Students work together to generate questions they would like to answer about several well-known people, then each student chooses one of these and finds information by reading a biography from the library and doing Internet research. Students create a graphic organizer a web to organize the facts they have found and share what they have learned about their subjects through oral presentations.
Understand that biographies give an account of a person's life and achievements Explore several different types of biographies to help determine their area of interest Choose one notable person they would like to learn more about Complete an online tutorial on biographies Use print and web resources to research one person Fill out a biography graphic organizer Materials Biography Writing With Patricia and Frederick McKissack: To generate the greatest interest among your students, make sure your assortment includes biographical books about people who have made notable contributions in the following categories: Up until this point, students may only have limited exposure with a few well known figures so a wide variety of books can really spark an interest in this genre.
I separate these books into baskets labeled with each category so students can quickly find books that meet their interests. A Writing With Writers Activity that you will use with your students during this lesson. Make a class set of the Research Notebook from the Biography Writing With Patricia and Frederick McKissack activity or another graphic organizer for students to use to record research questions and sources.
Lesson Directions Part I: Introducing the Genre Step 1: Introduce the biography genre by telling your students that biographies are the one genre that can open their eyes and hearts to people who have made a difference in the world.
They can learn about lives and eras of both the past and present. Read the following to your students to pique interest: Ingenuity, creativity and curiosity: These traits define the world's greatest inventors.
This person, one of history's most productive inventors, possessed all three qualities in great quantities. Some of his better known inventions include the odometer, bifocals and a more convenient way to heat homes.
Help with Writing Reports. Go Back: Virtual Middle School Library Home / Web Sites for Students Menu /Help with Writing Reports How to write the paper including doing the dreaded bibliography. Study Guides and Strategies - There is a lot here to help you become a better student and a better writer and researcher.; Study Skills for Students - . -Organizational pattern and layout are an excellent fit for the topic, purpose and audience-Introduction grabs the reader’s attention and conclusion is strong. A directory of biographies of notable people for middle school students and teachers.
He also was responsible for the very first lending library, the first volunteer fire department and daylight savings time. Ask students if they can guess who this great American was. The answer, of course, is Benjamin Franklin, but most students do not know him as a prolific inventor.
If you'd like, you may choose to read more about Benjamin Franklin from any biographical resource you may have. Ask questions along the way to stimulate students' thinking. Tell students they have the opportunity to learn many interesting facts they do not know about people when they explore biographies.
Discuss with students any notable people they may already know a great deal of information about, and who they may like to learn more about. Generate a list of possible names or categories of people on the board or a piece of chart paper.
Allow students to explore your collection of biographies. I prefer to do this by setting up centers with baskets of biographies that are labeled.
Allow at least 30 minutes for students to browse through the many biographies you have provided. I normally wait approximately three days before moving onto Part II. During this interim, time is provided for students to read the biography collection daily.
By the time I move into Part II, most students have found a person of interest and they are eager to begin learning more. If possible, take your students to the school library where they can check out biographies of people they would like to read more about.
Writing a Biographical Sketch Step 1: Using your school computer lab or computers in your classroom, guide students through the online tutorial Biography Writing With Patricia and Frederick McKissack: A Writing With Writers Activity.Bio Cube: This option allows students to develop an outline of a person whose biography or autobiography they have just read; it can also be used before students write their own autobiography.
Specific prompts ask students to describe a person's significance, background, and personality. The genre of autobiographical writing builds on the existing interest that middle school students already have in themselves and their lives while helping them develop and understand the craft of writing.
Middle school resources can sometimes fail to meet our expectations (or keep kids engaged). We offer middle school help designed for multiple types of learners. Visual learners may benefit from worksheets, while hands-on learners may find our activities more engaging.
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