Something Important Happened Here!
Teacher: Sylvia Martinez, Campbell High School

Overview: This assignment allows students to explore not only a portion of their history, but also shows them that a physical place has value and should be remembered.

Materials: Students should have access to one-time use cameras that ideally they could share.

Time: Approximately 20 minutes to introduce and then allow students a week to complete the assignment.

Instructional Sequence:

  1. Brainstorm what students think "place" means. What kind of images or things do they think of when they hear the word "place?"

  2. Discuss with them the idea that often a physical place holds a sentimental spot in our histories such as: the place you experienced your first kiss, a fall off of your bicycle, a fight, a time of crying about your parents' ensuing divorce, etc.

  3. Then, ideally, share with the class a picture from your history accompanied by a short paragraph explaining the significance of the place.

  4. Tell students to identify a place that plays a role in their life history. Have students brainstorm in groups or pairs.

  5. Students will take a picture of the place and write a paragraph explaining the significance of the place.

Evaluation:Through a presentation of their pictures, the teacher will look for a clear picture of the place and a clear effective explanation of the significance of the place to the student's history. A clear effective explanation includes but is not limited to describing the place, what event took place there, when the event took place, and why that moment is considered an important moment in their history.

Notes: This lesson can easily be adapted to a more in-depth project by having the students do a series of pictures or by having the students ask their parents for a "guided tour" (with a camera in hand) of their own important places. If working with their parents' stories and places, students could create a family history album.



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