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Primary Sources & Lesson Plans
Student Activity Sheet for Speeches

SECTION 1: History Today

1. Think about a speech you recently read or heard.

2. What was the purpose of the speech?

3. How did the author/speaker support his or her case?

4. Did the speech affect your opinion about its subject matter?

5. Did the speech present any information that might mislead the listener or reader?

6. What value might this speech have to people in the future who want to understand our time? What mistaken impressions of our society might they form from this speech?

SECTION 2: Brainstorming

1. Write down everything you notice about the speech your teacher gave you.

2. If you have not already done so, be sure to note the:

a. topic of the speech

b. author or speaker’s opinion

c. nature of the argument

d. effectiveness of the argument

3. An individual can read a speech or listen to it. Does a speech have a different effect on the listener if it is heard rather than read?

4. What did this speech teach you about women, Jews, and America in the time period when it was given?

SECTION 3: Now that you know…

1. How did learning the context of the speech affect your understanding of the speech itself?

2. Most historical artifacts do not survive. Why do you think this one did?

3. What biases of yours affected your response to this speech?

4. How do you think the bias of the speaker (or author) of the speech affected its content?

5. Do you think this speech would have had a different effect in its own time if a man had given it?

6. How did this speech change or add to your knowledge of this time period and/or topic?

SECTION 4: Follow-up Activities

1. Write a persuasive speech on a topic important to you and deliver it to the class.

2. Re-write the historical speech as it might be written today and give it to your class.

3. Find another TYPE of primary source on the same topic in the Jewish Women’s Archive collection and compare them.

Document Study Sheets

Sermon given by Jewish woman, 1890

Speech at Hadassah convention, 1937

Observations about women’s Judaism, 1977


How to Cite This Page
Jewish Women's Archive. "JWA - Speeches - Student Activity Sheet for Speeches." <>.