Daily Activities – Woolfolk Murders
The daily activities created for each of the Today in Georgia History segments are designed to meet the Georgia Performance Standards for Reading Across the Curriculum, and Grade Eight: Georgia Studies. For each date, educators can choose from three optional activities differentiated for various levels of student ability. Each activity focuses on engaging the student in context specific vocabulary and improving the student’s ability to communicate about historical topics.
One suggestion is to use the Today in Georgia History video segments and daily activities as a “bell ringer” at the beginning of each class period. Using the same activity daily provides consistency and structure for the students and may help teachers utilize the first 15-20 minutes of class more effectively.
Level 1: Provide the students with the vocabulary list and have them use their textbook, a dictionary, or other teacher provided materials to define each term. After watching the video have the students write a complete sentence for each of the vocabulary terms. Student created sentences should reflect the meaning of the word based on the context of the video segment. Have students share a sampling of sentences as a way to check for understanding.
Level 2: Provide the students with the vocabulary list for that day’s segment before watching the video and have them guess the meaning of each word based on their previous knowledge. The teacher may choose to let the students work alone or in groups. After watching the video, have the students revise their definitions to better reflect the meaning of the words based on the context of the video. As a final step, have the students compare and contrast their definitions to their textbook, dictionary or other teacher provided materials definitions.
Level 3: Provide the students with the vocabulary list and have them use their textbook, a dictionary, or other teacher provided materials to define each term. After watching the video, have the students write a five sentence paragraph based on the provided writing prompts.
1. In a five-sentence paragraph, explain the difference between a lynching and an execution. In your answer, be sure to discuss who carries out an execution versus a lynching.
2. In a five-sentence paragraph, explain why you think the Woolfolk murders were so heavily covered by the media.
3. In a five-sentence paragraph, use Tom Woolfolk’s experience with the judicial system to explain the process of trial and appeal in the United States.
Related Georgia Performance Standards:
Reading Across the Curriculum (Grades 6-12)
SSRC1 Students will enhance reading in all curriculum areas by:
c. Building vocabulary knowledge
• Demonstrate an understanding of contextual vocabulary in various subjects.
• Use content vocabulary in writing and speaking.
• Explore understanding of new words found in subject area texts.
d. Establishing context
• Explore life experiences related to subject area content.
• Discuss in both writing and speaking how certain words are subject area related.
• Determine strategies for finding content and contextual meaning for unknown words.
Common Core, College and Career Readiness Anchor Standards for Writing
Text Types and Purposes
1. Write arguments to support claims in an analysis of substantive topics or texts, using valid reasoning and relevant and sufficient evidence.
2. Write informative/explanatory texts to examine and convey complex ideas and information clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content.
3. Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, well-chosen details, and well-structured event sequences.
National Curriculum Standards for Social Studies
Theme 4: Individual Development and Identity
Grade 8 Georgia Studies
SS8CG4 The student will analyze the role of the judicial branch in Georgia state government.
a. Explain the structure of the court system in Georgia including trial and appellate procedures and how judges are selected.
b. Explain the difference between criminal law and civil law.
c. Describe the adult justice system, emphasizing the different jurisdictions, terminology, and steps in the criminal justice process.
d. Describe ways to avoid trouble and settle disputes peacefully.
e. Evaluate how the judicial branch fulfills its role in interpreting the laws of Georgia and ensuring justice in our legal system.
American Government, 9-12
SSCG22 The student will demonstrate knowledge of the criminal justice process.
a. Analyze the steps in the criminal justice process.
b. Explain an individual’s due process rights.
c. Describe the steps in a criminal trial or civil suit.
d. Examine the different types of sentences a convicted person can receive.