Historical Fiction Teacher Resources
Find Historical Fiction educational ideas and activities
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American Historical Fiction Journal
Eleventh graders research how cultural change, technological advances, and social customs of the 20th century are depicted in American literature. Based on this research, they write an original work of American historical fiction.
Genre Lesson: Historical Fiction
Take a trip through history with a lesson plan on historical fiction. With instructions for games, reading activities, and literary analysis assignments, this resource would be a great addition to any reading unit with a historical fiction novel. The lesson plan is designed for The Watsons Go to Birmingham - 1963, but you could modify the instructions for any historical fiction novel.
Reading Historical Fiction: Stone Fox
Third graders discuss purposes for reading historical fiction. In this Stone Fox lesson plan, 3rd graders read the story and research a designated topic related to the book. Students also view film and use a Venn Diagram to offer text/film comparisons.
Historical Fiction: A Wealth of Interpretations
Historical fiction becomes a platform for exploring different perspectives. The class makes predictions based on illustrations, completes Venn diagrams to compare and contrast differing points of view, and to think about how characters change. The unit culminates with kids writing extra chapters from the point of view of the main character to extend the end of the stories. Other extension activities include using photography and music. Assessment ideas are listed.
Students discover how to identify historical fiction. For this historical fiction lesson, students read the story Meet Addy: An American Girl by Connie Porter. Students listen to the first chapter of the book read aloud. Students list statements on a chart that are facts. Students then read the next chapter independently. Students make a list of the characters from the book and things they know are fiction.
Puerto Rican Migration Historical Fiction Story
Students investigate the experience of Puerto Rican immigrants to America. In this immigration lesson, students research the challenges that Puerto Rican immigrants faced and then write historical fiction selections that reflect their findings.
Historical Fiction Book Talks
After each learner reads a historical fiction book of their choice, they prepare a book talk audio podcast to encourage other classes to read it. They cover characters, plot points (without giving away the conflict's resolution), and the setting. Why should others read this book?
Historical Agency in History Book Sets (HBS)
Study historical events by combining the study of historical fiction and non-fiction. Learners read about true past events in historical fiction novels and then research non-fiction accounts of the same events. What are some differences they find? Compare and contrast the similarities and differences. Looking for an activity to extend this lesson plan? Assign each writer a specific event, and have them write a journal entry or two about the event as if they were living during that time period.
Learning About Fiction Genres in the Elementary School Library
Teaching about fiction genres can be challenging. The lesson here, designed for library media specialists, offers a fun way to do it. In the lesson, learners visit the library and learn about the different types of fiction through book talks, participating in reader's theater, playing games, and visiting a "genre museum" in the library media center. By the end of the sessions, pupils will be experts on fiction genres, knowing the difference between mysteries, historical fiction, realistic fiction, science fiction, fantasy, and horror. A great teaching idea.
The first pioneers faced many obstacles on their journey west. Middle schoolers read different historical fiction texts (ideas are provided), make connections, and complete a detailed packet (included). Reading guides, journal ideas, and rubrics are all provided. A very comprehensive resource!
Through learning about the Oregon Trail and Nebraska, learners evaluate the elements of historical fiction. Coming with a comprehensive bibliography, this lesson has your class learn about settlers traveling along the Oregon Trail, analyze their experiences, and discuss the characteristics of historical fiction.
A Second Visit To Old Sturbridge Village-The Story Tour
Students conduct research on 1830s families and early New England culture. They conduct research on the Old Sturbridge Village website, participate in an online chat with a costumed interpreter, and continue to develop possible plots to use for writing a historical fiction piece.
Hiroshima and Nagasaki: Still Teaching Lessons To This Generation
Discuss Laurence Yep's novella, Hiroshima, to inspire future historical fiction writers.
The Long Way Home
When did your ancestors arrive in the United States of America? Did they come in through Ellis Island? Middle school learners research immigration and Ellis Island. They write a piece of historical fiction based on what it would have been like to emigrate to the U.S. through Ellis Island in the early 1900s.
Courage in Chaos
Students read and discuss the historical fiction novel by Lois Lowery, Number the Stars. They further investigate survivor and rescuer stories from the Holocaust in order to make a class presentation.
Creative Writing Activity
Eleventh graders create an illustrated historical fiction paper written in the first person as if they lived in North Carolina during the time period from 1780-1800. They used the Eastern North Carolina Digital Library and a timeline of American history.
Music-Recreation and Function: The Civil War Soldiers Experience
Students take a closer look at the American Civil War In this literature instructional activity, students read Soldier’s Heart: Being the Story of the Enlistment and Due Service of the Boy Charley Goddard in the First Minnesota Volunteer by Gary Paulsen. Students complete comprehension, literature circle, character development, and vocabulary activites as they read the historical fiction novel about the American Civil War.
Women in History
First graders explore the genre of historical fiction. In this literature lesson plan, 1st graders understand the characteristics of historical fiction. Students read Amelia and Eleanor.Students discuss the accomplishments of these two women. After reading, teacher elicits how we know this book is fiction rather than fact.
A Comparison of Indentured Servants and Slaves
Sixth graders examine and compare the lives of slaves and indentured servants using primary sources and the historical fiction books, "Molly Bannaky and Barefoot." They analyze and compare advertisements for runaway slaves. Students discuss how slaves were treated as property that had a high econmic value.
Drawing Conclusions from Historical Fiction
Students read historical fiction. In this drawing conclusions lesson plan, students learn how to draw conclusions from text, specifically historical fiction. Students read Molly's Pilgrim and complete a graphic organizer where they answer comprehension questions.