Friday, May 22, 2015

All About Me--an Autobiography

published on: 2/28/2003

Contributing Teacher(s): Donna Engeman

Subject Area: Communication Arts/Writing/Research

Grade Range: Upper Elementary (4-5)

Materials Needed:

  • sample autobiographies
  • attached worksheets
  • Extension materials listed below

Objective: Students will write their own autobiography

Process Standards:

  • Goal 2.1 plan and make written, oral and visual presentations for a variety of purposes and audiences
  • Goal 2.2 review and revise communications to improve accuracy and clarity

Content Standards:

  • Communication Arts 1. Speaking and writing standard English (including grammar, usage, punctuation, spelling, ...)
  • Communication Arts 4. Writing formally (such as reports, narratives, essays) and informally (such as outlines, notes)

    Time Allowance: one week

    Description: Students will write their own autobiography.

    Classroom Component:

    Anticipatory Set: Teacher will introduce "autobiographies" by bringing in or discussing some autobiographies that students may wish to read throughout the unit. Instructional Input: Provide instruction on autobiographies. Check for Comprehension/Modeling: Teacher will randomly call on students after they have conferred with a partner and write responses to the following on the board.

  • In your own words, "What is an autobiography?"  story of a person's life written by that person
  • What kinds of information do autobiographies include?  when and where born, live, facts about family and friends, things they have or want to do
  • What three parts of your life should your autobiography include?  past, present, future
  • Instructional Input: Discuss sample autobiographies (Keep samples from year to year of previous classes) Check for Comprehension: Ask students questions following example.

  • Which part of this person's life have they described?  past
  • What other events might he/she have written about?  milestones such as walking, talking, etc., present events, future plans
  • Guided Practice: Practice writing one paragraph of an autobiography together. Independent Practice:

  • Complete "Prewrite" worksheet to organize their own autobiography.
  • Students write own autobiography. Pass out and explain scoring guide for completed autobiography due at the end of the unit.
  • Closure: Ask for volunteers to share what they have written so far.


    Organization Sheet
    Prewrite List at least five things you would be interested in writing about your past. List at least five things you could write about yourself now in the present. List at least five things you would like to do with your life in the future. For your autobiography, choose enough ideas from above to write about your past, present, and future. Include an introductory paragraph and summary paragraph with your paper.


    Name: ____________________
    Autobiography Composition In this unit we have been learning about autobiographies. You know that an autobiography can cover a person's whole life. Sometimes, though, an autobiography covers only certain parts of a person's life. Imagine that you have been asked to write your own autobiography. Choose an event from your past, present, and future to write about. Include in your autobiography an introductory paragraph and a summary paragraph. Remember to support your paragraphs with 3-5 details. Use correct punctuation, capitalization, and spelling. Components Due Prewrite and Organizing WS 1st Draft Editing Draft Proofreading Draft Final Copy Optional: Book/Illustrations


    Name: ____________________
    Scoring Guide Autobiography Next Top Ten Autobiographer Next Honorable Mention Autobiographer Next Budding Autobiographer 15 10 5 Composition: Punctuation: Capitalization: Spelling: Components:
    5 paragraphs included: Intro., past, present, future, summary At least past, present, future paragraph included Fewer than 3 paragraphs included
    5 or fewer errors total 6-10 errors total more than 10 errors
    5 or fewer errors total 6-10 errors total more than 10 errors
    5 or fewer errors total 6-10 errors total more than 10 errors
    All 5 components turned in: prewrite/organization WS, 1st draft, editing draft, proofreading draft, final copy Any 3-4 components turned in Fewer than 3 components turned in
    Total Points: ________/75      Grade ________


    Extension Autobiography in a Box Materials:

    • box (shoe or similar size)
    • construction, wrapping, or tissue paper
    • scissors
    • glue
    • crayons, markers, colored glue, and/or paint
    • photos, magazine cutouts, paper scraps, fabric, etc. (for decoration)


  • Cover the box with paper. Cover the lid separately so that the lid can be removed.
  • Add your name on the outside of the box and then decorate the box as you would like. Be sure that the box says something about you.
  • Fill the completed box with small items, photos, and drawings that tell about you and your life. The items in the box should be meaningful and special for you.

  • For additional information contact :
    Donna Engeman
    Henry Elem.
    (660) 885-5585

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