Living in the Past

Social Studies Activity

In this activity, students research family life of long ago and present their findings in a variety of ways.



  1. Have students form "family" groups. Then ask each group to choose a time in the near or distant past when their family settled in America. They also need to choose a country of origin. Each member of a group then assumes the identity of one member of the family. (A choice need not depend on the gender of the student.)

  2. Students research their choices and make a presentation about their lives. Examples of presentations:

  3. Whatever the presentation, students should try to include information about as many of these aspects of life as they can:


Students may enjoy sharing their presentations with other classes. As part of the presentation, have students do historical role-playing in costume. If possible, students talk about their lives and answer questions about it, always staying in character.

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