Where's Amelia?

Where's Amelia?
Eleanor Roosevelt: Sports and Popular Culture

Skill: Elementary School
Time Required: One day


One of Eleanor Roosevelt’s friends was Amelia Earhart.  On one occasion Amelia Earhart invited Eleanor Roosevelt to take a flight over the capital.  Eleanor accepted and to mark the occasion Amelia wore an evening gown while flying the plane. Amelia promised to teach Eleanor Roosevelt how to fly and for that reason the first lady obtained her students’ permit.  However, because of Amelia Earhart’s disappearance, Eleanor Roosevelt never got her flying lessons.


In this lesson students will gain an understanding of the difference one person can make when following her dreams.

Materials Required:

Access to the Internet and/or access to a public library.


1. Begin the lesson by telling students about the life of Amelia Earhart, making sure to include the following items:

  • Born in the late 1800’s
  • Worked as a nurse’s aid in Canada during WWI
  • Within six months of learning how to fly bought her own plane
  • Set the first women’s altitude record by rising to 14,000 feet
  • First woman to fly as a passenger across the Atlantic Ocean
  • First woman to pilot a plane solo over the Pacific Ocean
  • Awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross by Congress, first ever given to a woman
  • Disappeared in an attempt to be the first woman to fly around the world
  • Open a discussion and some minds on the role and ability of women

2. Explain to the class that, at the time that Amelia Earhart was breaking records flying planes, the role of women was very restricted.  Women were limited educationally and professionally. Amelia Earhart served as a hero to many young women and as a role model of someone with the courage to follow her dreams.

3. Tell students that they are to identify another person who could be described as courageous and to write a dialogue of the two heroes if they were to actually meet.

Extending the Lesson:

To extend this lesson, have students investigate Amelia Earhart’s disappearance and to present an argument regarding what happened to her.

Sources & Resources:

Amelia Earhart:    
   Butler, Susan.  East to the Dawn: The Life of Amelia Earhart.  Reading: Addison-Wesley, 1997. 
   Pelt, Lori Van.  Amelia Earhart: The Sky’s No Limit.   New York: tom Doherty Associates Books, Inc., 2005. 

Eleanor Roosevelt:
   Freedman, Russell. Eleanor Roosevelt, a Life of Discovery. New York: Clarkion Books, 1993.   (Newberry Award) 
   Rosenburg, Pam. Eleanor Roosevelt. New York: Compass Point Books, 2003. 
   Winget, Mary. Eleanor Roosevelt. Minneapolis: Lerner Publications Company, 2003.
   Embridge, David (ed.). My Day: The Best of Eleanor Roosevelt’s Newspaper columns, 1936-1962. New York: first Da Capo Press, 2001.  
   Feinberg, Barbara Silberdick.  Eleanor Roosevelt, a Very Special Lady. Brookfield: The Millbrook Press, 2003. 
   Mattern, Joanne. Eleanor Roosevelt, More Than a First Lady.  New York: The Rosen Publishing Group, 2003. 
   Roosevelt, Eleanor. The Autobiography of Eleanor Roosevelt.  New York: Harper & Brothers, 1961. 
   Roosevelt, Eleanor. You Learn By Living. Philadelphia: The Westminster Press, 1960.

Amelia Earhart:
Eleanor Roosevelt:


This lesson was written by Debra L. Clark, Kent State University.