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Lesson Plan

My Life/Your Life: A Look at Your Parents' Past

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Grades 6 – 8
Lesson Plan Type Standard Lesson
Estimated Time Four 60-minute sessions
Lesson Author

Maureen Carroll

Pleasanton, California


International Literacy Association



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From Theory to Practice



In this lesson, students explore what their parents' lives were like when they were in middle school. They examine the interview process and identify effective interviewing techniques. They then conduct interviews with their parents and write imaginary diary entries describing events that may have occurred in their parents' lives when they were in middle school. As a final project, students create a “Day in the Life” skit that captures the differences and similarities between their lives and their parents' school experiences. Preparation for the skit also involves using web resources to add a historical context to the dramatic scene.

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  • Interactive Venn Diagram: Using this feature, students can easily compare and contrast aspects of their parents’ lives with their own lives.
  • Tell Me All About It! Interview Sheet: This handout provides students with a basic set of questions that will help them learn more about their parents’ pasts, as well as giving them topics to analyze their own lives.

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Carroll, M. (2004). Cartwheels on the keyboard: Computer-based literacy instruction in an elementary classroom. Newark, DE: International Reading Association.

  • Using the Internet as a learning resource can be highly motivating for developing literacy learners.

  • There is no one best way to incorporate computers into the literacy classroom. Instead, teachers should use computers to enhance their instructional goals.

  • Computer use is about discovery of the ways language works and what students can do with language as they pursue both intellectual and social goals.


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