Tuesday, February 04, 2014

American Revolution Hanger People

Last year when I was hunting around for ideas to improve my American Revolution folder, I found this great blog post from Teaching in Room 6 where she detailed tons of fun ideas to enhance her curriculum. One of the things that she talked about was creating a Hanger Person. Her students picked one of the famous names from the period of turmoil as those colonists broke free from that pesky King George III. They wrote a report about their person and then went a step further and created a little visual display of their person using a hanger as the body shape.

I printed off a bunch of biographies from Mr. Nussbaum's site on American Peoples. His site is AWESOME! Seriously, if you haven't been there, RUN. Tons of great ideas and free activities to help you out. He covers all of the topics, so check it out. I laid the choices out on the floor and let them pick someone they were interested in.

My students were told to really concentrate on the period of their person's life that covered the years of the Revolution. That way they could narrow down their topic. I gave them a graphic organizer to use to help organize their notes. I had this great sheet that helped them break down the introductory paragraph better. I will look tomorrow to see if I can find it. But it basically had them focusing on their hook and summarizing the rest of their paper without giving too much away.

After the writing was done, I let them at the hangers. I have a ton of scrapbook paper from my previous creative life that they can rifle through to make their people. The tricky part was trying to get the head to stay on the hooky part of the hanger. Since the shoulders went over the upper edges of the triangular shape, I had to take the tape dispenser away from them and show them how to fold over a piece of paper to glue down on the back of the head with the hanger sandwiched between.

I had to send a few back to the drawing board to make their people 'more authentic'. They were starting to look like just some random person. I had them think what they could add to their person to show who they were. That's when they came up with adding in the Declaration and a quill pen for Mr. Jefferson. One of my girls added a huge snowball for Crispus Attucks from the Boston Massacre. Much better!

The project came out great. I just wish my class could complete these things a little faster. They take a long time for everything. I'm hoping my lesson on Jon Scieska's Battle Bunny will really spark some engines to race tomorrow!

Here's a shot of a few of my hanger people:

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