What are the Project Guidelines?

Overview, History, Art, and Personal History



Women Leading the Way is a class project geared to encourage interdisciplinary collaboration between history, English or ELA, and art teachers. In it, students will explore the history of the Women’s Suffrage Movement through the struggles and achievements of the extraordinary pioneers who made significant and lasting contributions to Human Rights in United States and around the globe.

Students will learn the difference between suffragists and their radical sisters — the suffragettes. They will connect their own family stories to history, study the art of portraiture and reflect personally on the project. They will design a poster on which their work will be displayed at the end of the project.

Five Steps


STEP 1 — HISTORY

RESEARCH AND BIOGRAPHY WRITING OF AN HISTORICAL SUFFRAGE CAMPAIGNER



Project Guidelines Step 1

Students will research one of the women depicted in the painting Women Leading the Way: Suffragists & Suffragettes; alternatively, they may choose to research a female suffrage campaigner from their own state who is not represented in the painting. They will be challenged to think critically in order to write a revealing biographical essay of that person's life and her contribution to the advancement of women's voting rights or human rights. They will cross-reference primary source material carefully, to do so.

Three areas of biographical research should be considered: Biography, Context and Contribution. All content, to be organically meshed, will run from 500 to 750 words in length.

FORMAT OPTIONS +


STEP 2 — ART

CREATE A PORTRAIT OF YOUR SUFFRAGE CAMPAIGNER



Project Guidelines Step 2

Using drawing techniques, collage, photomontage, sculpture, painting or digital media, each student will create a portrait of the suffrage campaigner they research.

All artwork must be sized to fit on a poster with the three essays.  The final poster dimensions must be 29 inches tall by 23 inches wide.


STEP 3 — ENGLISH / ELA

CREATE A PERSONAL HISTORY



Project Guidelines Step 3FIND: Through personal interviews and documentation – such as photographs, letters, journals, oral history and artifacts – students will research the first woman who was granted or denied the right to vote within their own family, and summarize her life story, along with her sentiments at the time. If it is not possible to find the first woman who was granted or denied the right to vote in their own family, students may choose a subject outside of their family.

WRITE HER STORY: Connect family stories to history. In telling her story, students should consider the historical context of that family member's experience, and try to compare it with their own. Essays should run 300 to 400 words in length.

REFLECT: Each student will write a personal, reflective essay on their experience of having researched these extraordinary women, and the value of connecting their own family experiences to history. Reflections should address why voting matters at all levels: local, state and federal. Essays should run 250 to 350 words in length.


STEP 4 — ART

CREATE A PORTRAIT OF THE FIRST WOMAN TO VOTE IN YOUR FAMILY



Project Guidelines Step 4Using drawing techniques, collage, photomontage, sculpture, painting or digital media, each student will create a portrait of the woman in their family they choose to write about.

All artwork must be sized to fit on a poster with the three essays.  The final poster dimensions must be 29 inches tall by 23 inches wide.


STEP 5 — ART / HISTORY / ENGLISH

DESIGN A POSTER



Project Guidelines Step 5In addition to the National Poster Exhibition, each school may hold a show of their students' work in their local community.

A poster template will be provided for the National Poster Exhibition, to be held in March 2020. (Schools may use that template for the local exhibition of their students' work, or feel free to display the work differently.)

Using the poster template, each participating class will personalize it by creating a design that best represents the values of their institution. The design can be planned as a contest within each school. The layout of the essays, the artwork and school logo will be the responsibility of the students and leaders of the project within the school.  The final poster dimensions must be 29 inches tall by 23 inches wide.  To view sample poster layouts, please scroll down to the bottom of this page.



Poster Samples

Get Inspired — Create Your Own