The Liberty Bell Rings for Freedom

The Liberty Bell Rings for Freedom lesson plan

Ring bells for freedom with this 3-D replica of a national symbol. What national treasure is important to you?

  • 1.

    Invite students to research a well-known national symbol, either contemporary or historic. Why is it important? We chose the Liberty Bell, which is on display in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Here’s how to make a paper bell that includes a surprise ringer.

  • 2.

    To replicate the Liberty Bell, students draw a big bell with Crayola Washable Markers on Construction Paper. Grand Canyon might be just the right color. Be sure to include the crack in the bell! Maui Sunset or Yosemite Campfire might contrast beautifully.

  • 3.

    Add large rectangular tabs on each side. Cut out around the bell and tabs.

  • 4.

    Students draw other bell parts such as the clapper and yoke, which is made of elm. Cut a narrow oval at the bottom of the bell so the clapper can peek through. We used Caribbean Current for accents. Drawings look so real with True to Life tri-color tips!

  • 5.

    Fold each tab evenly twice to make pop-outs. Glue the folded flap to a contrasting color of construction paper. Glue other pieces where they belong. Glue the background to cardboard so the project is sturdy.

  • 6.

    String yarn through the opening of a jingle bell. Glue the ends behind the paper bell. Air-dry the glue.

  • 7.

    Celebrate any patriotic occasion by gently ringing the Liberty Bell. Students share the information they learned about national symbols with classmates.

Standards

  • LA: Read and comprehend informational texts, including history/social studies, science, and technical texts, at the high end of the grade level text complexity band independently and proficiently.
  • LA: Conduct short research projects that use several resources to build knowledge through investigation of different aspects of a topic.
  • LA: Report on a topic or text, tell a story, or recount an experience with appropriate facts and relevant, descriptive details, speaking clearly at an understandable pace.
  • SS: Give examples of the role of institutions in furthering both continuity and change.
  • SS: Describe ways in which language, stories, folktales, music, and artistic creations serve as expressions of culture and influence behavior of people living in a particular culture.
  • SS: Identify and use various sources for reconstructing the past, such as documents, letters, diaries, maps, textbooks, photos, and others.
  • SS: Use appropriate resources, data sources, and geographic tools to generate, manipulate, and interpret information.
  • VA: Intentionally take advantage of the qualities and characteristics of art media, techniques, and processes to enhance communication of experiences and ideas.
  • VA: Integrate visual, spatial, and temporal concepts with content to communicate intended meaning in artworks.
  • VA: Describe and place a variety of art objects in historical and cultural contexts.
  • VA: Use subjects, themes, and symbols that demonstrate knowledge of contexts, values, and aesthetics that communicate intended meaning in artworks.

Adaptations

  • Possible classroom resources include: Celebrate America: A Picture Books of America's Greatest Symbols by Anastasia Suen; The Liberty Bell by Mary Firestone; Our American Flag by Mary Firestone; The White House by Mary Firestone; The Lincoln Memorial (American Symbols & Their Meanings) by Hal Markovitz; You Wouldn't Want to Be a Worker on the Statue of Liberty!: A Monument You'd Rather Not Build by John Malam
  • Organize a class field trip to visit a community or state landmark or symbol. Prior to the visit, students brainstorm questions that they would like to investigate while on the trip. After the visit, students post learning to a class blog.
  • Encourage students to investigate songs or poems that are connected to our national symbols. Students analyze the meaning of these lyrical scripts and share their analysis with classmates.
  • Challenge students to create a symbol appropriate to represent their school. What connection does the symbol have to their school community? Students also develop a motto to accompany their symbol. Create a 3-D model of the symbol using Crayola Model Magic. Also consider writing a poem or lyrics of an original song that represents your school community.