Other Activities

Additional Activity Ideas

Debate Critique

Use the following phrases to make signs for your students. In any kind of debating activity or class discussion, ask the students to hold up his/her sign whenever one of their classmates commits one of these no-nos for historians:

Over generalization Unexamined nostalgia Presentism

Forest History Society

Evidence deficit Utopian standards Romanticization Binary categorization Teleology

“…In the aftermath of 1910, Chief Graves staked the agency’s continued existence on the belief that it could in fact defeat fire. Toward that end, Graves embraced a cooperative approach with state and private associations to fight fire…and soon launched a fire protection campaign that involved removing fire from the landscape…The campaign, which would lead to the creation of Smokey Bear, would last for more than half a century and completely change forest ecology throughout the country during its lifetime..Now the folly of fighting backcountry fires is widely accepted and the role of fire in maintaining forest health is understood. The impact of the campaign is the most important legacy of the 1910 Fires and the Big Blowup—and it is a legacy that we are still coping with today.”

Examine the ecosystem of a forest and the role that fire plays in that ecosystem.


Service Learning

Find ways to help in your community. Examine the policies and layout of your town or borough and think of ways to make the water cleaner or spruce up a public space.

Learning the National Parks

Ask individual students to choose one of the national parks or forests existing today, anywhere in the national system. Have students prepare a brochure and a fact sheet for that park. The fact sheet should include when the park was created, its location, major features and any problems, controversies, etc. Ask students to predict what might have happened to the land if it hadn’t been designated as a conservation site. In the classroom have students locate the park they chose on a large map of the US with pushpins, flags or other devices. They might also outline the area covered by their various parks. Design a display of the student brochures.

Hey, Map!

As President, TR funded 21 reclamation projects, and established 150 national forests, 51 bird preserves, 4 game preserves, 5 national parks, and 18 national monuments. In order to give students a visual tool illustrating TR’s achievements in conservation, provide each student with a map of the US (including Alaska, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico). Using the map key (Appendix F), have each student fill in the states with letters representing lands/projects set aside by TR.

Bill Moyer’s Journal

Examines Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring http://www.pbs.org/moyers/journal/educators/rachelcarson.html

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