Lesson Plan

Who are your community’s Truth Tellers?

Find, interview, and celebrate your community’s truth tellers.

Reading Assignment:

Biography of Zyahna Bryant:


Essential Question:

How do people find courage to do what needs to be done?

Lesson Description:

After reading Zyahna Bryant’s story, students discuss motivations and actions of truth tellers and nominate, select, and interview truth tellers in their community and create a display available to the community about each truth teller.


Identifying your Truth Teller:

  1. List three people in your life, community, school who are worthy of the “Truth Teller” 

designation. Be certain that each person has the qualities agreed upon for a Truth Teller. (See Lesson # 2)

  1. Describe the accomplishment(s) or reason for nominating each Truth Teller.

Name: _____________________

Accomplishment(s)/Reason for Nominating: ________________________________________________

Name: _____________________

Accomplishment(s)/Reason for Nominating: ________________________________________________

Name: _____________________

Accomplishment(s/Reason for Nominating): 


  1. Choose one of your nominated Truth Tellers to interview.

Interviewing Your Truth Teller:

  1. Contact your truth teller, explain the project and set a time to meet for the interview.

Date of Interview:    Time:   Place:

  1.   Write 2 – 3 questions of your own to ask your truth teller:

Question 1: ________________________________________________________

Question 2: ________________________________________________________

Question 3:________________________________________________________

Truth Teller Interview Form

(Interviews may be done in person, on Zoom, Google Meets or other virtual connection)

  1. What values have guided you in your life?
  2. What are two or three events that have had a strong influence on your life?
  3. What have you done that you are most proud of?
  4. Do you have a guiding belief in your life?  If so, what is it?
  5. How do people make a difference in the world?
  6. Who are your truth tellers?

Your questions:


Description of Project:  

Please use this when you contact your Truth Teller to schedule an interview.

I am participating in the Community Truth Tellers Project at my school (insert school name here)  We have studied  Americans Who Tell the Truth, people whose portraits have been painted by Robert Shetterly.  Now we are identifying Truth Tellers in our own lives and communities in order to gain a new understanding and appreciation for those people who make a difference right here.  For me, you are a Truth Teller and I would like to schedule a time to talk with you and ask you a few questions.  

The following times are good for me:

Does one of these times work for you?  Thank you!

Discussion/Suggested Lesson Expansion:

Create a display or presentation of your “personal truth tellers” — photos, 

descriptions, their responses to your interview.  This might be any of the following:


Virtual slide show 


Featured articles in a local newspaper or online news source.

Bring Americans Who Tell the Truth (AWTT) original portraits to your community.