Celebrating American Heroes
13 brief plays about significant historical figures, American heroes. They are written to be read aloud dramatically. In each play there are a few main characters and a chorus. The heroes are Betsy Ross and George Washington; Dolley Madison; Sacagawea; Harriet Beecher Stowe; Abraham Lincoln; Thomas Alva Edison; John Muir; Jackie Robinson; Jonas Salk; Robert Frost; Cesar Chavez; Astronauts Armstrong, Aldrin, and Collins; and Jaime Escalante.
Why These Plays Work
There is minimal preparation required.
The content is meaningful. Students learn about American history and culture while they learn the language.
The stories are upbeat and inspiring. The subjects of the plays are real heroes. All have achieved something and contributed to making this a better nation. All have had something to overcome.
The plays are excellent ways to introduce or reinforce specific social studies or history topics. They fit well in citizenship classes and are wonderful for holiday or multicultural celebrations. They are also an excellent complement to conversation, pronunciation, and speech classes because the students get the opportunity to practice the natural rhythm, stress, and intonation of the English language.
They are well suited for multilevel classes. The more proficient students enjoy the challenge of the speaking roles; the less confident get speaking practice as part of the chorus. Everybody shines.
The plays are a low-anxiety activity. There is nothing to memorize. The students get support by holding the script in their hands, and they can also be seated if they choose.
The follow-up activities and exercises in the Teacher's Guide are an excellent supplement to performing the play. The students can work at their own pace to complete them.
Other books by Anne Siebert
Heroes from American History
Plays for the Holidays