Ch 26: The Cold War and Other 20th Century World History Lesson Plans

About This Chapter

The Cold War and Other 20th Century World History chapter of this course is designed to help you plan and teach about the post-World War II world in your classroom. The video lessons, quizzes and transcripts can easily be adapted to provide your lesson plans with engaging and dynamic educational content. Make planning your course easier by using our syllabus as a guide.

Weekly Syllabus

Below is a sample breakdown of the Cold War and Other 20th Century World History chapter into a 5-day school week. Based on the pace of your course, you may need to adapt the lesson plan to fit your needs.

DayTopicsKey Terms and Concepts Covered
Monday Beginning of the Cold War;
Africa after World War II
Causes and definition of the Cold War;
Post-war independence movements in Africa
TuesdayThe Cuban Revolution;
Korean and Vietnam Wars
The Cuban Revolution and Missile Crisis and role of the United States in the Bay of Pigs invasion;
Proxy wars in Korea and Vietnam
WednesdayIndia and Pakistan after World War IILives of Mohandas Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru; Muslim-Hindu conflicts and the division of India and Pakistan
ThursdayAsia, Europe and the Soviet Union after World War IIThe restructuring of the Japanese government under General MacArthur, Marshall Plan, Iron Curtain in Eastern Europe and Berlin Airlift
Friday Mikhail Gorbachev and the end of the Cold War;
New technology since WWII
Impact of Mikhail Gorbachev's policies on Cold War tensions and the collapse of the Soviet Union;
Operation Desert Storm;
Scientific and technological achievements in the East and West since World War II

16 Lessons in Chapter 26: The Cold War and Other 20th Century World History Lesson Plans
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
The Cold War: Definition, Causes & Early Events

1. The Cold War: Definition, Causes & Early Events

The period of distrust between the Soviet Union and United States was known as the Cold War. Learn about the origins of the era, essential events and the shaping of the national security state.

United States Involvement in the Korean War: Causes and Effects

2. United States Involvement in the Korean War: Causes and Effects

The Korean War was a short but bloody war with more than five million casualties. Find out what caused this deadly and destructive war, how the United States came to be involved and how the war affected Korea and its allies.

The Vietnam War: Causes, Conflicts & Effects

3. The Vietnam War: Causes, Conflicts & Effects

The Vietnam War was the longest and most polarizing conflict in the history of the United States. Learn about the causes of the war as well as its effects on the United States.

The End of the Cold War and Desert Storm

4. The End of the Cold War and Desert Storm

In this lesson, we will learn about the end of the Cold War and the Gulf War - also known as Desert Storm. We'll learn what led to these events and highlight the key themes associated with them.

Muslim and Hindu Conflict in India and the Partition of India and Pakistan

5. Muslim and Hindu Conflict in India and the Partition of India and Pakistan

In this lesson, we will learn about religious tensions in India and the partition of India and Pakistan following British rule. We will see what led to these developments, and we will explore their context.

Mohandas Gandhi: Beliefs, Accomplishments & Assassination

6. Mohandas Gandhi: Beliefs, Accomplishments & Assassination

In this lesson, we will learn about the life of Mohandas Gandhi. We will learn what values he stood for, how he stood for them, and his lasting legacy.

Who was Jawaharlal Nehru? - Biography & Rule

7. Who was Jawaharlal Nehru? - Biography & Rule

In this lesson, we will learn about the life of Jawaharlal Nehru. We will learn about his role in India's independence movement, and about his lasting impact on Indian national politics.

Sputnik to the Internet: How Technology and Science Have Changed Society since WWII

8. Sputnik to the Internet: How Technology and Science Have Changed Society since WWII

In this lesson, we will highlight critical scientific and technological advances since the end of World War II. We will explore the profound effects these advances had upon society.

Communism and the Cuban Revolution: Castro, the Bay of Pigs & the Cuban Missile Crisis

9. Communism and the Cuban Revolution: Castro, the Bay of Pigs & the Cuban Missile Crisis

In this lesson, we will examine the relationship between communism and the country of Cuba. We will focus specifically on the Cuban Revolution, Fidel Castro's rise to power, the Bay of Pigs Invasion, and the Cuban Missile Crisis.

Post-War Europe: the Berlin Airlift & the Marshall Plan

10. Post-War Europe: the Berlin Airlift & the Marshall Plan

In this lesson, we will learn about the Marshall Plan and the Berlin Airlift. We will examine the conditions in postwar Europe that resulted in these events, and we will understand why they are important.

Post-War Asia: Korea's Partition & Reconstruction of Japan's Government

11. Post-War Asia: Korea's Partition & Reconstruction of Japan's Government

In this lesson, we will examine post-war Asia. We will specifically focus on the partition of Korea, and the occupation and reconstruction of Japan. We will understand why these events took place, and how their impact is felt to this day.

Post-War Soviet Union & Eastern Europe: The Descent of the Iron Curtain

12. Post-War Soviet Union & Eastern Europe: The Descent of the Iron Curtain

In this lesson, we will learn about some of the dynamic events that followed World War II in Eastern Europe. We will explore the descent of the Iron Curtain, and learn about the formation of the Eastern Bloc states.

Gorbachev's Policies of Glasnost and Perestroika: Explanation and Significance

13. Gorbachev's Policies of Glasnost and Perestroika: Explanation and Significance

In this lesson, we will examine Mikhail Gorbachev's reform policies of glasnost and perestroika. We will learn what led to these developments and see how they impacted the Soviet Union.

Changes in Africa After World War II

14. Changes in Africa After World War II

In this lesson, we will examine changes in Africa following World War II. We will discover what factors led to decolonization in the wake of World War II, and we will highlight the central themes surrounding African independence movements.

The Cuban Missile Crisis: Definition, Facts & Timeline

15. The Cuban Missile Crisis: Definition, Facts & Timeline

Today, it's hard to remember that the U.S. and the Soviet Union had thousands of nuclear warheads pointed at each other, ready to fly at a moment's notice. But for a period of time, there was a possibility that between the two nations, all life on Earth could be extinguished. And that possibility was never more real, or closer, than it was in October 1962, during the Cuban missile crisis.

South Africa in the Apartheid Era

16. South Africa in the Apartheid Era

Alongside the American period of segregation and Jim Crow, South Africa remains one of only a handful of countries to legalize and institutionalize racial discrimination. This lesson explains that practice, as well as how it was dismantled.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
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Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
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Other chapters within the AP World History Syllabus Resource & Lesson Plans course

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