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Famous Person Speech Assignment Rubric

Speech Assignments

Remaining Speech Topics  

As we are approaching the fourth quarter, we have a limited time left in class; essentially  half of a quarter.  With that in mind, here are some possible choices for our last few speeches.  

  1. A speech on something that is a passion of yours

  2. Speaking about an inspiring person

  3. A belief/movement that is important to you

  4. A piece of media-song, movie, book-that is inspiring to you

  5. A speech about something that angers you

  6. Delivering a famous speech from a movie  

  7. An event that changed my life

The Movie Monologue Speech  

For this speech, you will be choosing a monologue from a movie to present.  Here are some guidelines:

  1. Through trial and error, we have determined that an ideal time frame for these speeches is somewhere between 1:30 and 2:30, give or take.

  2. While it is possible to do this assignment without memorizing the speech and working with speech cards, there is no question that movie monologues that are memorized, rehearsed and performed will be of higher quality than those that are a combination of reading and memorization.

  3. You should try to pick a monologue from a movie that fits with your personality and comfort level.  For instance, if you are not an angry, demonstrative person, you may find an angry speech difficult to do.

  4. This speech will require numerous rehearsals, some of which we will do in class, working on your memorization and performance.

  5. Finally, for many students, the most difficult aspect of this speech will be the performance piece.  There is a theatrical element to this which at first, some students may be self-conscious about.  This is something we will work on in class, and that you should support at home through rehearsal and prep.  Remember, we have been together since September and, as I think you know, you are among friends.  



Due dates for ABC class

Movie speech proposal***

Wed 5/10

First rehearsal speech

Fri 5/12 – first half of class

Final speech

Fri 5/12 – second half of class

***The movie proposal should consist of:

  • The name of the movie

  • A description of the scene

  • The scene’s running time

  • The transcript of the scene

  • The overall tone of the scene

Introductory Assignment 1:  Reading a Novel Excerpt  

As discussed in class, you will select a passage from a novel of your choice that runs around 2-4 minutes.  The passage should be from an age-appropriate novel and should include a mix of dialogue and narration as this will make your reading more effective.  

Due dates:  

  1. Email a proposal that includes the author and title of your book, the page numbers of your excerpt, and a brief description of the plot.  This is due by Sunday September 18th (ABC cycle) / Monday September 19th (DEF cycle) and is a graded assignment.

  2. Bring your novel in to class; we will each read about a paragraph to rehearse.  This will be graded as well.  

  3.  Full presentations will be a test grade.  

Rubric for Novel Excerpt Speech


Preparation-The reading has clearly been chosen with care and been thoroughly rehearsed.





Emphasis and pauses-Important words and phrases stressed.  Meaningful pauses.

Volume-The audience can easily hear the entire reading.

Format-The reading is the appropriate 2-4 minute length and includes both dialogue and narration.


Introductory Assignment 2:  Reading a Famous Speech  

Go to these two links to view a number of speeches to choose from

  • Select a speech that you like and choose an excerpt of 3-5 minutes that stands out to you as particularly powerful.  

  • On the first website above, a strong passage is already excerpted from each speech; on the second website, you will have to choose the passage that you want to work with.  Keep it around a minute in length.

  • Once you have your passage, read and rehearse it several times to get comfortable with names, hard to pronounce words, and the particular style of the speech.  Make decisions about which words and phrases should be stressed for emphasis.  

  • Practice reading your speech OUT LOUD a minimum of 3 times (5 would be better).  

  • Record yourself a few times and listen to how you sound.  Are you speed talking?  Too quiet?  Pronouncing clearly?  

  • Read your passage in class.  We’ll discuss the process, give feedback, talk about what was easy, hard, etc.  

 Assignments and Due Dates:  

1. Email a proposal that includes:

the speaker and title of the speech;

a detailed description of the speech that includes the year it was presented, where it was given, the historical and/or social context, the tone of the speech;

a description of the section you have chosen to read.

Email your proposal by Monday, October 17th for ABC section (Friday Oct 21st for DEF class) and is a graded assignment.

2. Bring your speech in to class on Thursday, October 20th (Tue Oct 25th for DEF class); we will each read about 30-60 seconds to rehearse.  This will be graded as well.  

3.  Full presentations will begin on Friday, October 21st (Wed Oct26th for DEF class) and will be a test grade.

Rubric for Famous Speech Reading






Preparation-The reading has  been chosen with care and been thoroughly rehearsed.

Emphasis and pauses-Important words and phrases stressed.  Meaningful pauses.

Volume-The audience can easily hear the entire reading.


Format-The reading is the appropriate 2-4 minute length and is paced well.

Speech 3:  Personal Introduction Speech

A personal introduction speech is not a biography; do not tell your life’s history.  Instead, relate an event or incident, or have a particular theme such as in the example below in order to reveal aspects of your personality and background.  

Individual Steps and Due Dates: (ABC in orange,DEF in purple)

One Sentence Topic Proposal:  Wed Nov 30

Bulleted Outline of Speech due:  Fri Dec 2

Speech Cards:  Working on in class Mon and Tue Dec 5,6

Rehearsal Mini-Speech: Wed Dec 7

Final Speech:  Wed Dec 14

There are two graded steps students should complete before their Personal Introduction Speech.  

The first is a list of bullet points that summarize the 7 main parts of the speech.  Here is a model summary:


  • Attention-Getter:  Tell a childhood story, a time when I fought with my mother and relate it to audience.

  • Thesis: I would not be who I am today without my family, friends, and the environment that surrounds me


  • First Example:  Family:   My sister- taught me not to care what people think. My Mom- taught me to care for the world, making me compassionate. My Father- why I am determined. My Step-Mother: why I trust so easily and love everyone. Step-Sister- why I am sensitive and don’t judge people. My Uncle Tom- why I live my life to the fullest.

  • Second Example:  Friends: Erika- is why I laugh so much and care for others. Amanda- why I appreciate the things I have. Hayley-why I don’t care what people think

  • Third Example:  Environment: At my dad’s I live near the ocean and it is why I want to become an oceanographer. At my mom’s I live in the city and it is why I know how to protect myself from others. My environment determined my life goals and helped me with my people skills.


  • Restate Thesis: Living in an environment with friends and family that make you happy is why I am who I am today and who I am going to be in the future.

  • End on a memorable note: Being around people who make you happy is all you really need to have an amazing life, because without happiness life is just one big black hole that never seems to end.

Model Bullet Points for a Speech on Hockey

My past experiences with ice have not exactly been pleasant.
  • The first time I went ice skating, I was constantly dragged down and used as a cushioning for my friends’ falls.
  • In middle school, I slipped and fell clean on my behind in front of some high school students.
  • I slipped and fell behind my mom’s car and she almost backed me over.
State/Say Thesis
Ice hockey has taught me to try new things, open up to others and learn to trust them, and achieve a dream I thought was impossible.
Example/Point #1
Thesis: My ice hockey experience has taught me to not be afraid of trying new things.
  • I picked up the sport quickly
  • I learned a new skill
  • It was a fun extracurricular
Example/Point #2
Thesis: Beginning ice hockey has helped me be more open to meeting new people and trusting my teammates.
  • My teammates were very supportive and welcoming
  • I was able to count on them for anything
  • I made new friends from other schools
Example/Point #3
Thesis: Joining ice hockey helped me realize any dream is possible as long as I work hard.
  • I worked out a ride to and from practice
  • I paid for and gathered my own equipment
  • I was responsible for balancing sports and academics myself
Restate Thesis
Ice hockey has taught me to try new things, open up to others and learn to trust them, and achieve a dream I thought was impossible.
End on Memorable Note
“Tthis jacket’s for you, you wear it loud and proud, you earned it.”

Second, students should make Speech Cards based on the format explained in class:

  1. 3×5 cards only

  2. Write on the blank side of the card only

  3. Number cards

  4. Write cards using a Sharpie or bolder; no pencils, pens, fine points

  5. Each card should have one phrase only–cards are not meant to be a script; they are a reminder of what you have already prepared and rehearsed.

    The two other graded steps are the rehearsal mini-speech and the final speech.

Rubric for Personal Introduction Speech  

Content-2 quiz grades
Score /5
Thesis clearly stated
Entire speech shows organization and planning
Body-vivid examples
Re-thesis/Memorable close
Presentation-1 quiz grade
Volume and clarity
Conversational tone
Pacing and length

Speech 4:  Good Will Hunting

After viewing Good Will Hunting, look at some of the movie’s themes, such as 

  • A person’s unexplored potential

  • How a lack of self image or self confidence can limit a person

  • Aiming too low in life

  • Settling for what is safe

  • Feeling that you don’t deserve success

Then create a 3-4 minute speech in response to one of these themes or one you have found in the movie.

You can:

  • Reference the movie and any of its dialogue.  A good way to do this is to view movie clips on youtube.  You can also go to and view the Good Will Hunting page which includes significant dialogue from the film.  Including a meaningful piece of dialogue will help the speech.

  • Make connections between the movie and your personal experiences.  This requires you to be  honest and open about yourself, but can lead to both a strong speech and a powerful growth experience for the speaker.

  • Make connections between the movie and human nature.  This is similar to the previous idea, but a little safer for the speaker.

  • Come to a conclusion that offers a suggestion for audience members who identified with Will.

Remember that every speech regardless of length needs an intro/body/conclusion.  A typical bulleted outline (as we have done before) is required , as are speech cards.

Good Will Hunting Movie Questions. This is a graded assignment.
  1. What are the two very different aspects of Will’s life that the movie establishes early on?
  2. Why does Jerry Lambeau go to Sean as his last resort to work with Will?  Why does he think Sean will be a better choice than the other psychologists?
  3. As they sit by the water, what point does Sean make to Will?  What is missing in Will’s life?
  4. What is Will afraid of?  Explain how he shows this fear with
    1. Skyler,
    2. with his decision to ignore his gift,
    3. with his defensiveness with Sean.
  5. As they talk by the pickup truck, what point does Chucky try to make with Will?  Why are the best ten seconds of Chucky’s day when he thinks Will won’t be there?
  6. Why does Sean keep telling Will, “It’s not your fault”?  What is he trying to convince him of?
  7. The movie tries to make the point that not living up to your potential is a waste and a tragedy.  Was the movie successful in making that point?  How did the movie use the characters of Will and Sean to show this?
Due date for EFG class
Due dates for ABC class
Quiz Grades
Good Will Hunting Movie Questions
Fri Jan 6
Fri Jan 13
GWH Bulleted Outline
See template below
Mon Jan 9
 Wed Jan 18
2 proposal
GWH Speech Cards
Thu Jan 9
Mon Jan 23 
GWH Final Speeches
Tue Jan 17
Tue Jan 24 

Bullet Points Template

State/Say Thesis
Example/Point #1
Example/Point #2
Example/Point #3
Restate Thesis
End on Memorable Note

Rubric for Good Will Hunting Speech


Score     /4
Speech shows org/planning
Memorable examples
Personal qualities (volume, tone)

Speech 5:  Reflective Speech –The Cranston East Speech

Schedule for when we return from Feb vacation :

ABC Section

Tue Feb 28 A
Bring in outlines; we will revise outlines if needed and work on speech cards
246 Computer Lab
Wed Mar 1 B
First rehearsal speeches
Thu Mar 2 C
First rehearsal speeches
Thu Mar 9 A
Final speeches-recorded
Fri Mar 10 B
Final speeches-recorded

DEF Section

Fri Mar 3 D
Rehearsal speeches
Mon Mar 6 E
Final speeches-recorded
Tue Mar 7 F
Final speeches-recorded

Speech 6:  Introvert/Extrovert Speech

Assignment based on Susan Cain’s speech:The Power of Introvertsis due on Thursday March 23rd (our next meeting date).

We gave notes in class related to Susan Cain’s speech and you should refer to those as well as the speech itself-you have the text and you can re-watch it if needed on the TED app or youtube.  

Then, create a 2-3 minute speech on one of these topics.  You should use information from the TED talk to inform your speech, but the majority of it should be your thoughts and beliefs on this topic and how you can use the information to make yourself a better speaker, student, and/or person.  

You could talk about:

  • anything that Susan Cain addresses in her TED Talk; the culture you grew up in;
  • the culture of America we all live in;
  • the ways in which you work best; how you see yourself;
  • the challenges that introverts face;
  • or any original idea of your own.

The schedule for assignments:  

Due dates for ABC Class
Due dates for EFG Class
Bulleted outline
 Mon Mar 27th
 Mon Mar 20th
Speech cards
 Wed Mar 29th
 Thu Mar 23rd
 Wed Mar 29th
 Fri Mar 24th


Speech 7:  Informative Speech

Purpose: Demonstrate the ability to effectively research, organize, write, and present an informative speech.

Assignment: Give a clear, well-researched 5-7 minute informative speech.

Prep: Follow these steps to successfully complete this assignment:

1.    Find an interesting topic (stay away from typical high school issues such as school uniforms or driving age, etc.)  that you would like to find more about.  Your topic should focus on one of the following areas

a.    a political, economic, social, religious, or ethical issue

b.    historical events and forces

c.    a theory, principle, or law

d.    a creative work (film, TV, music, art, literature)

2.    Pick a topic that is manageable and not too broad, such as “concussions in football” rather than just “football”. 

3.    Do some basic research just to get a sense of whether or not the topic has enough information available.  Submit a proposal that includes the topic and a one paragraph summary of what your speech will be about. Graded assignment.  Due date:  ABC class:  Tuesday 11/24 by email.  EFG class:  Thursday 12/3 by email.

4.    Create a bulleted outline of how you would like your speech to go.   You may edit this outline as you move ahead.  Graded assignment.  Due date: Saturday 11/28 by email.   Sunday 12/6 by email.

5.    Research your topic thoroughly and support your speech with this research.  You must cite at least 3 sources. (submit with outline)

6.    Use the same basic 7-part format as the Personal Introduction speech:

Attention-grabber and thesis statement;
3 main points;
restated thesis and memorable close.  

The only significant difference is that the informational speech will include credible research to support your 3 main points.

7.      Prepare note cards based on your research and preparation. Graded assignment.Due date: Wed. 12/2, the first day of our next cycle.  Due date:  Tue 12/8, the first day of our next cycle.

8.    Plan the speech by asking these questions:

a.    How will you go about building your credibility with the audience?

b.    How will you grab your audience’s attention and maintain their interest?

c.    How will you attempt to facilitate or create emphasis for understanding?

d.    What will you do to increase retention of your main ideas?

Content-2 quiz gradesScore /5Comments
Thesis clearly stated
Speech shows organization, planning
Research used and cited in speech
Re-stated thesis and definite conclusion
Speaker is knowledgeable about topic
Presentation-2 quiz grades
Volume and clarity
Energy, enthusiasm, confidence
Pacing and length
Filler words are controlled:     um, like, you know, and

Speech 8:  Almost Famous

After viewing Almost Famous, look at some of the movie’s themes, such as

  • Not fitting in

  • Having an interest in something different from everyone else

  • When people tell you why you can’t do a thing

  • How music can affect and influence a person

  • Being awkward

  • How “The only true currency in this bankrupt world is what you share with someone else when you’re uncool.”  

  • What would you admit to if you were on that plane and it seemed like it was going to crash?


  • Make connections between the movie and your personal experiences.  

  • Make connections between the movie and human nature.


Due dates for ABC class

Due dates for EFG class

Bulleted outline

Wed April 12th


Wed April 26th

Speech 9: PersuasiveSpeech

Purpose: The persuasive speech is related to the informative speech, except that you are doing more than simply providing information on your topic—you are also providing your own opinion on that topic and attempting to persuade your audience that your opinion is correct. This combination of opinion and persuasion is what makes the persuasive speech the most challenging.

Assignment:  Give a 5-7 minute speech in which you persuade the audience to believe as you believe about a certain subject.


  • The key to writing a persuasive speech is to begin by having an opinion—preferably an opinion that you feel strongly about. If you have no opinion on a topic, you won’t be able to persuade anyone else to agree with you.

  • You must first know whatyou believe and why you believe it. Your audience will immediately ask you why you hold that belief.

  • List the reasons why you believe what you do.

  • These reasons will become the major points in your speech with which you explain to your audience why hold the belief.

  • Use Aristotle’s three requirements to guide your speech

    • Be credible (ethos)—know what you’re talking about

    • Have expert knowledge—through research and personal experience

    • Use logic (logos)and emotional appeals (pathos)  to persuade the audience.


  • Establish your credibility and your qualifications.

  • Establish your expertise and your commitment to this opinion.

  • Use a combination of logic and strong emotional appeals to persuade the audience.

  • Give the audience a reason why they should care in the first place.

  • Build a logical argument by stating an opinion, then explaining a number of reasons that logically support that opinion, and finally, providing examples of each that illustrate your point and prove that it’s true.

  • Include emotional appeals, but understand how flimsy they are; less is more.

  • Remember that your thesis is an opinion, and your opinion must be proven if you want to persuade your audience. You need to give them clear reasons why they should embrace your opinion.

Speech 10:  Into the Wild

Supporting information on the movie if you miss a day of viewing: movie review site:

imdb page:

After viewing Into the Wild, look at some of the movie’s themes, such as

  • Exploration and adventure

  • Embracing the natural world and rejection of the modern world

  • Challenging the normal path that most of us accept (job, home, marriage, children)

  • Rejection of material things

  • Forgiveness and the danger of being unable to forgive (Chris and his parents)


  • Make connections between the movie and your personal experiences.  

  • Make connections between the movie and human nature

  • Follow the due dates listed below


Due dates for ABC class

Due dates for EFG class

Topic proposal

Mon 5/16

Email by Fri 5/13

Bulleted outline

Email by Thu 5/19

Email by Mon 5/16


Tue 5/24

Thu 5/19

Speech 11:  Final Reflective Speech

This Speech Will Include 3 Elements

  1. Reflective-Look at the speeches you have done this year and your development over the course of those speeches.  How have you improved?  What have you learned from the experience of doing these speeches?  What do you still need to work on?  

  2. Passion-What are you passionate about?  What moves you?  Where will your passion take you?  

  3. Wisdom-What can you share from your experiences this year as you examine your progress and as you have learned about yourselves and your passions, the things that move you and motivate you?  

How to Put Your Speech Together

As with previous speeches, it is really important to plan and organize your speech thoroughly.  Here are some suggestions:  

  • Identify a theme that ties together what you have learned, how it can be connected to your passion, and how your growth over this year may be valuable for someone else to know.

  • Plan the speech in 3 parts by putting together the Reflective, Passion, and Wisdom sections separately.  

  • Use transitions to connect the three sections.  

  • Design an intro and a conclusion that establish a context for what is to come.



Due dates for ABC class

Due dates for EFG class

Library Prep Days

Mon 6/6 & Tue 6/7

Thu 6/9 & Fri 6/10

Bulleted outline

Email by Tue 6/7

Email by Fri 6/10


Tue 6/7

Fri 6/10

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Lesson Plan

Biography Project: Research and Class Presentation


Grades6 – 8
Lesson Plan TypeUnit
Estimated TimeNine 50-minute sessions
Lesson Author





Set the stage for high-interest reading with a purpose through a biography project. 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. Students evaluate themselves and their classmates by using a rubric during the research and graphic organizer-creation process and by giving written feedback on one another's presentations.

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Bio-Cube: This planning tool can help students organize their research; use it as an extension to the lesson and have them outline the lives they' researched before writing their own biographies.

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International Reading Association. (2001). Comprehension, Part II: Text Comprehension. International Reading Association's Summary of the (U.S.) National Reading Panel Report "Teaching Children to Read." Retrieved October 1, 2003, from

  • By using graphic organizers, students write or draw meanings and relationships of underlying ideas. This has been shown to improve students' ability to recall content.

  • By summarizing information, students improve in including ideas related to the main idea, generalizing, and removing redundancy.

  • By working in cooperative groups, students may increase their learning of reading strategies through peer discussion. They may also lead to better comprehension.

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Students conduct research on issues and interests by generating ideas and questions, and by posing problems. They gather, evaluate, and synthesize data from a variety of sources (e.g., print and nonprint texts, artifacts, people) to communicate their discoveries in ways that suit their purpose and audience.



Students use a variety of technological and information resources (e.g., libraries, databases, computer networks, video) to gather and synthesize information and to create and communicate knowledge.



Students use spoken, written, and visual language to accomplish their own purposes (e.g., for learning, enjoyment, persuasion, and the exchange of information).


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Resources & Preparation


  • School or classroom library with a broad selection of biographies

  • Computers with Internet access and printing capability

  • Index cards

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Instructional Plan


Students will

  • Learn to ask relevant questions before beginning a research project

  • Learn to take notes and categorize information as they create graphic organizers

  • Improve comprehension as they read and skim text for main ideas and details

  • Develop research skills (book and Internet) with the purpose of teaching the class what they have learned

  • Think critically as they use rubrics and written feedback to evaluate their classmates and themselves

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Session 1: Before Reading

1.Ask students what a biography is and show an example of one. Ask them what sort of things they would expect to find out about a person’s life in a biography. Share a biography of Martin Luther King, Jr. and ask students to work in pairs to generate questions about his life. Then ask for their ideas for how this information might be categorized (such as childhood events, turning points, things he is famous for, etc.)

2.Have students brainstorm famous people who might have biographies written about them, and write student responses on the board.

3.Pass out the Sample Web graphic organizer and discuss how categories and subcategories can be used to summarize a person's life achievements. In the sample for Martin Luther King, Jr., categories include "childhood and young adult," "beginning of his career," "turning points," "march on Washington," "what he wrote," and "assassination."

4.Have each student narrow the list on the board to three famous people they might like to study (they will narrow it down to one during the next session, depending on availability of biographies).

5.Pair off students to discuss the people they're interested in researching. Have them ask each other what they already know about the people. What things do they not know but want to find out? Have students work together to help each other generate questions about each of the people they would like to learn more about.

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Sessions 2 to 5

1.Using your classroom or school library, have each student check out a biography of a famous person. The biography should be about one of the three people on the student's list from Session 1.

2.Pass out the Web Rubric and go over expectations and criteria with students.

  • Web has categories that fit with the information written about the person and are easily understood by the reader.

  • Each category has supporting information that helps the reader understand the details of the person's life.

  • The writing is clear with no spelling or grammatical errors.

  • Each bubble gives brief, clear information.

  • Web shows the main achievements of the person's life based on the student's interpretation.
3.Use the sample web for Martin Luther King, Jr. to model for students how each item of the rubric applies to the creation of the web.

4.Ask students to skim (or preread) their biographies, focusing on the questions they generated during Session 1 about the selected person. Then have students work with their partners to group the information they find into appropriate categories and start a rough draft of their webs.

5.For homework (and, if time, in class), have students read independently as they complete their webs.


Students can also use the list of suggested websites to add to their webs.

7.When the webs are complete, have each student use the Web Rubric to evaluate his or her own web.

8.Have each student share his or her web with a partner and give each other feedback and suggestions for improvement. The partner can fill out the same rubric using a different color.

9.Collect the students' webs, review them, and use the same rubric with another color to make suggestions for improvement.

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Session 6: After Reading

1.Return the rubrics to students, giving them time to review the comments from you and their partners. Allow them the opportunity to make revisions to their webs.

2.Have students copy their webs neatly onto butcher paper and prepare for the class presentation, writing notes or key words and phrases on index cards to help them remember what they will say.

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Sessions 7 to 9: Class Presentations

1.As students give the class presentations, have other students use the Oral Presentation Peer Feedback Form to write their feedback.

2.Collect the feedback forms, review and check them for inappropriate comments, and give each set to the corresponding presenter.

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Have students use their webs and the online Bio-Cube tool to plan and write biographies of the person they have researched. When they are finished, ask students to share the books with a younger class.

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Possible student assessments include:

  • Use the Web Rubric to grade the students' webs.

  • Use the Oral Presentation Rubric to grade students' presentations based on the quality and completeness of information given.

  • Observe and evaluate students' participation in group work and ability to critique other students' presentations based on their comments on the Oral Presentation Peer Feedback Form.

  • Have students reflect in their journals on what they have learned about the value of using webs to help them recall and organize information.

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Related Resources


Grades   6 – 12  |  Lesson Plan  |  Standard Lesson

What Did George Post Today? Learning About People of the American Revolution Through Facebook

After researching famous people of the American Revolution, students create Facebook-like PowerPoint presentations to share their knowledge with classmates.


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Grades   3 – 12  |  Calendar Activity  |  February 20

Actor Sidney Poitier was born in 1924.

Students do a journal entry about barriers that have been broken,such as age, race, and gender, that might impede them in the future, and how they can break through those barriers.


Grades   6 – 12  |  Calendar Activity  |  May 11

Pedro Albizu Campos leads the Puerto Rican Independence movement.

After learning about the story of Pedro Albizu Campos and his commitment to Puerto Rican independence, students research and share their learning about another nationalist figure from around the world.


Grades   4 – 8  |  Calendar Activity  |  April 18

Paul Revere began his famous midnight ride in 1775.

Through the study of Paul Revere, students learn about primary source documents while researching their family histories, with which they create and compare their family trees.


Grades   3 – 12  |  Calendar Activity  |  May 20

Charles Lindbergh began his transatlantic flight in 1927.

Students consider what is meant by the phrase "Human Hero," think of people who fit into the category, and read a biography of a selected hero.


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Grades   3 – 12  |  Printout  |  Assessment Tool

Oral Presentation Rubric

This rubric is designed to be used for any oral presentation. Students are scored in three categories—delivery, content, and audience awareness.


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Grades   6 – 12  |  Strategy Guide

Speak to Me: Teaching with Voki

Through Voki, a Web 2.0 tool, students create customizable avatars for class presentations for various purposes, such as presenting biographical information, expressing an opinion, or reading a poem.


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Grades   6 – 12  |  Podcast Episode

Life Stories

Life stories are books that trace defining moments and turning points in people's lives. By exploring how individuals overcome obstacles and discover their passions – or fall prey to mistakes and inner demons – life stories illustrate how human beings navigate the complexities of living. Tune in to hear about a variety of life stories – some that celebrate lives of success, others that mourn lives tragically lost or wasted.


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Brenda Hayes

February 05, 2018

Thank you for this lesson series! We are a homeschooling family and this provides a framework to support and focus our biographical assignments.


Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful ideas, I will certainly try them out.

I wanted to add a couple more ideas. The first one is to add a further section to the list of items that students must include, which is: A summary of the things that one can learn from this person, their life and experiences. It helps students really apply the insights into their own lives. They could be asked how they would implement some positive ideas into their own lives.

Also, it might be fun for students to write a small two minute speech as if they were the person they researched and present it to the class. It helps students find a voice in their own reading as well as writing. They may also try to dress and really act the part. This could be incorporated with drama as well.

Once again, thank you for sharing! :)