Cold War PowerPoint & Google Slides | American History



The Cold War effects the world we live in today. This engaging PowerPoint (or Google Slides) presentation on the Cold War is a great resource for teachers. It will help your students learn about the causes and effects of the Cold War. It will also touch on important topics like the Nuclear Arms Race, Space Race, Berlin War, and other Cold War events.

This PPT and Primary Source Activity will teach your students…

  • Western and Eastern Blocs
  • Soviet republics (e.g, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, and more)
  • Formation of United Nations (UN)
  • Bretton Woods
  • Truman Doctrine
  • Marshall Plan and Molotov Plan
  • Berlin Blockade and Berlin Airlift
  • NATO and Warsaw Pact
  • Chinese Communist Party
  • Berlin Wall
  • Nuclear Arms Race
  • Red Scare (McCarthyism)
  • Korean War
  • Vietnam War
  • Communist Cuba
  • Space Race
  • Détente
  • Soviet-Afghanistan War
  • Miracle on Ice
  • Glasnost & Perestroika
  • Tiananmen Square Massacre
  • Dissolution of the Soviet Union
  • and much more!

Files in this download include:

  • Editable PowerPoint (Google Slides option available)
  • Primary Source PDF (Google Drive option available)
  • Student Study Guide Notes (print or load to LMS)
    • Editable Word Document version
    • Fillable PDF version
    • PDF version
    • Answer key
  • Teacher Guide PDF (print one copy for you)

If you are a busy social studies teacher that expects the best for your students and want to feel confident in front of the class, this PPT is perfect because it is professionally designed, useful, and enjoyable for the students.

Zero to minimal preparation necessary. Just print the Teacher Guide Sheet for you (if you deem it necessary), then print the Student Study Guide Notes and primary source for students. If you want to save time (and paper), you could simply upload these files to your Learning Management System (LMS) and students could use the files on their devices.

To make the lesson more interactive, one slide directs the students to read a primary source by Joseph McCarthy. Students can work in groups, read the primary source, answer the questions (which can be found on their Student Study Guide Notes), then you can have a class discussion.

The design is professional and with the right amount of words on each slide (i.e. NO death by PowerPoint). The content is very detailed in the notes, so if you are busy, you could simply open the slides in front of the class and read the notes (it is suggested you review the slides before class though).

Furthermore, it includes a teacher guide sheet that you can print and use when presenting. The information in the guide sheet and PPT notes include additional information that is not on the slides (in other words, it will make you look smart!). This way, you can add interesting little comments or data to each slide. You can either print the whole guide sheet, or just the pages you need help with.

You can make changes to the PPT, if you deem it necessary. This presentation can be used in Microsoft PowerPoint or Google Slides (if you want to use Google Slides, just click the link which is found on the first slide).

This PPT follows standard American history textbooks.

How to use this presentation:

  • Present the PowerPoint (or Google Slides) in the classroom; one slide includes an interactive primary source activity for students to complete
  • Present and discuss – while presenting, get students involved and ask discussion questions that get students thinking like a historian and comparing historical events to current events
  • Students fill out the Student Study Guide Notes while you are presenting

Additional information

Grade Level

8th, 9th, 10th

Resource Types

Full Units, Homeschool, PowerPoints, Google Slides


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