Grade 8 English Chasing a dream/No Limits Biographical Essay

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Grade 8 English Chasing A Dream/No Limits Biographical Essay

Due Date: ___________________

Approximate length: 300-400 words
A biographical essay is a paper that describes a person’s life and is usually in chronological order.


Students are asked to choose one name from the list and create a biographical essay on that person. (See handouts on how to write a biographical essay). The people on the list are generally well known and have ‘achieved their dreams’.

Students are advised to follow the Biographical Essay Format listed below. Essays should be word-processed / typed (12 pt. font) or neatly written in dark blue or black ink. The scoring rubric for the essay is also below.

Biographical Essay Format_____________________________________

  • Title page

  • Introductory paragraph

  • Topic sentence & body paragraph #1 (Early Life/Challenges)

  • Topic sentence and body paragraph #2 (Turning Points/Big Breaks)

  • Topic sentence and body paragraph #3 (Achieving of Dreams and Success)

  • Concluding paragraph (Impact on the World/Legacy)

  • Reference Page (books, websites etc.)

Grade 8 English Research Scoring Rubric

Title Page (title, student name) _____/2

Introduction (gets readers attention, coherent, sets up essay) _____/5

Body (information is clear, well organized and engaging) _____/15
Conclusion (pulls together the essay, displays clarity, thoughtful) _____/5
Conventions (spelling, grammar, sentence structure) _____/5
Reference Page (minimum of three, consistent) _____/3
Total Score: _____/35 = _____%
Teacher Comments:

Biography Essay/Photo Essay Subjects

Chasing a Dream & No Limits Unit

  1. Albert Einstein

  2. Walt Disney

  3. J.K. Rowling

  4. Bill Gates

  5. Steven Spielberg

  6. Stephen King

  7. Oprah Winfrey

  8. Harry Houdini

  9. Stephen Hawking

  10. Malala Yousafzai

  11. Bethany Hamilton

  12. Mary Shelley

  13. Marilyn Monroe

  14. Emily Dickinson

  15. Theodor Seuss Geisel

  16. The Beatles

  17. Stephenie Meyer

  18. Beyonce

  19. Alicia Keys

  20. Lionel Messi

  21. Another ‘person who has achieved their dreams’ approved by

your ELA teacher.

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