The stories of Pocahontas and John Smith have been told many times but their story has been told in many different ways. The way Disney chooses to tell the story in the Pocahontas movie conflicts with primary source documents of John Smith at the time. Students will read two primary source documents by John Smith that are different accounts of how he was saved by Pocahontas and then watch the Disney video clip where Pocahontas saves John Smith in the movie Pocahontas. Students will notice that one of the primary sources does not match up to the movie. I use to call this lesson the angry letters to Disney because most students will be upset that Disney chooses fiction and excitement over what may have really happened. Of course this is a whole new lesson about why you cannot always believe what you see T.V. This is a very fun activity your students will love and remember.
Your students will write a formal letter to Disney explaining whether or not they liked the Movie and if it was truthful or misleading. Then send the letters to Disney and wait for their response!
What you get in this 5 page packet. Two primary sources form John Smith, a rubric and a how to write your letter example, also notes/lesson plan for the teacher.