New York's Inventors

"Necessity is the mother of invention" - By Frankie


This a two-part, two-week research project, where students will be learning about one of New York's inventors from the 19th Century - the early 20th Century. They will be working in class, during the 40 minute social studies period, and at home to complete the assignment. The project comes after the science lesson on simple machines. The first part of the lesson involves selecting an inventor. It will be about an hour long in class.

The Inventors!


The teacher begins the lesson by asking students if they ever tried to invent something or knows of someone who has. Students share what they, or someone they know, invented. The teacher explains that they are going to look at different inventors who lived during the early 19th century. We will examine what they invented and the purpose of their inventions.

The Inventions!


In this activity, the teacher explains students will be given a few websites that contain lists of different New York inventors. They will be responsible for looking up the inventors to see which one they would like to study. They have to select a New York Inventor who made their innovative contributions to history from the 1800s to the early 1900s. Students will be responsible for posting their selection in Padlet, where I have created a board for everyone to post. The post will consist of:

  • The name of the inventor
  • The years of life (from birth to death)
  • Something that they invented
  • A picture of the inventor and the invention

The Padlet will be saved as an image file and sent to our Teacher Center. There it will be printed as a large poster. The poster will be prominently placed outside our room. It will be used to teach others about the inventors. Also, the poster will serve as an "advertisement" for the projects the students will have on our class webpage.

Click here to go to Padlet

Use the Isaac Singer post as a model for what you are expected to do.

Activity 2 - The Project

Students will be responsible for typing a short biography of the inventory they chose. They will also create a "New York's Inventors" Movie Maker presentation. In this movie students will focus on the life of the inventor and share some of the inventions that person is credited with. They will be required to provide music, narration, text, and other elements to their movie (see instructions). Students will work on the movie in class and at home, using a variety of resources - including the school library. All movies will be showcased on our webpage and displayed in the hall during Parent/Teacher conferences.
Click here for Project Information

This will be given to students and posted on both the class webpage and Google Classroom.


This project has elements of differentiation built into it. All students will be typing their work. They will have the program's spelling and grammar checking features to use. They will be working with multimedia, allowing them to work with elements that they are more comfortable with while still getting practice in areas they are not comfortable with. Time will be set aside to provide individual support for students in all aspects of the project.
Student Movie Maker Sample

This is a biography video that was done by a former student. It is a great example of what a student can do with Movie Maker. I can also use it to teach students what to look for with images.