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.