Lesson Plan

Peak Immigration Years

Text and political cartoons in the Peak Immigration Years Exhibit in the Ellis Island Immigration Museum.

Political cartoons from the past and present can encourage critical thinking

NPS Photo

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Grade Level:
Eighth Grade-Twelfth Grade
Subject:
History, Immigration, Social Studies
Duration:
25-30 minutes
Group Size:
Up to 36
Setting:
in the park

Overview

Use visually-engaging primary documents to help students contemplate and discuss contemporary issues related to immigration (particularly, in the Closing the Doors room of the Peak Immigration Years exhibit). In addition, this program should encourage critical thinking about published images and words that promote a particular point of view.

Objective(s)

By the end of the activity, students will be able to:

  • Explore how cartoonists use political cartoons to influence public opinion.
  • Evaluate the cartoonist point of view. 
  • Consider different perspectives on the same issue through dialogue and discussion.
  • Participate in a dialogue about their own ideas regarding these issues.

Materials

Images from the Peak Immigration Years exhibit
Images from page 3 of the downloadable PDF version 
Pen
Paper

Procedure

Vocabulary

immigration
political cartoon