Many of the records available on Ancestry, including census records accessible to students, help us to explore the personal histories and stories of individuals in the past. They speak to the theme of identity—the many factors, both personal and social, that make us who we are. The larger project of genealogy, too, searches for the roots of our own identities in the stories of our ancestors. These resources introduce the theme of identity as a lens for both understanding ourselves and engaging with the stories of others, including historical figures.
Use this graphic tool to help students consider the many factors that shape their own identity and that of groups, nations, and historical and literary figures.
Students will identify social and cultural factors that help shape our identities by reading and analyzing a short story and then creating their own personal identity charts.
This lesson provides an opportunity for students to reflect on and share how names reflect identity. Please note that students can still complete all lesson Activities even if they do not watch the referenced video “Becoming American: The Chinese Experience (Part 1)”.
This 6-lesson unit explores important themes related to personal and national identity in the United States.
Learn about identity charts and how they can be used to reflect on what factors have helped shape their identity.