Category Archives: Teaching Tools

You Have One

When I write historical fiction, I always have middle school students in mind. “You Have One”, a recent short piece, seemed a good candidate for them. President Lincoln met with many ordinary Americans during his time in the White House and especially spent time seeking to ease the grief of those who had lost loved ones to the war. I’ve retold a Lincoln anecdote here in hopes of making it more accessible to students.  I’ve included pre-reading vocabulary activities, reciprocal teaching comprehension questions and post-reading activities for You Have One. It’s free on TPT. Please do let me know what you think of it.

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Lincolns-White-House-You-Have-One-6710874#show-price-update

Gettysburg

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George Washington was no dummy!

Life mask of George Washington

President Washington published his Farewell Address on September 19th, 1796 in the American Daily Advertiser. He did so to decline a 3rd term as president prior to the upcoming election. Both James Monroe and Alexander Hamilton helped him compose this statement. Given recent events, it is as timely and important now as it was then.  It warns of party extremism, reminds us of our responsibilities to each other and calls on us to abide by our Constitution.  

             I created some activities to open this essential document to student unaccustomed to 18th Century prose. The lessons for each brief excerpt will include vocabulary, directed reading and reciprocal teaching activities as well as critical thinking and writing opportunities. The excerpted texts of the Address have a difficult Flesch-Kincaid reading level of 12th grade, hopefully mitigated by my work.

            I intended the first excerpt to be introductory in nature in hopes that it would help students acclimatize to President Washington’s voice. The second excerpt recounts his warning against party extremism. Subsequent excerpts will deal with the substantial content of Washington’s remarks. Please look for them on TPT. I’ll post more as I finish them.

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/George-Washingtons-Farewell-Address-excerpt-with-reading-fluency-activities-6418443

https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/George-Washingtons-Farewell-Address-excerpt-2-reading-fluency-6425729

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