Memoirs Teacher Resources
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The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien
In this online interactive reading comprehension activity, high schoolers respond to 13 multiple choice questions based on The Things They Carried. Students may submit their answers to be scored.
Did you know the word memoir is related to the word memory? It makes sense once you study the root word. This presentation starts with an introduction into memoirs and what characteristics will set a written memoir apart from the rest. This presentation focuses on how to write a powerful, telling memoir.
Review the essential elements of the memoir with a presentation that reminds writers of the structural options (chronological order, in medias res, etc.) available to them. Augment the slides with memoir models to ensure understanding.
Peer Editing Worksheet for Memoirs
Peer editors are guided by a series of prompts as they review a classmates’ memoir. Although designed as a memoir peer-editing worksheet, the form could be easily adapted to other types of writing.
Take the Last Train to Clarksville: Arkansas's Historic Depots and Railroad History
Students study the history of railroads and depots in Arkansas using websites and memoirs. They complete activities that explain how and why the railroads were built, and the different ways people used them.
Teaching Imagery with Gary Paulsen
Middle schoolers read excerpts from memoirs written by Gary Paulsen as examples of how to write a narrative piece. They identify figurative language used and then they write a memoir of their own that contains imagery and figurative language.
The Not-So-Famous Person Report
Students research a not-so-famous person and write a report about that person. They conduct interviews in order to find out information about their chosen person. Students share what they learned about the person with the class.
Varied Beginnings: Research Process / Narrative Writing Techniques
What's the best way to start a story? Learners write a memoir using effective openings. They research the process and work through a list of hooks to use in their writing. They use at least two hooks to begin their personal memoir. A great way to convey narrative writing techniques.
Family Tales: Lesson 7
Sixth graders listen to an author's family stories. In this memoir lesson, 6th graders listen to stories and discuss the author's memories. They consider the author's voice and then define the word memoir.
What is Your Story?
Learners listen to Picnic In October and Memory Coat to explore the concept of memoirs. They interview a family member and write a personal memoir that reflects their own family history.
Evaluating Eyewitness Reports
Students investigate various reports from the great Chicago fire of 1871 to evaluate the reliability of primary sources. They create their own eyewitness account of a modern disaster based on primary accounts.
Pupils discuss how writing is an important historical tool. They read writings from individuals and note how they have preserved history. They describe what those stories say about the communites they came from.
Introducing Literacy Elements in Nonfiction
Explore nonfiction writing with your class. They will identify elements in nonfiction by reviewing elements of fiction. Then they use biographies, memoirs, menus, Time for Kids, and text books to identify elements of nonfiction. They will respond to the text using thoughtful questions.
A Life in Freeze Frame
In this reading project worksheet, learners read a biography, autobiography, or memoir and think of the person's life as a movie. Students create a picture for scenes from that person's life. Learners include a caption or explanation describing the experience being framed and a quotation from the text.
In this famous person worksheet, students read a passage about Zhang Ziyi and then complete a variety of in-class and homework activities to support comprehension, including partner interviews, spelling, cloze, synonym matches, and scrambled sentences.
Lunsford Lane: A Slave in North Carolina Who Buys His Freedom
Young scholars use a guided reading activity to explore the life of Lunsford Lane, an entrepreneurial slave who bought his own freedom and recorded his memoirs. They write a speech from the point of view of Lunsford Lane.
Emotional Effects of World War One
Explore how World War One affected the world and changed the writings of poets and authors to create a new movement called Modernism. Identify how articles, memoirs, diaries, and poetry written after the war changed. Practice writing a poem in the Modernist format.
Auschwitz Episode Guide: Factories of Death
Young scholars examine Hitler's "Final Solution." They watch and discuss a PBS documentary, read handouts, conduct Internet research, and read and discuss a personal memoir.
"Let Me Sing A Carefree Song Once More:" Poetry of Hidden Children
Students read various poems dealing with hidden children during the Holocaust. Using the texts, they discuss the poems meaning with their classmates. They present their information to the class taking turns on who is speaking. They write their own poem using the information they gathered during the lesson.
Home: The Ties That Bind
Students read two novels, The Human Comedy and A Separate Peace and an autobiographical memoir, Farewell to Manzanar. They focus on the difficulties faced by the teenage protagonists in order to set up a connection between adolescence and war.