For Educators
Curriculum Title:
All in the Family

Johnny Thompson (1876-1951) was also known as “Cyclone Johnny,” and the “Sycamore Kid.” In the early 1900s, he was a very famous boxer. He fought for 15 years, and won the Middleweight Championship of the World in 1911. After he retired, he returned to Sycamore (he lived at 453 E. State Street) and served on the local police force for four years (Sycamore True Republican May 29, 1957).

Note: Materials are for educational purposes only.

Grade Level:
Core Curriculum: K.R.1.9 Integration of Knowledge and Ideas: With prompting and support, identify basic similarities in and differences between two texts on the same topic using illustrations.

Illinois State Social Studies Goal: 18.C Understand social systems, with an emphasis on the United States.

District 427: Compare and contrast different family structures and individuals.
Guided Questions:

How is this family similar to and different from yours?

Suggested Activity:
  1. As you begin the discussion of families, show your class pictures of families that lived in Sycamore.
  2. Ask how old students think these pictures are and why they have drawn that conclusion.
  3. Ask students to look at the pictures and explain how this family is similar to their families.
  4. Be sure they look at their clothing,  including how boys dressed in the past, their mode of transportation, size of the suit cases, and their lack of electronic devices.
  5. After discussing similarities, discuss how their families are different.
  6. As students are sharing, the teacher can use a T-chart to write down similarities and differences.
  7. This would be a good time to discuss if students would like to have lived during this period of time and why or why not.
Suggested Assessment:

Students could draw a picture of their family, including how they travel.

When sharing their picture, they could separate into one groups whose families are similar to this family, and another group that has families that are different from these families.