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Staff Class to the Past

School: High Tech Middle Chula Vista

City/State: Chula Vista, CA

Grade(s): 8

Format(s): Book

Subject(s): English Language Arts, Science and Technology, Social Studies

Project Overview

Eight grade students at High Tech Middle Chula Vista in Chula Vista, California wrote and illustrated this book about time travel. It started with a dream that their teacher had in which the entire eighth grade class went back in time with her to visit the 16 most important events in U.S. history. Excited by this idea, they explored the concept of time traveling with wormholes by watching videos and increasing their understanding of this concept. In a creative turn, they decided that a gummy worm would be their exit key out of the wormhole.

Students split into groups to select the important events that they would research. Each person in the group wrote a vignette about the character that they “met” as they traveled through time. Countless hours were spent re-reading, editing, searching for grammatical errors and working towards clarity and accuracy.  

The 163-page book includes both a student and teacher introduction, and starts with an explanation of wormholes. Back matter includes an explanation of the project geared towards educators. The project can be purchased at .

How This Project Can Be Useful

  • Highlights a project that engages students in history in a very personal and meaningful way
  • Requires students to work together to create a cohesive work
  • Appealing format for a wide range of students
  • Exemplifies a creative approach to historical topics
  • The thorough introduction and back matter provide a comprehensive guide to the project

Relevant Resources

Common Core State Standards

Standard Long Term Learning Target
  • I can write narrative texts about real or imagined experiences using relevant details and event sequences that make sense.
  • EL has not created long-term learning targets for WHST standards.
  • EL has not created long-term learning targets for WHST standards.
  • EL has not created long-term learning targets for WHST standards.
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