"Understanding the Salem Witch Trials
Using Historicasl Fiction”
Designed by
: Betty Jo Griffin, Whittier Elementary School,
Ryan Haynes, Bella Vista Elementary School
Helen Lim, Garfield Elementary,
Sylvia Mollard, Lazear Elementary
Tuyen Tran, Ph.D. Candidate, University of California, Berkeley, History Department,
Mark Zucker, Hoover Elementary

I. OVERVIEW (Background and Context of the Lesson to Be Studied):

Unit: Salem witch trials—not only high-interest for students with justice issues and questions of the supernatural, but rich in relevant context—question of church and state, understanding diversity, capital punishment, questioning scapegoatism, contrastive analysis between society and the present day, constitutional protection, gender roles.

Lesson: Cumulative Activity: (For group, this was S. Mollard’s class role play and then graphic organizer and then writing assignment). 

Class, together with the teacher, had written a script for the whole class to enact in order to crystallize contrastive analysis between rights of women, rights of the accused, and the role of religion at the time of the witch trials and the present day. Students would solidify content knowledge from the unit and demonstrate the ability to compare and contrast conditions then and now.