Instructional Video

The Schlieffen Plan - And Why It Failed

Did you know that the Schlieffen Plan was actually quite rigid, which led to its demise? Young historians discover all the details about how the plan failed, as well as its historical context to the broader subject of World War I using the resource. The video's narrator speaks charismatically about the general that started the plan, the country's military involvement, and includes useful maps and animations to bring the description of the plan to life.

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CCSS: Adaptable
Instructional Ideas
  • Conduct a Schlieffen Plan activity before watching the video in which scholars make their own plans with the military positions given at the time they create them
  • Assign pupils to write an essay about how the Schlieffen Plan affected further events in World War I
Classroom Considerations
  • Part of the Technology and Warfare in World War I series
Pros
  • Uses primary source quotes and images to build analysis skills
  • Effectively discusses the economic resources of several different countries in World War I and how that affected The Schlieffen plan's military strategy—building skills to view social studies concepts holistically
Cons
  • None
Common Core