Joseph, B. (2008). Why Are Your Students Sleeping through the French Revolution? Social Studies, 99(4), 161-164. Retrieved from Academic Search Premier database.
Joseph’s article examines the need to reach students while teaching history, specifically about the French Revolution. Some students fall asleep during lectures on the French Revolution, because they fail to understand its relevance to them and are therefore not motivated to learn. Joseph states the three main reasons for why students struggle to learn about the revolution and then suggests several solutions for teachers. He also includes several lesson plans for teachers to use to enhance the learning material. Teachers can use simulations, stories, games, and artwork to get students involved according to the various intelligence types. If students can understand the importance of the time period, they can make it relevant to their own lives.
I completely agree with Joseph’s approaches for teaching. Having taught world history before, I understand the struggle of students to see the importance of the French Revolution. While I personally love the subject, students in today’s society find history boring at best. Why should they care about people who died two hundred years ago? Teachers must use interactive resources and multimedia to help students maintain their focus during history lectures. Multiple websites host games and interactive guides that students can complete on their own. Below is a list of my favorite French Revolution websites:
- ClassZone French Revolution Links
- Revolution Timeline
- Robespierre Quotes
- Marie Antoinette and the French Revolution
- French Revolution Videos
– Hannah S. Bowers