Subject Area(s): English - World Literature

Grade Level(s): 10

Format of Library of Congress media: Documents, Maps

Best Instructional Practices



Approximately eight weeks overall duration including a significant portion of fifteen 90- minute class periods. This subject writing lesson is designed to be integrated with the study of a novel, memoir or series of essays dealing with one or more of the following topics: immigration/moving; family traditions; themes of: alienation/isolation, honoring the historical past, tolerance of the atypical or struggle with self; and archetypes of the lonely orphan looking for a home, the misfit, outsider/outcast.

Lesson Summary

This lesson introduces students to the concept of documenting ordinary life in detail through observation and interview. After reading several interviews and conducting practice interviews, students will interview a recent immigrant to the United States. They will conduct background research of their subject's home country to enhance their contextual understanding. Students will use their research and interview notes and peer review to write and revise a profile of their interview subject. Students will submit their profile to the Library of Congress Interview with Today's Immigrants site to share their knowledge with others.

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All of the materials used in this lesson plan are available for downloading as PDF Files and PowerPoint files, as appropriate. PDF Files can be viewed with the free Adobe Reader.

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