Missing Pages!

Lesson Plan


Grade Level

Middle School

Author Info


Type of Lesson


Type of Project (Individual/Group/Both)



60-90 minutes

Challenge Question

It has been discovered that all of the new history textbooks have a missing page about the Declaration of Independence! It is going to be up to you to create a new page to fill in the blanks, otherwise future students will not be able to learn about the Declaration of Independence!


Students will collaborate with 1-2 partners to develop a replacement for the missing textbook page. The students must be able to identify the most important events surrounding the Declaration of Independence, and be able to explain the context behind the document. Why was the Declaration written? Who drafted it? What important ideas were embodied in the document? What did it mean for different groups of Americans (Women, Enslaved African-Americans, Whites, etc)? What was the opinion of others (Delegates, the British, etc)? What did it do for the Revolutinary effort (Why was it important)? Students will create the page by using the image and text tools, and will then submit the final product.

Notes to Teacher

This challenge does not have to be completed online using the Sea of Liberty tools. If technology or internet access is not available, this may be completed on paper using different materials. A good idea would be to let the students actually read about the Declaration of Independence in their textbooks the class period before, so they have an idea of how much information they should include. Also, textbooks should not be used during this challenge! However any other information the students may have such as notes or articles should be allowed. You may also need to help students realize that not all of the information they may know about the Declaration will be able to fit. A sample textbook page of another topic may help students with their organization and design.


  1. Take a minute to ponder what you know about the Declaration of Independence. On a sheet of paper, write down the information that you believe is MOST important. Next, share with a partner and compare what you both have written. What is different about your lists and what is the same?
  2. Next, you and your partner need to agree on the information that you will put on your page. Remember that you have a very limited amount of space! What information can readers not be without when learning about the Declaration of Independence?
  3. Once your list is complete, take another sheet of paper and design your page. How will you place the text and images? Will you use colored or different sized fonts?
  4. Now you need to think about how you will present this important information. Remember, it must be organized and be easily read and understood by readers.
  5. Have your teacher look over your paper draft of your textbook page, and then create your own online! Click “Take Challenge” and use the images and tools at your disposal to enlighten future students!