AS/A2 SMART TASK Did the ending of the Second World War make the Cold War inevitable?

In order for students to form their own view on this challenging question they read, discuss, sort and then place on a spectrum a number of influence cards enabling them to form a view about Michael Dobbs’ latest theory.


Begin with the quotation from Hitler shown on slide 2 of the PowerPoint presentation (RS1).  His uncanny prediction should interest the students.  But has his view been shared by historians? Show slide 3 which shows Michael Dobbs’ recent view. (RS3 gives you a fuller article for you to see his reasoning).

Step 1

Set up the enquiry. Explain to the students that they are going to answer an examination question on the origins of the Cold War but they need to be careful to include only relevant points.  To help them think about the issues, the arguments and the evidence, students complete a spectrum activity using the information cards (RS1) and the spectrum template (RS2).

Step 2

Print off the spectrum (RS2) so that it is A3 size.  Students work in pairs, or at most in 3s, and have to decide whether the information they have been given on each card supports or opposes the assertion that the ending of

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