African-American Hall of Fame


  • Students will develop questions to guide an Internet research project.
  • Students will use print and nonprint sources to find the answers to their questions.
  • Students will create and deliver speeches telling why their subjects should be inducted into the Hall of Fame.
  • Students will share their findings in creative museum displays.


  • Reference materials
  • Internet access


  1. Spark interest in the topic of African-American heroes by displaying biographies, photographs, and artifacts concerning African Americans.
  2. Point out that "heroes" are not always famous people.
  3. Allow students to search through the Encyclopedia of Prominent African Americans.
  4. Have students do an Internet search for "African-American Heroes."
  5. After they have reviewed reference materials, ask students to choose an African-American hero about whom they would like to find more information.
  6. After they have chosen a person, help students create questions that will guide their research.
  7. Ask students to use the information they found to create a final product that has two separate parts – "induction speeches" that tell why particular people should be included in the Hall of Fame, and the displays for the Hall of Fame Museum.

    Displays could include (but are not limited to):
    • drawings, paintings, or other visual representations.
    • quotations, either written or on audiotape.
    • artifacts or models to represent accomplishments.
    • timeline to show important events in the person's life and in the era in which he or she lived.

  8. Encourage students to deliver their speeches and share their museum displays.

Standards Correlations

    National Education Technology Standards
  • are proficient in the use of technology.
  • use technology tools to enhance learning, increase productivity, and promote creativity.
  • use technology to locate, evaluate, and collect information from a variety of sources.

    National Council for the Social Studies
    Students will:

  • predict how data and experiences may be interpreted by people from diverse cultural perspectives and frames of reference.
  • apply an understanding of culture as an integrated whole that explains the functions and interactions of language, literature, the arts, traditions, beliefs and values, and behavior patterns.
  • compare and analyze societal patterns for preserving and transmitting culture while adapting to environmental or social change.
    Use the following rubric to evaluate students' work in completing this lesson.

    4 – Exemplary

    • creates clear questions to guide the research process.
    • critically analyzes online resources.
    • crafts a thorough and succinct induction speech.
    • creates a striking and unique museum display.

    3 – Competent

    • creates questions about a topic as a first step in the research process.
    • evaluates online resources.
    • delivers an induction speech that contains facts and supporting details.
    • creates a museum display that reflects the life of a hero and conveys the person's heroic traits.

    2 – Developing

    • lists questions with peer or teacher support.
    • is able to use resources that match research purposes.
    • delivers a speech that clearly supports a candidate.
    • creates a museum display as part of a group project or with teacher guidance.

    1 – Emerging

    • attempts to write questions about a research topic.
    • is able to locate basic reference materials in the library or on the Internet.
    • tells about the chosen hero with prompting and guidance.
    • completes some small part of a museum display.
Students collect information about African-American heroes and plan a Hall of Fame induction.
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