1920s- Research Project

After reading the first three chapters of The Great Gatsby, meeting our cast of characters and having our first party at Jay Gatsby’s house, students will now begin to look into the decade that is known as the ’20s.


They will pick an element to focus their research on (fashion, politics, infrastructure, technological advancement, gender roles, society and everyday life etc.)

After researching their chosen area, they will put together a 2-3 minute presentation for the class. This presentation should include:

  • Speaking from both people in the pair.
  • A handout summarizing the highlights of their research for the class. This will be given to the teacher and put on the blog.
  • A visual aid for their presentation.

Students should highlight anything they find in their research that has also been seen or talked about in the novel. They are encouraged to cite their sources throughout their presentation.


As an alternative, students may decide to put together a presentation on one of the people, places or things alluded to in the novel so far. An example of this would be David Belasco “this fella is a regular Belasco!”

Students can conduct research on their identified person, place or thing and present their findings to the class in the same format as above. They should look to include an explanation as to why Fitzgerald has chosen that specific allusion and what this might add to our understanding of the story so far (or in the future!).


Students will have 5 periods to complete this project and will present to the class during Week 6 of Term 1.

Posted by Renee Plunkett

Teacher of English at Mount Aspiring College, Wanaka, New Zealand.

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