The Age of Revolutions


Who doesn’t love posters?

In a unit on nationalism and the Age of Revolutions (1848 in France, Germany, France, Hungary, etc. along with the Latin American revolutions) to do an in-class assessment, students were asked to create a poster advertising one of the revolutions in question.

Positives: It’s a fun opportunity for students to work together (or alone) and use colored pencils or markers to do something fun.  They can be displayed in the room, which is always fun, and it’s a good way for students to become experts on one aspect of the unit.

Negatives:  It can take a whole class period to work on it, and another class period if you want the pairs to present.

For this assignment, I gave students an assignment sheet explaining the project, and I showed them examples I created about the American Revolution.

Here is the assignment sheet I gave students:

Selling the Revolution

Your task is to create a poster advertising a revolution, revolutionary person, or revolutionary ideal.  Think about advertisements you’ve seen for products, politicians, or events.  Like most effective advertising, you will use pictures and words to create an ad about your revolution, person or ideal.  This assignment is worth 20 points.

You will need to keep in mind:

  • What are you advertising?  Why is it important?  What do we need to know about it?  What don’t we want to know about it?
  • Who are you trying to convince with this ad?  What matters to them?

You will be scored on the following criteria:

  • Is it effective and make the revolution/person/ideal seem appealing?
  • Does it include accurate historical details?
  • Is it visually appealing?  You will need to use pictures as well as words, presented neatly and colorfully.

Our revolutions were: Germany (1848), France (1848), Haiti and Mexico, and our Revolutionaries were Simon Bolivar, Jose de San Martin and Lajos (Louis) Kossuth, and our ideologies were Conservatism (the Klemens von Metternich kind), Liberalism and Nationalism.

I showed examples on a PowerPoint, but certainly an overhead slide would work as well.  Students can create their posters on large paper, poster board, or simply on 8 1/2 x 11 paper, depending on your resources.

Here are my examples:


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One Response to “The Age of Revolutions”

  1. Jason Says:

    I love posters!

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