This lesson is a case study examining Nazi Germany and the United States during the 1930s, at a time when racism and eugenics were enshrined in law and practice. Students will examine the national and historical contexts in which racism manifested in the two countries, and explore how the pseudoscience of eugenics as well as concerns about "racial purity" found its way into the laws of the United States and Nazi Germany.
Grade level: Adaptable for grades 9–12
Time required: Approximately 200 minutes
Lesson Plan and Teaching Materials
Teachers can request physical printed Timeline Cards from the Museum.
- Lesson Plan (PDF)
- Racial Science Timeline Cards (PDF)
- Eugenics Powerpoint (PDF)
- Analyzing Primary Sources Worksheet (PDF)
- Student Interactive (PDF)
- Lesson Plan Photo (PDF)
- Primary Sources: Group A (PDF) and Group B (PDF)
- Venn Diagrams Worksheet (PDF)
For Learning Management Systems
This online lesson plan is compatible with learning management systems or web browsers for students to complete individually or as a class. You can use the PDF of the original lesson plan above as a guide. To use with your LMS, download the files below and follow your system’s instructions for importing files.