Lesson Plan: Hippies and the Counterculture
Brainstorm with students what the term "hippie" means to them. Discuss how hippies expressed their dissatisfaction with our culture. Ask: How do groups today express their desire to change the prevailing culture? What do you think is the most effective means of influencing Canadian culture?
Outline the Opportunity
Direct students to the topic Hippie Society: The Youth Rebellion on the CBC Digital Archives website. Divide the class into groups of four or five and assign each group one of the following topics and corresponding clips:
The Roots of the Hippie Movement - "Beatniks: The hippie forefathers" and "Haight-Ashbury: The birth of hip"
Yorkville: The Hippies in Toronto - "Yorkville: hippie haven"
The Hippie Lifestyle - "Hippie life: It ain't easy" and "Welcome to the future: Less work, more play"
Vancouver's Human Be-In - "Festivals and happenings: Vancouver's Human Be-in"
The Hippies and the Authorities - "City
politicians averse to hippies" and "Can they see eye to eye?: Cops talk about
Have groups review their clip(s) thoroughly and take detailed notes. Groups will use their information to create a multi-media presentation on their topic. They can include music, video, poster board displays with interesting graphics and text, and any other materials they feel will help their audience understand their topic.
Revisit and Reflect
Have each group share its presentation with the rest of the class. Students should be prepared to ask and answer questions in order to gain a full understanding of all of the topics presented. Ask: Is any of what you learned from these presentations relevant to your life today? How?
Students can write in their journals about why they would or would not have wanted to be part of the hippie movement.