by Jessica McBirney
We've identified these texts as great options for text pairings based on similar themes, literary devices, topic, or writing style. Supplement your lesson with one or more of these options and challenge students to compare and contrast the texts. To assign a paired text, click on the text to go to its page and click the "Assign Text" button there.
The Declaration of Independence
- Thomas Jefferson
In “The Declaration of Independence,” representatives from the 13 American colonies declare their independence from Great Britain.Pair “The Declaration of Independence” with “The Road to American Independence” and ask students to discuss what they have learned. How did the events of the American Revolution likely inform the drafting and key points of the Declaration of Independence?
Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death Speech
- Patrick Henry
In this speech, Patrick Henry rouses colonist leaders to take up arms against the British tyranny. It is from this speech that the Declaration of Independence was born. This speech uses an emotional argument, and lays the foundation for fundamental American values of individual power.Pair “Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death Speech” with “The Road to American Independence” and ask students to discuss the relationship between Great Britain and the American colonies as described in both texts. How did the colonists view this relationship? What grievances, as mentioned in “The Road to American Revolution,” are further explained in the speech? What key points do they share?
Paul Revere's Ride
- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
This piece, written nearly a century after the events occurred, tells the story of Paul Revere, whose ride through greater Boston one night in 1775 helped spark the American Revolution. While not entirely historically accurate, the poem popularized the tale most Americans know today. Told from the perspective of an innkeeper, the poem recounts Revere’s midnight ride as he warns colonists of approaching British soldiers. Written in 1860 when America was on the verge of Civil War, Longfellow intended for the poem to be a call to action, reminding supporters of the northern Union that history favors the courageous.Pair “Paul Revere’s Ride” with “The Road to American Independence” and ask students to discuss the legacy of the America Revolutionary War. Why do you think the author forgoes mentioning Paul Revere’s ride in “The Road to American Independence”? How significant do you think this ride was in the revolution—enough to be remembered in a poem?
A Nation Divided: North vs. South
“A Nation Divided: North vs. South” discusses the strengths and weaknesses of the Union and the Confederacy during the American Civil War.Pair “The Road to American Independence” with “A Nation Divided: North vs. South” and ask students to discuss the similar ideas of the two texts. How did the Southern states’ decision to withdraw from the United States compare to the events of the American Revolution?
Issues with the Articles of Confederation
- BirdBrain History
In “Issues with the Articles of Confederation” an enthusiastic narrator describes the contents of the Articles and the thirteen colonies’ reception of them.Pair “The Road to American Independence” with “Issues with the Articles of Confederation” and ask students to discuss why the thirteen colonies felt it was necessary to seek independence from Great Britain. How does the proposed treatment of American citizens in the Articles of the Confederation compare to Great Britain’s treatment of them?
Valley Forge and the American Revolution
- Barbara Radner
“Valley Forge and the American Revolution” explores the circumstances that led to American success in the Revolutionary War.Pair “The Road to American Independence” with “Valley Forge and the American Revolution” in order to have students explore the Revolutionary War more deeply. Teachers may choose to have students read “The Road to American Independence” in order to help provide greater context for “Valley Forge and the American Revolution.”
The Declaration of America’s Immense Offense
- BirdBrain History
In this satirical text, a loyal subject of Great Britain doubts whether America will succeed as a country with its new Declaration of Independence.Pair “The Road to American Independence” with “The Declaration of America’s Immense Offense” and ask students to analyze the reasons why America felt compelled to fight in the Revolutionary War. Then have students analyze why so many British people held the opposing view.
A Participant’s First-Hand Account of the Boston Tea Party
- George Hewes
In “A Participant’s First-Hand Account of the Boston Tea Party,” George Hewes explains what led to the famous event, and a first-hand account of what happened.Pair “A Participant’s First-Hand Account of the Boston Tea Party” with “The Road to American Independence” and ask students to discuss what role the Boston Tea Party played in the American Revolution. What does its role in the revolution tell us about the importance of symbolic acts?
The First Flag
- Barbara Radner
In the short story “The First Flag”, Barbara Radner explores the creation and impact of the first flag of the United States.Pair “The Road to American Independence” with “The First Flag” so that students may further explore America’s history in achieving independence from Great Britain. In what ways do students believe the first American flag was responsible for motivating soldiers during the many battles of the American Revolution?
The Signers of the Declaration: Historical Background
- National Park Service, US Department of the Interior
In the informational text, “The Signers of the Declaration: Historical Background,” the author discusses the events leading up to the War for Independence.Pair “The Road to American Independence” with “The Signers of the Declaration: Historical Background” to provide students with additional information about the events surrounding the Revolutionary War. How do both texts explore why American colonists were unhappy with their treatment by Great Britain? How did their peaceful forms of protest eventually result in armed conflict?