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1800's Newspaper. MOVIE REVIEW. Students will write a critique of a movie or theater production shown in the 1800’s. Summarize story line. Summarize main characters, plot, setting. Include opinion of movie or show – use thought of it at the time Give rating out of four stars.

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Students will write a critique of a movie

or theater production shown in the 1800’s


Summarize story line.

  • Summarize main characters, plot, setting.
  • Include opinion of movie or show – use thought of it at the time
  • Give rating out of four stars


Students will create their own newspaper advertisements featuring a product from the 19th Century.


Use persuasion in advertisements.

  • Authentic product or invention from 1800’s
  • Sufficient information –show what you learned
    • Description and cost of item
    • Picture of item
    • Sell it!!

Survey / Graphic

Students will create a graphic that shows ethnic information of a region of the U.S. during the 1800’s.


Choose a state or region of the U.S. during one decade (10 year span) of the 1800’s

  • Graphic shows the ethnic makeup of the region’s population at that time (ethnicity means French, Italian, English, German, etc)
  • If you find other data that is interesting, clear it with me before using in graph
  • Include a key if necessary
  • Clearly show your interpretation of the data.




Find a term that was commonly used in the 1800’s but may not be familiar today

  • Ask various people what they think the word means and record the answers
  • Select four for the final copy
  • Include name and response of those four only
  • Include the true meaning of the word



Students will write a short letter describing the benefits or detriments of an invention of the 1800’s.


A clear statement of your position

  • Include reasoning for your view
  • Choose topic for clear argument in short amount of space
  • Write it as a person living in the era
  • First and last name, town you live in – remember S.D. was not a state until 1889
  • Begin with “Dear Editor”


Students will write an interview of a 19th century person.


Write questions as if you are talking and answers as if given by the person

  • Avoid ‘yes’ o ‘no’ questions
  • Avoid generic / boring questions
  • Be creative / Find information you don’t know
  • You may use a tone in the answers that you have perceived through research (ex. Well-educated, Irish accent, slang)


Students will write a birth announcement about a 19th Century person.


Full name (first, middle, last)

  • Parents’ names (include mother’s maiden name if possible
  • Location of birth (town, state)
  • Date of birth
  • Older siblings – if any

Birth Announcement Example

Mary Martha Smith

A girl, Mary Martha, was born on Thursday, April 5, 1845 to Peter and Margaret (Johnson) Smith of Plainview, Kentucky. Mary joins her sister Anna and brother John at home.



Students will write a persuasive essay.


Research a person from the 1800’s

  • Tell why that person is important / unique / or worth knowing
  • Include a # of examples, facts, statistics
  • Remember that this is NOT a news article – it is a PERSUASIVE essay
  • Essay format / longer than letter
  • Include details about the person

Advice Column

Students will write about a problem they would like another to answer. Students will then respond to that problem.


Find a social problem of the 1800’s (gambling, prostitution, slave-selling, etc.)

  • Write to Dear Gabby about a specific issue that could be a problem for a person in the 1800’s
  • Use a creative name, not own
  • Respond thoroughly to problem
  • Be creative in problem and response
  • Humor with limits

News Feature

Students will write a news story based on an invention from the 1800’s.


Students will use Journalistic Questions

  • Peer Edit and Self Edit
  • Inform the public about an invention that just came out – write it in the time
  • Can include details of the inventor, the inventing process, the invention, and its uses
  • Remain objective – no opinions unless direct quote from observer


Students will write an obituary for a person who lived in the 1800’s.


Include details of birth / parents / etc.

  • Include details of person’s life – school, jobs, marriages, hobbies, activities, accomplishments
  • Details of death (optional)
  • Survivors – if any
  • Details about memorial or funeral service and burial
  • Include a picture

Sports Feature

Students will write a complete story about a sports-related topic or a past time of the 1800’s.


Full length story (include a draft and editing)

  • Topics: an athlete, a sport, a team, a past time, results of an event, description of an event, current sports issue
  • Story may be an account of a fictitious or real event that took place during this time