Day One: Using Textual Evidence to Analyze its Development of Voting Rights

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SWBAT identify and evaluate evidences in text to develop a theme on women's voting rights.

Big Idea

You got to fight for Your right to Vote!

Lesson Introduction

How is this lesson relative to students today? In the state of North Carolina, residents saw increased issues with participating in the voting process for our last presidential election. These issues mainly related to voter identification and voter fraud. Although students may not understand the effect of not being able to vote, they can start looking at the unfair nature of how not having your voice being heard can have a HUGE impact on things you get to do in life.

Bell Ringer: A Question

5 minutes

To connect students to this lesson, the following prompt will be placed on the whiteboard:

Define the word "suffrage." 

Students will respond to the statement in their notebooks. A list of student responses will be posted on the board so references can be made to each definition further along in the lesson.

Looking at Suffrage through Propaganda Posters

15 minutes

Propaganda is used as a form of communication to promote or publicize a particular political cause or point-of-view. To help students understand the history behind voting, we will start with looking at messages warned by the government on the right to vote during the Women's Suffrage Movement.

As students look at each Women’s Suffrage Propaganda poster, they will respond to the following questions in their notebooks

  • What do you see in each poster?
  • What images relate to the idea of women or suffrage?
  • How is each poster an example of propaganda? Does the overall message speak for or against suffrage? Use evidences from each poster to support your claim.


I will be surprised at what students fork up for their analysis on how each poster fits in the realm of propaganda. Both students and teachers can at times confuse persuasion and argument. This is even evident with propaganda and how both can be exhibited in the overall message that comes across to its viewers. As students respond to each poster, I will guide the pacing of the power point slides. After all slides have been viewed, the class will reconvene to share what was written in their notebooks. See a student response to understand behaviors during this particular this activity!

Looking at the fairness of Voting in a Text

20 minutes

We will shift our focus on voting to a literary work by Sojourner Truth. In this particular work, students look to textual evidences to understand the struggles many have had with gaining and sustaining the right to vote. In the late 1800's, women fought hard to gain freedoms and equality against men.

In the first interaction with "Ain't I a Woman," students will read the speech silently and think of a word that describes voting. In the next interaction, students will listen to the speech read aloud. This interaction with the text allows students to hear the impact the dialect and tone has on the central idea of the speech and the audience's reaction to what Truth wants for ALL WOMEN. 

We will end the lesson by deciding if voting (at this particular time period studied in the lesson) is fair. To understand how students feel, I will take a quick vote of hands that go up when asked if voting is fair or unfair.