Girl power – historical figures (LS-PT-702)

Using girl power as a pretext for discussion, young learners will develop multiple skills in order to present a biography of some historical figures to the class. Through an interdisciplinary approach, they read some biographies and practice the past simple tense, in the English lessons; they do research for specific information in the Europeana collections and create a PowerPoint presentation in the IT lessons, and they draw a poster in the Arts lessons.

The students learn about several female historical figures in order to realize how woman empowerment can be seen in all areas of life:

Anna Pavlova

Amelia Earhart


Florence Nightingale

Maya Angelou

Marie Curie

By the end of this LS, students will be able to know more about powerful female historical figures and feel more confident to speak in the past tense. They will have discussed girl power and how women from such different backgrounds got to be successful.

Furthermore, they will have created a PowerPoint and drawn a poster to exhibit in school.


This learning scenario was implemented in the 7th grade (12 years old), in the English, ICT, and Arts lessons. It is an integration of topics from various other subjects (Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, History), and it can be introduced to students at any age.

This Learning Scenario fits the Portuguese national curriculum and 21st-century skills of the Profile of the Student at the End of Compulsory Education through the activities and multidisciplinary approach.

  • ICT curriculum – PowerPoint presentations; copyright; safety;
  • Arts curriculum – human figure; expressive drawing; form; line; design;
  • English curriculum – past simple; historical figures; biography; intercultural domain; strategic skills – learning to learn; teamwork; collaboration; online research using their own phone; selecting information; self-assessment; peer assessment;
  • Civics curriculum – gender equality; respect and other values;

The activities developed in the implementation of the Learning Scenario were:

  1. In the English lesson, the teacher explains the project to students, informs them of what the aims of the project are, and what is expected of them.
  2. The teacher discusses with students where and how to find appropriate information, how to critically process it and to check if the information they found is accurate.
  3. In pairs, students use their own phone to research about specific facts of the historical figures’ biography on Wikipedia and complete a biodata table.
  4. In pairs, students research about photos and images of the historical figures’ biography on Europeana platform to create a PowerPoint/Google Slides presentation.
  5. At the end of the lesson students use their own phone to complete a Mentimeter to give feedback on this part of the project.
  6. In the ICT lesson, in pairs, students create a PowerPoint/Google Slides presentation.
  7. At the end of the lesson students use their own phone to complete a Mentimeter to give feedback on this part of the project.
  8. In the Arts lesson, in pairs, students draw a poster of the person, according to the teacher’s guidelines. Each poster should represent the historical figures’ iconic elements.
  9. At the end of the lesson students use their own phone to complete a Mentimeter to give feedback on this part of the project.
  10. In the English lesson, students help define the assessment criteria and are given a grid with the final items.
  11. In pairs, students present the historical figures’ biography to the class. All the students fill in the grid with their assessment.
  12. After the presentations the students reflect on their performance and assess the quality of their work. They also reflect and discuss the importance of girl power and how women from so many different backgrounds became successful.

Students’ feedback

Students’ feedback was given through self-assessment tasks. They also discussed girl power, and how significant the chosen historical figures were for both their time and the planet.

Mentimeter was a practical tool for giving the teachers quick feedback on the parts of the work by using their own phones.

Would you like to know more about this learning scenario? You can download it below:

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Public Domain Mark 1.0: the featured image used to illustrate this article has been found on Europeana and has been provided by the Tekniska museet.

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