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Wisconsin for Kids and By Kids

Grade(s): 6, 7, 8

Format(s): Children's book

Subject(s): English Language Arts, Social Studies, Visual Arts

Project Overview: 

This book celebrating the people and places of Wisconsin was created by students at the Winnequah Middle School in Monona, Wisconsin, as a way to introduce elementary school students to unique features of the state. Because elementary schools in the state were required to cover Wisconsin history, this book met a genuine need and connected to a purchasing audience.

To create this professional quality book, students extensively researched the history of people, places and events as well as the current information about their state. Students also worked with local experts, including a professional illustrator, historians and journalists. All facts were checked for historical accuracy by outside experts.

All of the writing and illustrations are student originals. Students went through many rounds of drafting and rewriting/redrawing, through peer, teacher and outside expert feedback. Over 500 students contributed to the creation of the book.

This book was professionally produced, has an ISBN number, and was sold to schools throughout the state. Proceeds from the sale of the book went to literacy programs at the school. 

How This Project Can Be Useful: 

  • Exemplifies a useful product with an authentic audience
  • A project model that could be done in any state, with a genuine audience
  • Simple format, compelling visual presentation
  • Represents the work of over 500 students - a multi-class, multi-grade, whole school production
  • Demonstrates high quality work produced through an ongoing and extensive process of critique and revision
  • Strong artwork that retains an expressive student hand. See the illustration of Dan Jansen on page 20, the portrait of Harry Houdini on page 14 and the drawing of Native Americans on page 52
  • An appealing and engaging product – a professional quality layout and production - and still contains the look and feel of real student work
  • Shows a product that required extensive research, through collecting and collating multiple sources of information
  • The writing of a book for a younger audience allowed these students to succinctly demonstrate their understanding of the content

Common Core State Standards

Standard Long Term Learning Target
W.6.3
  • I can write narrative texts about real or imagined experiences using relevant details and event sequences that make sense.
W.6.4
  • I can produce clear and coherent writing that is appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.
W.6.5
  • With support from peers and adults, I can use a writing process to produce clear and coherent writing.
W.7.3
  • I can write narrative texts about real or imagined experiences using relevant details and event sequences that make sense.
W.7.4
  • I can produce clear and coherent writing that is appropriate to task, purpose and audience.
W.7.5
  • With support from peers and adults, I can use a writing process to ensure that purpose and audience have been addressed.
W.8.3
  • I can write narrative texts about real or imagined experiences using relevant details and event sequences that make sense.
W.8.5
  • With support from peers and adults, I can use the writing process to ensure that purpose and audience have been addressed.
W.8.8
  • I can use a standard format for citation.
L.6.3
  • I can maintain consistency in style and tone when writing and speaking.
L.7.3
  • I can express ideas with precision.
L.8.1
  • I can use correct grammar and usage when writing or speaking.
L.8.2
  • I can use correct capitalization, punctuation and spelling to send a clear message to my reader.
L.8.3
  • I can intentionally use verbs in active and passive voice and in the conditional and subjunctive mood.
L.6.6
  • I can use resources to build my vocabulary.
L.7.6
  • I can use resources to build my vocabulary.
L.8.6
  • I can use resources to build my vocabulary.
W.8.9
  • I can use evidence from informational texts to support analysis, reflection and research.
W.8.4
  • I can produce clear and coherent writing that is appropriate to task, purpose and audience.
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