Let the Sunshine in- The Hippie Movement

Teacher Name: Darryl Carr Grade Level(s): 9-12 Course: Social Studies

Anticipatory Lesson:


Preparation: decorate the classroom with colorful paper flowers, the “peace sign”, a banner reading, “Love not War” hanging across the white board

Type of classroom activity to be performed:
This lesson will be a cooperative learning activity using primary sources, audio and video clips, along with art and fashion to depict how the movement influence and changed the face of Americana.
Rationale: This lesson will allow students to create a visual representation of the Hippy Movement, tracing it origins along with presenting information about a cultural movement. Additionally, students will investigate the counterculture of the 1960’s and ‘70’s, along with the movement’s experimentation with politics and anarchy and communism.
Required time frame: 3-4 regular class periods.

Lesson Objectives—the student will be able to demonstrate knowledge in reference:
  • To the Hippie’s experiment and alternative lifestyle
  • Why did their experiment in anarchy and communism fail
  • What could have made the experiments successful
  • Create a short opinion based document about the movement
Secondary Materials:
  • Various books with information on the Hippie Movement
Primary Sources:
  • Radio Broadcast clips # 4,5,9, 11,12, and 13 Rockdale: the experiment explodes


Technology Required:

· Computer access to Youth Rebellion on CBS radio and television archives

Fully describe the activity or assignment in detail. What will both you and the students do?
Have students to give their definition of “Hippies.” Next, have the students, look-up “Hippies” on the internet. Allow the students to find information on clothes, music, culture and politics. In groups of three have the students view clips # 4, 5, and 9. Students will take notes on a “T-chart” comparing the views of the hippies with those of the authority. The class will resemble discussing their finding and create a master T-chart with their findings, noting the philosophical difference the hippies and authorities. On the next class session, have the students define “Anarchy” and “Communism.” Students are to write the definitions on the whiteboard. To ensure students have a clear understanding of the words and meanings, have several students give examples of “anarchy” and “communism.”
Have students listen to clips #11, 12 and 13. Form four small groups of four students, assigning one of the following questions for each group to answer:
1. What were the results of the hippies’ experiments with alternative lifestyles?
2. Why did the experiments in anarchy and communism eventually fail?
3. What could have made the experiments more successful?
4. What are your opinions of anarchy and communism as systems of social organization?
Have each group present and discuss their question and answer.
On the following session, reflect what the students have learned about the hippie movement. Have discussion on the effects of anarchy and communism in today’s political and economic economy. Do the students think there are alternative points of view in today’s political and economic agenda?

The hippies are now in their 50s, 60s, and 70s. Students can write a three-page opinion paper about how they think the hippies’ experimentation with alternative lifestyles affected the rest of their lives, if at all. Additionally, Students can role-play a confrontation between a small group of hippies and an authority figure. Remind them to show respect for the views of both groups and to share their arguments respectfully.