Who Would Win? Recommendation

Who Wins?

I wanted to share with you today a little bit about this amazing resource, Who Wins? by Clay Swartz illustrated by Tom Booth. In this book they have cut up the pages so that you can randomly select any of the historical figures listed to "compete" against the other historical figure. They have provided you with more than 100,000 possible combinations, which means most of the match ups are going to be completely hypothetical, but it provides great talking points, as well as research material. 

The winner is entirely up to YOU, the reader. The author has provided you with interesting facts, short biographies, and they even rank them in 6 different categories: wealth, fitness, wisdom, bravery, artistry, leadership, and intelligence. All of the stats given are completely subjective, so you as the reader are able to interpret the data in any way you want and then justify your decision of the winner based on the facts given. 

Ways to use in the classroom:

I am a reading and writing teacher, so when I see this resource I don't think necessarily about the historical interest as much as I do the reading and writing components. As I have looked through this resource, I have been thinking of several different ways to use this in the classroom. In our Texas state standards, the TEKS, every year there are research standards that our students are required to master, as well as persuasive writing standards. I immediately think about a writing piece and how students can use this as research, and then collaborate or individually continue research online, and then create a persuasive piece on why the person they feel would win would win. 

Here's a quick example: 

I randomly opened the pages to those below.. 
Jane Austen V.S. Pablo Picasso

In looking at their pictures, no of course they are not a likely mash up, but in comparing their numbers they are very similar in a lot of ways. This would give students the opportunity to research and learn more about their two individuals and then persuade their peers and myself, their teacher, as to why they feel either Jane or Pablo would win. Even then I think they could take it even further and create a project with a group or partner and then present... I even think this could also be like a biography museum where they dress up as the winner and then present their winner and their why. 

You can find this book here on Amazon: 

Do you have any other ideas of use in this classroom? Drop your ideas below in a comment!! I look forward to sharing more resources for use in the classroom from Workman Publishing over the next few weeks! 

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