SOS: 25 Things You Didn’t Know

Welcome to  Spotlight on Strategies Challenge!  Our S.O.S series provides help, tips, and tricks for integrating DE media into your curriculum.

25 Things You Didn’t Know About…

PDF Version


Open just about any entertainment magazine and you will inevitably find a page that shares “25 Things You Didn’t Know About” a certain celebrity. They often reveal surprising facts that give you a better idea of who they are. When students are learning about a new concept or historical figure, it is important to help them understand what’s most important to know. In a world where they are constantly surrounded by information, an effective learner must be able to filter out what is most important. Using some construction paper, markers and resources from Discovery Education, students will create a a similar list of “25 things you didn’t know” for a specific topic or historical figure as a way to share what they feel is most important.



  • Explain to students that they will be creating a “25 Things You Didn’t Know” list about the 5 committee members who drafted the Declaration of Independence: Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, and Benjamin Franklin, Roger Sherman and Robert Livingston.
  • Divide students into 5 groups. Each group will be assigned one of the 5 authors.
  • Provide each group with a series of images, videos and articles about their author from Discovery education. You may want to create a folder using “my content” for each author. Using these resources, each group must come up with a list of 5 “Things you didn’t know”. For example, the list of resources for Thomas Jefferson could include:
  • Using a large sheet of construction paper,, markers and printed images from Discovery Education, students will  create their “25 Things You Didn’t Know About The Authors of the Declaration of Independence” poster.
  • Have each group share their 5 facts and discuss why they chose those facts. Ask the groups to site evidence as to why the facts they chose are “important” to know.


  • Select a topic that matches your curriculum.
  • Search Discovery Education to create a list of resources for students to explore. You may want to create a folder in “my content” for each topic or historical figure.
  • Divide students into groups and have them explore the Discovery Education resources to come up with at list of “Things You Didn’t Know”
  • Using construction paper, markers and Discovery Education images, have students create their “25 things” poster
  • Share the poster and facilitate a whole class discussion around why they chose their facts

You can take the challenge by:

  • Implementing this strategy and letting us know how it went by posting a comment below.
  • Using this strategies in your grade level planning discussions and/or professional development and reporting your events. (Remember we consider an event anytime 3 or more educators gather together… doesn’t have to be in a computer lab… could be sitting around the lunch table)
  • Photocopying the flier and distributing it in your colleague’s boxes and/or posting it to your own BulleDEN board.

To see other strategies in this series click here.  For a link to all the PDFs in this series click here.


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  1. Will Sellers said:

    I’m going to try this, but I’m going to think of a way students may present their projects digitally and to match the language and writing standards in Alabama.

  2. DiAnne Galm said:

    I am using this strategy slightly tweaked. My students will be working in groups to create a bulletin board that shows the 25 things you need to know about exercise.

  3. Annie Call said:

    I teach sixth grade, and sometimes it is difficult for students to relate to ancient history. I think I might try to use this with an ancient historical figure or an ancient civilization. Whether their products are created on paper or digitally, it gives students a chance to be creative, add in a little humor (when appropriate), and have fun while presenting historical information.

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