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The Three People I Would Like to Invite for Dinner

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Keywords: Identity, Cultural Literacy, thinking skills, Research, Presentation
Subject(s): History, English/Language Arts, Social Studies, Photography, Technology, Social Skills, Art
Grades 7 through 9
School: Saint Catherine Laboure School, Harrisburg, PA
Planned By: Joreen Kelly
Original Author: Joreen Kelly, Harrisburg
The teacher asks the question, "Suppose you gave a dinner party for some very special guests, 3 people whom you consider to be worthy of admiration and respect because of who they are and what they have done. Who would you invite?"

The students will decide what a real hero is, what qualifications they believe make a someone a hero, and then will choose the three people they want to invite.

The first person must be an historical figure. The students must research this person to create the first part of a slideshow presentation that must include facts about the hero's life and accomplishments and include images, clipart, or photos. This should be a minimum of 4-5 slides.

The second person is a public figure who is contemporary, i.e. a person who has been alive during the student's lifetimes, even if they are now deceased. The students must find out about the lives and deeds of this person and make the second part of the slideshow.

For the third part, the students will choose someone they know personally e.g. a parent, grandparent, brother, sister, neighbor, friend, teacher, counselor, etc. who they look up to and believe have the qualifications of a hero. The students will use digital photography to take a photo of the person or bring a photo in to scan and incorporate it into the presentation.

After the students have created their project they will show the presentation to their classmates using a projector and explain why they feel these people have the personal qualities to be considered their heroes.
I have done this project with my 7th grade for several years and they really get into it. I'm amazed at the wonderful things they say about the third person they've chosen. These people have no idea how much they influence their young people and the children don't even realize it themselves until they think about it.
Cross-Curriculum Ideas
Social Studies -- researching the historical figure
Cultural Literacy -- researching the present for true heroes
Art -- some of the children create a dinner invitation to include in their Slideshow Title Slide
Cultural Identity -- many of my students who are minorities research heroes of their own culture. The other students can learn about the child's culture through the slideshow.
Materials: Social Studies, Flash/USB Drives, Batteries, Camera Bags, Point and Shoot, Mobile Labs, Slideshow
Other Items: 1 School site license for Clipart, $ 399.95 each, total of $399.95
1 Mobile digital camera lab, $ 3648.95 each, total of $3648.95
25 Tool Factory Slideshow software, $ 69.95 each, total of $1748.75