This group assignment works great for the beginning of the year in American Lit. Groups are assigned a major literary period to research and create a Prezi to teach the class about that periods key characteristics. In the process, they practice their research, technology, communication and presentations skills. The project can be done entirely in class over 2-3 periods, or assigned as outside project work.
I have linked sites within the document with information on the different periods, although you should feel free to use whatever source material is appropriate for your students.
A rubric is also included.