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Fill-in worksheets, crossword puzzles, and a "big picture" test covering Episode 1 of The Eighties -- a complete teaching solution to using this wonderful series in your history class!
The Eighties is an eight-part documentary series produced by CNN. Covering the entire decade in detail, the series is highly entertaining as well as informative as it addresses in detail the main elements that made the 1980s such a key decade in modern American history.
Episode 1, "Raised on Television, Part 1," analyzes how television came to occupy a central role in American cultural life during this decade. It covers the rise of sports networks such as ESPN, youth-oriented programming such as MTV, and the dominance of hour-long dramas and half-hour sitcoms during this decade. In particular it develops ideas about how television programming grew hugely in complexity and sophistication during this decade, laying the groundwork for today's entertainment landscape.
What this The Eighties Activity Pack Contains
These Episode 1 The Eighties worksheets contain the following materials:
Viewing Worksheet -- Several variants to meet your needs:
• Fill-in worksheet: large format so students have plenty of room to write
• Fill-in worksheet: condensed format to save on paper & copying time
• Time-stamped versions of both of the above in case teachers want students to use time-stamps to help them as they complete their work
• Answer key for the cloze worksheet
Crossword Puzzle Reviews -- For Differentiated Learning:
• Basic level crossword puzzle
• Advanced level crossword puzzle
• Solution grids for both crossword puzzles
• Vocabulary / study list for both crossword puzzles
Summary Test or Quiz:
• True/False Test on the episode, focusing just on the big picture ideas
• Annotated answer key for True/False Test
About these The Eighties Cloze Worksheets
The Eighties fill-in worksheets are designed to encourage students to pay close attention to the video as it plays. The during-viewing worksheets consist of fill-in problems in order to largely eliminate the problem of students guessing. In addition, because the cloze items focus on key ideas and important details, they have the added benefit of helping students to zero in on items that matter – exactly the content they should be mastering as they watch an episode.
Each fill-in worksheet contains enough problems to keep students continuously on task throughout the viewing of an episode, but the cloze items are appropriately spaced out so that the vast majority of students should be able to keep up as they watch. Students with learning challenges, however, may feel that the pace is too brisk. In that case, teachers can simply assign some students to do the odd problems and others the evens, a strategy that can also help to discourage students from copying from classmates instead of paying attention as they should.
Each Episode 1 fill-in worksheet has 26 problems.
About these The Eighties Crossword Puzzle Worksheets
In addition to the cloze activity, this The Eighties worksheet pack contains two different crossword puzzles that can be used as an alternate worksheet, as follow-up homework to the day’s viewing, or even as a quiz or test on the episode. There are two crossword puzzles included so that teachers can easily differentiate for their students, providing more or less challenging work as they see fit.
• Crossword Puzzle A (Advanced Level) presents students with clues and terms that cover all the main ideas in the episode as well as some challenging details about the topic under study.
• Crossword Puzzle B (Basic Level) is a stripped down version of the advanced puzzle, focusing on just the main ideas students should definitely have mastered.
Sample Lesson Plan for The Eighties Worksheets
Since two crossword puzzles are provided, one great option for teachers is to have students complete the advanced puzzle in class as a follow-up to viewing, then use the basic level puzzle as a graded test on the material.
A good way to proceed with this is to go over the advanced puzzle answers in class, urging all students to fill-in/correct the items they missed so they have a complete study sheet. I tell my students to be sure and study because there will be a test on the items the next day. Then I use the basic level crossword as the actual test, since it’s the puzzle that sticks to “need to know” items instead of also including “nice to know” facts.
The above lesson plan could include using the cloze worksheet during viewing, or students could be told to take notes while they watch, and then be permitted to use their notes to help them complete the advanced level puzzle in class prior to tackling the basic level puzzle from memory alone.
Alternately, teachers can use the crosswords for review only and then assess content mastery using the True/False test provided.
About the included The Eighties Test
The True/False test for this episode of The Eighties is designed to help teachers and students determine whether the “big picture” has been mastered. As such, the items on the true/false test consist of basic information that students should definitely know if they have paid attention to the episode.
The true/false test consists of 10 problems.
Teacher Convenience Features in this The Eighties Activity Pack
Some teachers like providing their students with time stamps to go with video questions, so they know when to expect the next problem. Other teachers would rather instruct students to listen carefully to the video so they are ready to tackle the next problem coming up.
These worksheets for The Eighties accommodate both teaching styles, including both a worksheet with a time stamp for each problem and a matching worksheet that leaves the time stamps out.
In addition, I’ve made both “large format” and “condensed” versions of each worksheet – both with and without time stamps. My thinking here is that some teachers want their students to have plenty of room to write in their answers, while others have limited time to make copies, and maybe even strict limits on how much paper they are allowed to consume.
• The “condensed” worksheets give students less space to write down their answers, but they also fit on fewer pages to save paper. Some students may find that the text on the condensed worksheets is too small for them.
• The “large format” worksheets use larger text and give students plenty of room to write, but of course that means they have more pages.
• The best of both worlds?
Teachers that want to cut their copying to an absolute minimum can make a class set of the “condensed” version worksheet and instruct students NOT to write on the worksheet but to use their own paper. This will mean that teachers can use the same copies year after year with multiple classes!
More than Just an Answer Key
The answers to the cloze problems are provided in context so that teachers can easily go over the material with the class. This allows teachers, for example, to read each prompt out loud and let the class or specified students announce the answer. Teachers can even designate a student leader to read the prompts aloud and verify the answer once it’s given, providing that student with the opportunity to augment his or her learning even further!
Similarly, the answer key to the True/False test is annotated with additional information to help teachers discuss the material with the class when going over the correct answers.
However you choose use these The Eighties worksheets, I hope that you find the video series and entertaining and informative addition to your American history teaching materials.
Where to find CNN’s The Eighties
At the time these materials were created, The Eighties was available for streaming on Netflix. There is every chance that Netflix may still have it available at the time you download these The Eighties worksheets. If Netflix is not an option, the next best way to find where it may be currently streaming is to run a simple Google search or to look on specific services such as Amazon Video, Hulu, and the like.
The series also airs from time to time on cable television and can be purchased online from a variety of retailers. Used copies can sometimes be found, which is a great low-cost way to purchase the series!
Looking for The Seventies Worksheets instead?
Looking for The Sixties Worksheets instead?
Or choose The Sixties or The Seventies worksheets for specific episodes:
The Sixties Episode 9 Worksheets -- The Times, They are a-Changin' -- The Women's Movement, Environmentalism, the Latino Rights Movement, the Gay Rights Movement, the Republican shift towards Conservatism
As always, happy teaching,