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Colonial Diaries


Full Member
I'm having my students write entries for a colonial diary. I'm looking for resources which I can use for models demonstrating voice and language. DEAR AMERICA series had 2 books for this time period which I have already used. Just wondering if anyone knows of other books or websites where I can continue to show my students how to write authentically for the 18th century. Thanks.



The Slave Dancer
Witch of Blackbird Pond (may be a little too early)
Anything by Nathaniel Hawthorne (writes in the 1800s about the 1700s)
Charles Dickens also wrote in the 1800s about the 1700s
Look at your own shelves, at home. You probably have adult fiction that illustrates the language.

The documents surrounding American independence would be good examples. This is hard reading, but it was a long time ago! John Locke (maybe just a paragraph) would illustrate it. Ben Franklin's Poor Richard Almanac would be interesting, fun, and approachable.

Look for the America Firsthand series. It's for high school and college students, but I use selected passages as read-alouds in sixth grade. These are eyewitness accounts of big events in American history. I can't use a lot, as the language really is a barrier for kids my kids' age, but it authentically illustrates the language of the time.

Mrs. G

Senior Member
Dear America

Try one of the Dear America books by Scholastic. I can't remember the title of the one that is a colonial theme. They are all written in a diary format. My students love these books. They also have the My Name is America series that is written in journal form as well.;)