Diary of a First Lady: The Experience of Voice and Text
Lady Bird Johnson: First Ladies' Lives
Skill: Middle School
Time Required: Two to three class periods
Lady Bird Johnson, as the wife of the Vice President, was riding in the car immediately behind the President’s car when John F. Kennedy was assassinated. Like many First Ladies, Lady Bird kept a diary of her experiences. What is different about her diary is that portions of it were initially done with a voice recorder rather than in writing. The voice was then transcribed into written documents, which she then revised. In 1970 she published the diary, “White House Diary” and then in 1981 a film was produced, “The First Lady, A portrait of Lady Bird Johnson.” In this lesson, students will have the opportunity to listen to her voice diary (via the Internet), then complete their own week-long diary only using a voice recording device, then transcribing and editing one day of their diary.