The World I Memorial: A Monument to the Redefining of a National Character

HomeEducationLandmark LessonThe World I Memorial: A Monument to the Redefining of a National Character

The World I Memorial: A Monument to the Redefining of a National Character

This lesson is designed to compare and contrast important social, cultural and political themes in the post-World War I decade of the 1920’s. The main learning objective is to understand how the World War I monument in Kansas City, Mo, ,now known as the National World War I Museum and Memorial, came to represent the progressive ideology of the early 20th century and reflect the post -ar attitudes of the nation at large.

Big Ideas: Public monuments commonly attempt to reflect the past while projecting an ideology into the future. The World War I Memorial was a bridge between the elements of the city beautiful movement, common to the Progressive Era, and the post World War I search for national identity.

Location

Kansas City , MO

Type of Landmark

Monument or memorial

Topics

20th century
Industry
World War I
Politics

Learning Objectives

  • Understand the culturally relevant issues that impact and reflect the creation of a national monument.

Suggested Instructional Procedures

1. Previous to this lesson, students will have been made familiar with the broad themes of progressivism, nationalism, internationalism and isolationism.

2.  At the beginning of class,the teacher will remind students that the Progressive movement  heavily affected American life and government through various reform movements.  As a result, there was a strong cultural emphasis on modernity and social evolution.

3. The teacher will then highlight the post-World War I theme of disillusionment as a result of the Great War and its results and the American public reaction to world involvement.

4. Students will then be given a brief history of the World War I Memorial, use   This synopsis will include key fundraisers, architectural history and significant dignitaries that attended the dedication ceremonies.

5. Following this introductory information, students will divide into four groups to compare and discuss their answers to the questions below.

6. After giving students 15 minutes to discuss their findings and responses, each group will prepare an oral presentation referencing their question for the class.

Each group will be given one question and asked to present their answers to the class.

GROUP 1 – What artistic or structural elements of the World War I Memorial show evidence of influence from the ideas of Progressivism?

GROUP 2- What artistic or structural elements of the World War I Memorial show evidence of influence from the ideas of Nationalism?

GROUP 3 - What artistic or structural elements of the World War I Memorial show evidence of influence from the ideas of Internationalism?

GROUP 4 - What artistic or structural elements of the World War I Memorial show evidence of influence from the ideas of Isolationism?

7. Students will come to the front of the class and present their analysis and responses to the class and give the other students opportunities to ask questions, agree or challenge them regarding their conclusions.

 

End of Lesson Assessment

Students will be graded based on their responses to the prompt and fellow students questions.

Rubric:

  1.  Clarity of expression and articulation of the theme relevant to their assigned   question (25%)
  2.  Accuracy of responses based on the documents (25%)
  3.  Clarity in oral expression during presentation (25%)
  4.  Ability to incorporate all members of their group into the research, discussion and presentation (25%)