Fidel Castro Lesson Plan

Instructor: Dana Dance-Schissel

Dana teaches social sciences at the college level and English and psychology at the high school level. She has master's degrees in applied, clinical and community psychology.

Who was Fidel Castro and what was his lasting legacy? This lesson plan outlines key facts about Fidel Castro's life and work through a detailed text lesson. An activity connects students with diverse perspectives on his life.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this lesson, students will be able to:

  • identify Fidel Castro
  • summarize the life and work of Fidel Castro
  • analyze the legacy of Fidel Castro


1 to 1.5 hours

Curriculum Standards


Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of primary and secondary sources.


Determine the central ideas or information of a primary or secondary source; provide an accurate summary of the source distinct from prior knowledge or opinions.


Identify key steps in a text's description of a process related to history/social studies (e.g., how a bill becomes law, how interest rates are raised or lowered).


Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including vocabulary specific to domains related to history/social studies.


Analyze the relationship between a primary and secondary source on the same topic.


  • A photograph of Fidel Castro
  • Paper copies of the text lesson Fidel Castro: Biography, Facts & Timeline
  • A worksheet created using the quiz from the associated text lesson
  • Assorted copies of obituaries written about Fidel Castro from differing perspectives


  • Begin by displaying the photograph of Fidel Castro for the class.
    • Can anyone identify this man?
    • Why was he significant in terms of world history?
  • Pass out the paper copies of the text lesson with each student receiving their own copy.
  • Instruct the class to read the introduction and 'The Beard that Changed the World' section of the text lesson.
    • Did anyone correctly identify the individual as Cuban leader Fidel Castro?
    • Now that we know the individual in the photograph is Fidel Castro, what facts do you know about him?
  • Ask the class to read the 'Lessons of the Law' section of the text lesson now.
    • What is a revolution?
    • What is capitalism?
    • What is a socialist?
  • Instruct the class to read the 'Viva la Revolución' and 'Batista Government Falls' sections of the text lesson now.
    • How did Fidel Castro's actions lead to his empowerment in Cuba?
    • Why do you think Castro partnered with the Soviet Union?
  • Have the class read the rest of the text lesson now.
    • What events led up to the Cuban Missile Crisis?
    • How did Castro's association with the Soviet Union backfire on him?
  • Share with the class that Fidel Castro died on November 25, 2016, in Cuba before reviewing key points from the text lesson with the class.
  • Pass out the worksheet, one copy per student.
  • Have students work independently to complete the worksheet.
  • Review the questions and answers from the worksheet with the class, asking students to self-correct their answers and allowing them to ask and answer questions as you go.

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