Using #Hashtags to Make History Come Alive - History Gal

Using #Hashtags to Make History Come Alive

By History Gal
I love history. And, I want students to love history. It should not be boring and rote. As a result, I am always trying to figure out ways to bring history to life for students. Most students have heard the phrase #not my president on the news or social media about the 2016 election of Donald Trump. I decided to use the phrase to get students to take a different perspective as they learn about the Presidents of the United States in the U.S. History class.

Throughout U.S. History, Presidents have angered segments of the population with their actions. George Washington's Whiskey Tax incensed the farmers in Western Pennsylvania. If they used hashtags, they might have said #not my president #whiskey rebellion. John Adams' Alien and Sedition Acts angered Thomas Jefferson and James Madison so much they wrote the Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions. Thomas Jefferson's Embargo Act destroyed the nation's economy - can't you just picture the angry citizens burning him in effigy holding up signs saying #not my president?
by History Gal

The list goes on and on:

*War of 1812 draft rioters - #James Madison #not my president
*Native Americans - #Martin Van Buren #Andrew Jackson #not my president
*Suffragettes - #Woodrow Wilson #not my president
*Unemployed - #Herbert Hoover  #not my president
*Japanese-Americans - #Franklin D. Roosevelt #not my president

By History GalThis can also be used in World History. Substitute #not my president for #not my emperor/king/tsar. Have students brainstorm. What groups might have used the phrase?

Some examples:

*Rebelling Jews to Rome - #not my emperor
*Martin Luther to the Catholic Church - #not my church
*English Civil War - #not my king
*Vladimir Lenin to Nicholas II - #not my tsar

Just this simple act of connecting a modern phrase to something in history helps students make a connection and all of a sudden, history isn't about a bunch of dead people. It's about people who lived.

Click HERE for a free download of #Not My President worksheet for your U.S History class (I even included a World History version!) 

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  1. What a wonderful idea for helping students connect the past to the present! Thanks so much for sharing!

  2. I love this! I actually laughed out loud at #not my Tsar -Lenin. that's an understatement! ha!


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