3-5, 6-8, 9-12
Students learn about themselves by researching others. They also learn that they are not all that much different from the people they research!
- learn that they have many gifts.
- learn that they have things in common with the great people of history!
biography, compare, poem, poetry
- construction paper
- digital camera, printer, Internet access (optional)
This lesson is a good companion or follow up to a lesson in which students research biographical information about a famous person in history.
Introduce the lesson by sharing a simple format for writing a biographical poem. I practice the form with students by using myself as an example. Then I let students write their biographical poems following the format below.
Student's First Name___________________
______, ______, ______ [List three adjectives that describe yourself.]
Lover of ______
Who fears ______
Who would like to ______
Son/Daughter of ______
Resident of ______
Student's Last Name ___________________
When they finish, I have students use the same format to write biographical poems about historical figures they have studied. If they have not recently done such research, students might use a Web site such as Biography.com or other library resources to do so at this time. The activity provides a unique opportunity for students to reflect on the idea that they might have many things in common with the famous people they research.
Finally, have students paste both biographical poems on construction paper. Students should find and cut out pictures of their research subjects and paste the photos next to the biographical poems of historical people. Then take digital pictures of the students and have them paste those pictures next to their own biographical poems. Post the biographical poems side by side on a bulletin board.
After they complete the project, have students write brief compare-and-contrast essays about the people they researched and themselves.
Monique Arnold, Bremond (Texas) Independent School District