Red Scare Simulation

The fear of communism fueled by events in the USA itself, most notably the cases of the Hollywood Ten, Alger Hiss and the Rosenbergs. Organisations such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) investigated anyone thought to be associated with communism.

Preparation

  • At least 10% of all the students should have a dot. Allocate the slips of paper according based on the size of each class
  • Students will be in groups of 4 – print out enough copies of page 9 and 15 from Lucille Ball’s FBI file.

Procedure

  • Say “Students you will be given a sheet of paper containing a dot or not dot. Do not let anyone see the contents of your paper”
  • Have each student pick a sheet of paper (Dot no/dot)
  • Goal for the non-dots. Produce the largest group of non-dots. (the largest group wins)
  • Goal of the dots. Lie,cheat and deflect to break into a group of dots.
  • Give the students 5 minutes to produce the largest group of non-dots.
  • Have all the dots reveal themselves
  • Talk about the Red Scare
  • Printout Lucille Ball FBI Records (Page 9, 15)
  • Have students read these two pages in groups
  • Have the students vote whether they believe she is a communist or not a communist

Length

  • 45 Minute Session

Purpose

  • Get students to understand the impact and effect of the Red Scare

Resources