This series presents a range of historical biographies representing contributors to the arts, exploration, philosophy, science and leaders in peace movements. Each is written as a narrative combining facts and personal perspectives in an easy to read portrayal of the person, times and significant achievements. Liberally illustrated throughout the layout of images is used to break up the paragraphs. Illustrators vary across the titles, adding variation to the collection. An outstanding example is the work of Australian illustrator Robert Ingpen, to illustrate the biography of Captain James Cook. You can view several pages of each book to gain an overview of the style and variations in each work on the the Mason Crest publisher website.
The breadth of selected personalities ensures that individual titles will support a range of curriculum topics including English, History, Science, Performing and Visual Arts, Religion and Philosophy. As a collection, and a stimulus for a study of biographical writing or important people in history, it would be interesting to investigate who is ‘missing’ from the line up for students to seek other worthy candidates to then go on an write their own biographical accounts. The series is more suited to secondary students, however, where a personality is of particular interest to the primary curriculum, such as world exploration, then the content is still accessible.
The following book trailer presents the titles in the series, rather than information about them. Beneath it, is some explanatory information about the book trailer’s production that may assist classroom teachers who wish to incorporate this form of literary response into the classroom.
This book trailer was created in the free option for PowToon and has ample features for school students – upload as many images as required, choice of 11 free to use music tracks, with options for voice over and to upload personal sound tracks. There are ample options for backgrounds, images and animated figures (not used in this example). Publication is within PowToon then you can share to social media, embed code for adding to social media such as a blog, or uploaded to YouTube which requires an account, such as a Google account.