Create Your Own Women’s History Museum

Lesson Prepared By
Alexi Murry
Grade Level
6th
7th
8th
9th
Description

Students will research a woman/group of women. They will then find an object associated with their woman/group of women and create a museum exhibit.

Time

2-3 class periods and 1-2 nights of homework

Objective

Students will learn how to thoroughly research a topic and create a museum exhibit.

Procedures

Part One: Finding Primary Sources (Individually)

  1. One person per group will create a Google document to share with her fellow students.
  2. Each group will be assigned one of the Historical Topics/Time Periods listed below and will be given an accompanying list of five women from their respective time period:
    1. Historical Topic/Time Period
      1. Colonial Era
      2. Civil War & Reconstruction
      3. Progressive Era
      4. World War II
      5. Civil Rights
      6. Culture & Arts
      7. Sports
  3. Go to National Women’s History Museum:  Topics, Exhibits, or Biographies.
  4. Each individual will choose one of the five women from their groups historical topics /time period to research and will choose an artifact which best represents the historical importance of the woman.
    1. Individuals will incorporate their research into the Group’s shared Google document. ALL WORK SHOULD BE KEPT IN ONE DOCUMENT. 
  5. Artifacts can be researched and selected through the Smithsonian's Collections Website and can be searched by topic or object.
    1. Snip the image of the artifact into your group’s Google document
    2. Include information according to the Example below:

Part Two: Create an Exhibition (Group)

  1. Create a title for your exhibition such as “Women of Colonial America”
  2. As a group choose ONE of the artifacts to be used as the MAIN object of your time period. The object is an artifact from the time period; art, movie poster, letter, a flag, fashion ect.
    1. MAIN object will be a symbol of your whole exhibition, IT cannot be one of the women. It should be an artifact that connects the women.
    2. As a group look through the Smithsonian's Collection to find the MAIN object
  3. Create an information panel on your historical time period which represents a woman’s life at the time.
  4. Create a label for the MAIN OBJECT.

Part Three: Secondary Object (Individual)

  1. You will choose ONE of the five women to be your secondary object. 
  2. You must research her background and her historical importance.
  3. Include an artifact from the time that reflects her background and importance.
  4. You must include a picture of her.
  5. Create an information panel with label for your object.

Part Four: Exhibition

  1. As a group, print color photos of each of your objects (Secondary & Main)
  2. Print your labels and tombstones
  3. Back it with color paper
  4. Hang the objects, labels, and tombstones in the hallway.
    1. Optional: Have a “gallery opening” for students and parents


Group 1: Colonial and Revolutionary Era

Group 2: Civil War & Reconstruction

Group 3: Progressive Era

Group 4: World War II

Group 5: Civil Rights

Group 6: Culture & Arts

Assessment / Homework

Project Rubric

Category

5

4

3

0-2

Creativity/ Presentation value

Presentation is unique, different, or contains some creative and relevant elements that make the exhibition stand out.

Presentation creativity is above average and contains some distinct elements that are eye-catching.

Presentation creativity  is average

Creativity is significantly lacking, presentation is boring/ straightforward/ black and white

Neatness/

Consistency

Project is clean, well-constructed, and visually appealing.  Museum-quality presentation

Project is neat, with a minor mistake or two.  Might have a slight inconsistency with other group members’ projects, but nothing major.

Neatness is average, a few mistakes in presentation.  Project may be slightly inconsistent with that of other group members.

Project is sloppy, unclean, hard to make sense of, messy, etc.  Project is inconsistent with the design of other group members’ projects.

Dates and other essential information

Tombstone contains all dates and essential information about the artifacts.

Tombstone contains some essential information, but may be missing something that would have been helpful to understand the artifact

 

Dates and other essential information are missing or incorrect.

Significance

Writing clearly explains the significance of the woman in American History.

Writing explains the general significance of the woman, but spends too much time on basic factual information.

Writing relays basic factual information, but does not give the woman significance.

Writing is factually inaccurate, missing, or contains significant flaws.