Philanthropy Bio-Poem

9, 10, 11, 12

Based on researched information, participants write a bio-poem about a philanthropist. 

PrintOne Forty-Five Minute Session
  • Research information on the public lives and work of a chosen philanthropist.
  • Write a bio-poem highlighting their life.
  • copies of Bio-Poem handout below


  1. Anticipatory Set:

    Read aloud a sample bio-poem and ask the listeners to reflect on what they learned about the person from the poem. 


    Intelligent, determined, patient, charismatic

    Brother of freedom fighters

    worldwide Lover of learning, equality, freedom, peace,

    Who feels pride, sadness, joy, dignity

    Who fears prison, rioting, injustice

    Who would like to see world peace, understanding, harmony

    Resident of South Africa


  2. Distribute Bio-Poem Guide (handout) to guide the writing of a bio-poem about the philanthropist they chose in lesson one. They may need to do further research and reading about the philanthropist.

  3. Use the writing process, including peer editing and proofing to bring bio-poems to final form.

    Allow time for participants to share their poems aloud or displayed in a public area.

Philanthropy Framework

  1. Strand PHIL.II Philanthropy and Civil Society
    1. Standard PCS 06. Philanthropy in History
      1. Benchmark HS.2 Give an example of individual philanthropic action that influenced national or world history.
  2. Strand PHIL.III Philanthropy and the Individual
    1. Standard PI 01. Reasons for Individual Philanthropy
      1. Benchmark HS.10 Identify reasons why historic figures acted for the common good.
      2. Benchmark HS.4 Cite historical examples of citizen actions that affected the common good.