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Decide on your own personal words to live by after studying slogans and mottoes used by modern and historic leaders.
U.S. President Harry S. Truman went from being a store clerk to president during a trying time in American history. Invite student groups to find out about President Truman and how the course of U.S. history changed during the Truman presidency. Provide a variety of text and electronic resources for students to view during this investigation.
A motto on Truman's White House desk reminded him of what was important and showed others what motivated his decisions. His motto was "The Buck Stops Here." (On the other side, the sign said, "I'm from Missouri.") What do you think that motto meant for him and his administration? Research this and other famous mottoes such as "liberté, égalité, fraternité." What other convictions guide leaders' decisions?
Ask students what ideas drive their actions and behaviors. What qualities are important to your family? What are your religious beliefs? How do you make important decisions? Invite students to continue this discussion with friends or family. Students will sum up their own life motto in a one-line slogan similar to these famous mottoes.
To make a motto sign for their desks, students fold a rectangular piece of heavy paper such as oak tag in half, and then in half again. Ask children to use Crayola® Colored Pencils or Color Sticks to write their motto in large, fancy letters on both sides of the middle sections. Decorate the words with symbols.
Students fold the two end sections underneath to form a standing triangle. Seal with a Crayola Washable Glue Stick.
Mottoes are now ready to be displayed. Ask students to present their selected mottoes to classmates and provide some insight as to why they chose those particular mottoes.
This powerful diorama pays tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebrate his historic civil rights speech on the step
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