Ken Burns Classroom

Mapping the Roosevelts’ Legacy

Ken Burns Film: The Roosevelts

Collections: Emergence of Modern America (1890-1930)

Subject: Government

Grade Level: 7-12

Run Time: 1 class period


The Roosevelts are one of the most influential families in history. Their legacy and impact on the United States and the world have been felt through the generations. Schools, streets, bridges, public and private buildings, and parks have been named for the Roosevelts. Chances are, one of these in your town or a town near you was named after one of the Roosevelts.


Place students into small brainstorming groups and have them identify any buildings, roads, or structures that are named after one of the Roosevelts. Students can also research in the library through public records and online at The Living New Deal “Projects by State and City” ( or by entering the word Roosevelt and the name of their city and state. In some cases, students might find information that explains how a building, road, park, or structure was created through the efforts of one of the Roosevelts or dedicated by one of them (example: structures developed through the WPA). Have students record the name and location of the item, its history including when it was built or developed, a description, a photo or film or video clip (if available), and any other pertinent information. Have students to go The Roosevelts website ( and click the Map tag near the top. Have students follow the instructions to share their connection to the Roosevelt legacy.

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