Social Studies - 2017-18

USII.8a - Rebuilding of Europe of Japan after WWII

The student will demonstrate knowledge of the economic, social, and political transformation of the United States and the world between the end of World War II and the present by

a)  describing the rebuilding of Europe and Japan after World War II, the emergence of the United States as a superpower, and the establishment of the United Nations.

Blooms Level: Remember

Adopted: 2008


Big Themes/Concepts: Alliance, Power, Authority, Political Systems, Order vs. Chaos

We can learn from our mistakes and do things the correct way the second time. 

Wars have political, economic, and social consequences. 

Working together to solve problems can prevent future issues from happening. 

The world divided into two sides during the Cold War.


Learning from the mistakes of the past, the United States accepted its role as a world superpower, helping to rebuild Europe and Japan and taking the leading role in establishing the United Nations.

How did the United States help rebuild postwar Europe and Japan?


Much of Europe was in ruins following World War II. Soviet forces occupied most of Eastern and Central Europe and the eastern portion of Germany. The United States felt it was in its best interest to help rebuild Europe and prevent political and economic instability.

Rebuilding efforts

·  The United States instituted George C. Marshall’s plan to rebuild Europe (the Marshall Plan), which provided massive financial aid to rebuild European economies and prevent the spread of communism.

·  Germany was partitioned into East and West Germany. West Germany became democratic and resumed self-government after a few years of American, British, and French occupation. East Germany remained under the domination of the Soviet Union and did not adopt democratic institutions.

·  Following its defeat, Japan was occupied by American forces. It soon adopted a democratic form of government, resumed self-government, and became a strong ally of the United States.

Establishment of the United Nations

The United Nations was formed near the end of World War II to create a body for the nations of the world to try to prevent future global wars.

Analyze and interpret primary and secondary source documents to increase understanding of events and life in United States history. (USII.1a)

Make connections between the past and the present. (USII.1b)

Sequence events in United States history. (USII.1c)

Interpret ideas and events from different historical perspectives. (USII.1d)


economic, social, political, transformation, superpower, Marshall Plan, George C. Marshall, occupied, partitioned, United Nations, global wars, military, veterans, freedom. 

Updated: Aug 17, 2017