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Lesson Plan 4-1: Ode To Francis Scott Key

Explore Key's Life and Write a Poem

When you stand in honor of the national anthem, do you ever reflect on the meaning of the words or the person that wrote them? The story of Francis Scott Key witnessing the bombardment of Fort McHenry is well documented; however, few students know about the life of the man behind the lyrics.

In this lesson, students will investigate the life of Francis Scott Key, an influential lawyer and poet. They will learn what inspired his famous ode to American courage and resilience, as well his life before and after penning The Star-Spangled Banner. Students will write odes to Francis Scott Key based on their biographical research.

This interdisciplinary lesson aligns to Maryland College and Career Ready Standards.

View and download Lesson Plan 4-1 in PDF or MS Word format. 

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