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Activity Overview


This activity can be used as either an introductory assignment or an exit assignment at the end of the unit. Students will interpret excerpts from the Emancipation Proclamation and articulate what each excerpt means to them. By allowing students to put the document into their own words and formulate their opinion or stance on specific excerpts, you will be able to see where students are at (great for meeting them in the middle for the rest of the unit). In turn, students will be better prepared for class discussions and further analysis activities.


Extended Activity

For an extended activity, have students take their personal interpretations and debate the success of the Emancipation Proclamation. Have students organize their ideas using a grid storyboard to better present their positions. They are to defend their position and interpretations with facts and logic.

Lesson Plan Reference

Grade Level 9-12

Difficulty Level 2 (Reinforcing / Developing)

Type of Assignment Individual

Common Core Standards
  • [ELA-Literacy/RI/9-10/9] Analyze seminal U.S. documents of historical and literary significance (e.g., Washington's Farewell Address, the Gettysburg Address, Roosevelt's Four Freedoms speech, King's "Letter from Birmingham Jail"), including how they address related themes and concepts.


Template and Class Instructions

(These instructions are completely customizable. After clicking "Use This Assignment With My Students", update the instructions on the Edit Tab of the assignment.)



Student Instructions

Create a storyboard that describes what the Emancipation Proclamation means to you.

  1. Click "Start Assignment".
  2. In the first column, type in the quotes/excerpts you selected.
  3. In the second column, describe what the quote means to you.
  4. Create illustrations for each cell using appropriate scenes, characters, and items.
  5. Save and submit your storyboard.


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Emancipation Proclamation





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