Skip to contentContribute to ReadWriteThink / RSS / FAQs / Site Demonstrations / Contact Us / About Us



Contribute to ReadWriteThink

ReadWriteThink couldn't publish all of this great content without literacy experts to write and review for us. If you've got lessons plans, videos, activities, or other ideas you'd like to contribute, we'd love to hear from you.



Professional Development

Find the latest in professional publications, learn new techniques and strategies, and find out how you can connect with other literacy professionals.



Did You Know?

Your students can save their work with Student Interactives.

More more

HomeClassroom ResourcesLesson Plans

Lesson Plan

"Licensed" to Drive: Old West Figures

E-mail / Share / Print This Page / Print All Materials (Note: Handouts must be printed separately)


"Licensed" to Drive: Old West Figures

Grades 6 – 10
Lesson Plan Type Standard Lesson
Estimated Time Four 50-minute sessions
Lesson Author

Patrick Striegel

Patrick Striegel

Tolono, Illinois


National Council of Teachers of English



Featured Resources

From Theory to Practice



Students research Old West figures using both electronic and print sources.  They then use an online tool to compile and organize reading notes, research, and related ideas.  The information that is gathered is then presented in a student-constructed driver's license that includes who, what, when, where, and why they are important in United States history. This activity offers an alternative to the traditional research paper as well as an opportunity for students to share their projects with their classmates.

back to top



back to top



Traditionally, students end a unit of study by writing a research paper. While this is a good way for students to summarize what they have learned, it may not be the most interesting. Beyond that, it frequently results in summarization and rote repetition rather than deep critical thinking. In this lesson plan, students go through the research process, but will take that information and turn it into a driver’s license. This allows students to express their knowledge in a different way.  In English Journal, Miriam Karis Cronin says, “Interdisciplinary assignments readily provide students with ways to access new ideas through the use of a variety of learning styles.”  This project will allow your students to prove their knowledge in a different and creative way.

Further Reading

Cronin, Mariam Karis. “Rejecting Senseless Things: Promoting Differentiation.English Journal 92 (March 2003): 47-53.

back to top