Famous Figures in History Minibook

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Language Arts, Reading, Reading Comprehension, Social Studies, United States History, World History

Grade 1- 3

Objective

Students learn about famous people in US history.

Directions

Introduce the concept of "fame" to your students as being the condition of someone who is well-known, usually for doing something exceptional. Discuss with your students what might make a person famous. Depending upon the age and prior knowledge of your students, you may need to discuss what "history" means.
Begin to make a list of famous people in history that your students know. Add to the list each day during your thematic study. Guide children in thinking of present-day famous people and heroes. Current athletes, musicians, authors, and actors may enter your list of famous figures today.
Introduce students to some of the people from My Book of Famous Figures in History. Have them try the following activities.
  • Work with your students to imagine what their lives would be like if they could not see. Have student volunteers wear blindfolds for a few minutes. Have other students press their ears closed so they cannot hear for a few minutes. (Be sure that students are safe during this simulation time.) Show students a sample of Braille writing and sign language, both of which were used by Helen Keller. Explain that people who are deaf can "hear" music by feeling vibrations of musical instruments. Use a variety of drums to have students experience the vibrations.
  • Since Einstein was curious about a compass and magnetic fields when he was a child, provide your students with hands-on experiences using a compass and using magnets. Play a recording of some classical violin music (or have an older student come into your classroom to demonstrate how to play the violin). Emphasize that Einstein was an accomplished violinist.

Extensions
  • Lead your students in a discussion to think of ways in which they might become famous. The possibilities are endless!
  • Guide your students in writing an essay entitled "How I Will Become a Famous Figure in History." Encourage students to think of their interests to guide them in their writing.
  • Have students learn more about Helen Keller, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Susan B. Anthony as part of a unit for Women's History Month.

Resources

  • My Book of Famous Figures in History activity sheets
  • scissors
  • crayons
  • stapler

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