Social Sundays: Trading cards for people and events from history

I like to give my students leeway to be creative in projects.  This past year in a project on the Constitutional Convention a student included a set of trading cards of figures from the constitutional convention.  She found a free  online program for creating them. My first reaction was what a cute extra for her project. When I examined them further I realized that each one actually took some thought about the individual and their ideals.  You can just we easily create cards for specific events.  This is an engaging activity to add variety to the classroom.

What's included in the card (it is slightly different for an event):
  • Background (name, time period, role, etc.)
  • Major events (key events in person's life)
  • Development (contributions, associations)
  • Memorable moments
  • Impression (student's impression of the person)

Students spend considerable time and thought in creating the cards.  

Here some ideas of how we have used trading cards to add variety in class:

  • Pre-writing exercise for essay or project. 
  • To prepare for debate or simulation in role play 
  • As an additional aspect of the role play project
  • As a preparation for an assessment
  • As an assessment for major events for a time period
We use these once or twice a year.

Social Sundays is a bi-weekly post sharing tips, ideas, resources, and products for teaching social studies.  If you have questions or think there is something I should share, you can leave me a message in the comments below or at the store in the question and answer section.  



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