Growing Files for Women's History

Research on local figures for a Women's History Trail includes investigations at local reference depositories. Students add photos, copies of primary source documents and old newspaper articles to their growing files. After presenting nominated candidates during a school assembly, they conduct a final selection campaign.

For more about Special #2 from
Walk Her Way Along a Women's History Trail
email Maria D'Itria , author and AT&T Teacher Disseminator.
Learning Standards
  • Gather information from a variety of sources.
  • Write well developed paragraphs using pre-writing, drafting, revising, editing, and publishing.
  • Take part in classroom discussions.
  • Study documents and primary sources.
  • Learn about the democratic process.
  • Classroom Activities
    Students conduct selection process by preparing biographies of each candidate and planning a school election. They:
    • Visit the local historical society and library and work with librarians and historians to obtain copies of old documents, articles, etc.
    • Inform the local newspaper and community organizations about the project. Call for additional nominees, anecdotes, and photos.
    • Keep up contacts and continue interviews.
    • Record progress for oral and written biographies on a Did I? Sheet.
    • Schedule and plan a schoolwide assembly.

  • Present candidates and explain voting process at assembly. Explain that final selections should include women from diverse eras, occupations, and backgrounds.
  • Create posters, pamphlets, and written biographies of candidates for two week Women's History Trail campaign.
  • Prepare ballots; plan and schedule voting procedures for final selection.
  • Distribute, collect, and tally ballots on selection day.
  • Report results to school newspaper, local newspapers, parents, and community.
  • Community Activities
    The community at large contributes to a local Women's History Trail organized and researched by students.
    Students develop insights on how women struggled to enter the professional world by researching candidates' occupations and hearing guests describe their own careers.
    Materials for letters, stamps, copies of newspaper articles and documents, photographs, historical maps, Did I? Sheet , poster materials, ballots
    Students update files and write biographies with Claris Works, use Print Shop for posters and invitations and continue to research women on the Internet.
    Teacher marks oral and written presentations. Students and teacher evaluate files and products: ballots, letters, flyers, and posters.

    Web Sites
    Students find information at the National Women's Hall of Fame
    Boston Women's Heritage Trail