Monroe Doctrine Activities

Instructor: Heather Jenkins

Heather has a bachelor's degree in elementary education and a master's degree in special education. She was a public school teacher and administrator for 11 years.

The Monroe Doctrine has had a profound impact on the foreign policy of the United States. Use these activities to help students understand the Monroe Doctrine and its historical significance.

Understanding the Monroe Doctrine

It's amazing how one piece of paper can shape the history of a country. The Monroe Doctrine was initially President James Monroe's response to British colonialism and the United States' position in European affairs. Years later, however, the Monroe Doctrine was seen as a foundation for United States foreign policy as a whole. By understanding the Monroe Doctrine, students are able to see its influence in how the United States has conducted international affairs and the resulting responses from other countries.

Let's look at some activities to help students understand the contents of the Monroe Doctrine and its importance in history.

Political Cartoon


  • Copies of the Monroe Doctrine
  • Example of a political cartoon
  • Poster board
  • Art supplies (pencils, pens, colored pencils, markers)

Teacher Directions

  1. Provide each student with a copy of the Monroe Doctrine. Read excerpts from the document and help the students summarize the information contained in it.
  2. Show the students an example of a political cartoon. Discuss the purpose of political cartoons and the different ways artist can use them.
  3. Divide the class into pairs, and give each pair poster board and art supplies.
  4. Have the pairs create a political cartoon to show the main points Monroe Doctrine. Encourage students to think about subtle and creative ways to include information in the cartoon to convey the meaning of the document.
  5. When the pairs have finished, have them share their political cartoons with the class.

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