Book Review and Presentation


Lesson 5

Peace Activity Group Lesson Plan and Poster


Lesson 6

Debate preparation


Lesson 8



F. Lesson Plans

Lesson 1 – Opener (1 hour)


1) Get students to brainstorm what they think of when they hear the word war or think of the concept of war? Write these down on a piece of flip chart paper. Don’t just stop at a few; give students some wait time in order to a complete list. Then do the same thing with the word and concept of peace.


2) Show students a red poppy, ask them if they know what it is, its significance, and its history. Fill in any missing details. Then show them a white poppy. Ask them what it means, etc. Read the news account of the controversy. Ask them why there is one? Write down some of the ideas presented.

3) Divide into small groups and present a selection of pictures of war. Have students look at them and again write down some thoughts and feelings about war. Have groups share with the class. Then take away the pictures and give another set of pictures of normal life (peace) and again ask groups to discuss and write down ideas, comments. Again share with class.

4) Have students compare their first brainstormed list (on poster paper) with the ideas they developed after they viewed the collection of photos. Then have class speculate why the lists are the same or different than each other. Also discuss whether war is an important topic or concept to discuss and understand.


5) Now introduce the Big Question – “Is World Peace Possible?” and outline the next unit.

6) Hand out journal booklet and have students write in their journals for 5 minutes non-stop and without interruption. They should record their definition of war and peace. This will become the pattern for the end of each class period. Remind them that they are to leave the front cover blank for now, as it will be used in the culminating activity.


Lesson 2 - Definition of War (1 hour)

1) Handout two articles and poems (Flanders Fields) that describe and/or define the terms war and peace? Also play a few songs (handout the lyrics) about war/peace (Lennon’s “Give Peace a Chance” and “Peace Train” and songs from WWI, One Tin Soldier). Have students read them and then in their home groups (I would have divided them before they came to class and put a mixture of personalities in each group) have them come up with their definition. Each group will present their definition (write on a large piece of paper) and post in classroom.

2) Conclude with a whole class discussion of the concept of war and peace.

3) Hand out the movie/video game and book assignment. Students will choose a book and movie/video game from a list that you create. (Students can pick their own but must get approval from the teacher). Their assignment is to read and view and develop a one-page summary of each using the following format. This one pager will be presented in Lesson 5.

4) The poster will include the following:

Lesson 3  - Jigsaw Research using Retrieval Chart (3 hours)

Lesson 4 - Presentation of Results and discussion (4 hours)


Lesson 5 - Letters and Newspaper results presentation / Movie posters (4 hours)

Lesson 6- Exploring Critical Thinking and Non-Violence (5 hours)

Lesson 7 - Work Day (2 hours)

Lesson 8  - Work Day (2 hours)

Lesson 9  - Class Presentation and Display of Art – Culminating Activity (3 hours)

***I also would prepare mini-lectures (15 minutes) including handout summary notes. Or get students to research these and make the presentation. These mini-lectures would help add more information about specific historical events and current events. The following could be some of the topics:

***I would also set up a clothes line that I would use as a time line and as we completed reports or found information we could add the events to the time line with clothes pegs.

Retrieval Chart

For Cause and Effect of War

Name of War:

Name of Reference

and from whose point of view?

Cause of the war

Effects of the War

From four points of view Soldiers / civilians / folks at home / government

Classroom Textbook

Second Resource

Third resource


Final Personal War Art and Explanation

The following are the characteristics of a quality final project. The assignment will

Superior              Excellent           Good                   Acceptable        Poor (maybe redo)

25                        23                        20                        17                        15