In this video from PBSLearningMedia, John Green teaches students about the beginnings of the American Revolution. John argues that the Seven Years War, which is often called the French and Indian War in the US, laid a lot of the groundwork for the Revolution. Other stuff was going on in the colonies in the 18th century that primed the people for revolution. One was the Great Awakening. The religious revival was sweeping the country, introducing new ideas about religion and how it should be practiced. At the same time, thinkers like John Locke were rethinking the relationship between rulers and the ruled. So in this highly charged atmosphere, you can just imagine what would happen if the crown started trying to exert more control over the colonies. This video can be used when teaching students about the role of essential documents in the establishment of colonial governments, including the Magna Carta, the English Bill of Rights, and the Mayflower Compact
In this video from PBSLearningMedia, John Green teaches students about the (English) colonies in what is now the United States. He covers the first permanent English colony at Jamestown, Virginia, the various theocracies in Massachusetts, the feudal kingdom in Maryland, and even a bit about the spooky lost colony at Roanoke Island. What were the English doing in America, anyway? Lots of stuff. In Virginia, the colonists were largely there to make money. In Maryland, the idea was to create a colony for Catholics who wanted to be serfs of the Lords Baltimore. In Massachusetts, the Pilgrims and Puritans came to America to find a place where they could freely persecute those who didn't share their beliefs. But there was a healthy profit motive in Massachusetts as well. Profits were thin at first, and so were the colonists. Trouble growing food and trouble with the natives kept the early colonies from success. This video can be used when teaching students about the House of Burgesses.
**Sensitive: This resource contains material that may be sensitive for some students. Teachers should exercise discretion in evaluating whether this resource is suitable for their class.
In this video from PBSLearningMedia, John Green teaches students about some of the colonies that were not in Virginia or Massachusetts. Old New York was once New Amsterdam. Before the English got there though, the colony was full of Dutch people who treated women pretty fairly and allowed free black people to hold jobs. John also discusses Penn's Woods, also known as Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania was (briefly) a haven of religious freedom, and William Penn dealt relatively fairly with the natives his colony displaced. We venture as far south as the Carolina colonies, where the slave labor economy was taking shape. John also takes on the idea of the classless society in America, and the beginning of the idea of the American dream.