Harry S. Truman Presidential Library & Museum


The Lives and Legacies of our Presidents and First Ladies through a Wax Museum Presentation
Author:
Nancy Ohmart
Course:
US History
Time Frame:
• The required time will vary depending upon the depth instructors desire to go. I would plan one week in and out of class WHILE continuing to finalize details over the next 2-3 weeks. IF you do open presentations to parents and others on a
Grade Levels:
6, 7, 8, 9, 10

Classroom/Homework Activity to be performed:
  • Students will research and analyze the lives and legacies of a US President or US First Lady, utilizing at least three online websites and at least one written source (the book, “First Ladies” is strongly suggested for those researching our First Ladies). They will then write a research paper explaining that person’s childhood and family, education, and identifying, assessing, and giving their own point of view over their subject’s legacy in American History. Then students will compose a Wax Museum presentation with a two minute speech and a costume which accurately conveys their subject and time period. The students will, finally, create and design a poster board (or something similar) as a visual presentation to provide additional information about their subject, which should also have a self-generated timeline with at least 10 vital pieces of information about their subject and a coordinating picture.

Rationale:
  • Students will reveal additional information about our country’s leaders, teaching each other AND learning from each other.  Students will develop a deeper understanding of how to write a research paper and how to utilize that information to write and present a well prepared and rehearsed speech. Students will also be allowed to be creative in their character attire and visual poster presentation.

District, state, or national performance and knowledge standards/goals/skills met:


  • SS6 1.6, 3.6 Assess how personal and group experiences influence people’s perceptions and judgments of events -
  • SS6 3.6, 3.5, 1.6 - Analyze how ideas, concepts, and traditions have changed over time (e.g., women’s role in society)
  • SS7 1.2, 1.4, 2.1 - Select, investigate, and present a topic using primary and secondary resources, such as oral interviews, artifacts, journals, documents, photos and letters
  • SS7 1.4, 3.5, 1.6 - Create maps, graphs, timelines, charts and diagrams to communicate information
  • SS7 1.7, 3.6, 3.5 - Use technological tools for research and presentation

 

Secondary materials (book, article, video documentary, etc.) needed:

Book and C-Span Videos, “First Ladies,” book edited by Susan Swain, N Y., 2015.

Full description of activity or assignment.

Teachers will introduce this unit daily with a quote from one of our First Ladies from the book, “First Ladies.”  Teachers and students will discuss quotes, introducing the role and legacy of the First Ladies.

Then the teacher will present the project to students (you could do a Prezi or PowerPoint OR you could do a hard copy and handout to each student.  Either way, I suggest you do a written contract for students and possibly parents to sign). Daily, teachers will provide suggestions to aid their students in their research, rehearsals/practice, and creations, encouraging and providing positive suggestions for students.  Teachers could allow students to work in small groups or on their own.

 

  1. Students will research their chosen US President or First Lady and compose a research paper   which answers but is not limited to the following questions:

a. When was your subject born, where, etc.

b. Explain their family including their childhood, education, etc.

c. Assess how the time historical time period your subject lived in effected their life.

d. Describe adult life; what where their most important accomplishments as president &/or first lady, death, etc.

e. Evaluate your subject’s impact or affect upon your life today. Assess whether your subject did what they did based upon religious, political, social, and/or economic or environmental reasons.

  1. Students will write their research paper in a 5 paragraph essay and include a properly written bibliography including at least five sources.
  2. Students will create a two-minute Wax Museum Figure Speech, memorize, and present the speech.
  3. Students will, outside the classroom, work on their costume and finalize their paper, speech, and poster timeline.

Full explanation of the assessment method and/or scoring guide:
  1. Written Research Paper
  2. Prepared and delivered Speech including costume
  3. Poster board visual presentation including Timeline

 

Group Planning -- Research Project : Wax Museum Rubric

Teacher Name: 


Student Name:     ________________________________________

 

CATEGORY

20

15

10

5

Quality of Sources

Researchers independently locate at least 5 reliable, interesting information sources for EACH of their ideas or questions.

Researchers independently locate at least 4 reliable information sources for EACH of their ideas or questions.

Researchers, with some adult help, locate at least 3 reliable information sources for EACH of their ideas or questions.

Researchers, with extensive adult help, locate at least 2 reliable information sources for EACH of their ideas or questions.

Ideas/Research Questions

Researchers independently identify at least 5 reasonable, insightful, creative ideas/questions to pursue when doing the research.

Researchers independently identify at least 4 reasonable ideas/questions to pursue when doing the research.

Researchers identify, with some adult help, at least 3 reasonable ideas/questions to pursue when doing the research.

Researchers identify, with considerable adult help, 2 reasonable ideas/questions to pursue when doing the research.

Writing

Students final paper was excellent following the 5 paragraph direction with a topic sentence on each and an introductory paragraph and summary paragraph and a proper bibliography

students final paper was good following the 5 paragraph direction with a topic sentence on each and an introductory paragraph and summary paragraph

and a proper bibliography

students final paper was fair following the 5 paragraph direction with a topic sentence on each and an introductory paragraph and summary paragraph with two errors. It does include a proper bibliography

students final paper was fair following the 5 paragraph direction with a topic sentence on each and an introductory paragraph and summary paragraph with three or more errors; bib needs work

Speech

students final speech was excellent, clearly spoken, giving at least 5 pieces of information in an interesting way, and they had memorized their speech

students final speech was good, clearly spoken, giving at least 5 pieces of information in an interesting way, and they had memorized almost all of their speech

students final speech was fair, somewhat clearly spoken, giving at least 4 pieces of information in an interesting way, and they had memorized most of their speech with few errors

students final speech needs more rehearsing and more content

Poster Display

students poster timeline display was excellent with at least 10 pieces of information and high quality pictures for each

students poster timeline display was good with at least 8 pieces of information and high quality pictures for each

students poster timeline display was fair at least 6 pieces of information and high quality pictures for each

students poster timeline display needs more direction, work, and attention