Indian Woods Students Participate in a Famous Kansan Dinner Party

IWMS Famous Kansan Dinner Party
Shawnee Mission School District

Seventh-grade students researched and then transformed themselves into a famous Kansan to attend a dinner party in the library at Indian Woods Middle School.

Guests at the dinner party included Russel Stover, Amelia Earhart, Dwight D. Eisenhower and many more. Two classes collaborated on this activity to give the students a chance to interact with a variety of famous Kansans.

“This assignment illustrates the many people from Kansas who have contributed to our state, the country and the world,” Martin Altieri, seventh grade social studies teacher, said.

Over dinner, each guest shared interesting facts about themselves. They asked each other questions to contribute to the conversation.

“The most surprising fact about Hattie McDaniel is that she had 13 siblings,” Sam Williamson, seventh-grader said.

Prior to the dinner party, students wrote autobiographies to help with their dinner conversation. They researched when and where their Kansan was born, there hobbies and biggest achievements and quotes.

“Speaking in the first-person makes their research more memorable and connects them to their famous person,” Kelsey Carnahan, seventh-grade social studies teacher said.

One famous Kansan, John Steuart Curry shared, “I painted a mural at the Department of Justice building,” Another, Jim Ryan, shared his philosophy, “Motivation is what gets you started, habit is what keeps you going.”