An Immigrant's Story

Grade Levels: 8 - 12


  • Students will write within a historical context by creating a character and writing about his/her experience as an immigrant.


  • Reference materials


  1. Discuss the intent of the historical fiction genre. Some questions to consider are: Why do writers employ this genre so often? What is the typical balance between history and fiction in this genre? What are some famous examples of the genre (Shakespeare, Hawthorne's Scarlet Letter, The Great Gatsby, Gone With the Wind)? What historical facts did you learn from reading these works?

  2. Give students parameters for developing a character, as governed by your curriculum. Parameters may include: country of origin, year of immigration, destination, age, level of education or skills, language, solo traveler or with a family, etc.

  3. Explain the assessment criteria for this assignment. Some criteria to consider are:

    • Degree to which the reader can empathize with the immigrant in the story.

    • Accuracy and usage of historical information.

    • Writing skills.

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