Study Guides and Plays invite young and older readers into a person’s life; to engage with their words, struggles, triumphs, poems, songs and all the primary sources I have used to shape the story of a life.  What starts with the question: “Why do you think the author chose this person or people to write about?” then inevitably leads to a classroom discussion filled with the students’ energy, questions, ideas and new projects based on the material in the books.

The Doreen Rappaport Study Guides grew out of my many school visits. I wanted to pass along the questions and projects that students and teachers shared with me. I hope you like them. If your students have questions and ideas they want to share.  Write to me at:

Let’s keep learning together.
— Doreen Rappaport



Common Core Alignment
This guide is aligned with the College and Career Readiness Anchor Standards (CCR) for Reading (Informational Text), Writing, and Language. The broad CCR standards are the foundation for the grade level-specific Common Core State Standards. Each question and activity in this guide includes a reference for the CCR strand, domain, and standard that is addressed. To support instruction also reference your grade-level specific Common Core State Standards to scaffold the questions for your students.
Helen’s Big World: The Life  of Helen Keller
Jack’s Path to Courage: The Life of John F. Kennedy

Eleanor, Quiet No More: The Life of Eleanor Roosevelt
Abe’s Honest Words: The Life of Abraham Lincoln
John’s  Secrete Dreams: The Life of John Lennon
Martin’s Big Words: The Life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.



Beyond Courage:The Untold Story of Jewish Resistance During the Holocaust

Black History Trilogy- No More!, Stories and Songs of Slave Resistance, Free At Last! Stories and Songs of Emancipation, Nobody Gonna Turn Me ‘Round: Stories and Songs of the Civil Rights Movement

Lady Liberty: A Biography



Living Dangerously: American Women Who Risked their Lives for AdventuresThe Alger Hiss TrialThe Lizzie Borden TrialThe Sacco-Vanzetti TrialTinker vs. Des Moines

Abe’s Honest Words • Dirt on Their Skirts • Eleanor, Quiet No More • Escape from Slavery • Freedom Ship • Free at Last! • In The Promised Land • John’s Secret Dreams • Judge/Jury books • Lady Liberty • Living Dangerously: American Women Who Risked Their Lives for Adventure • Martin’s Big Words • Nobody Gonna Turn Me Around • No More! • United No More! • Victory or Death! • We Are the Many

*Freedom Ship



As part of the California Young Reader Medal program, educators in California have made my book into a play, and I think it’s great. And I think your student will like performing in it.

Helen Keller California Young Readers Medal Play

Elizabeth Started All the Trouble Play