Hannah G. Solomon Dared to Make a Difference

Illustrated by Sofia Moore

Hannah G. Solomon dared to make a difference most all her life. She looked around Chicago, the city where she was born, and saw unfairness all around her. Many people were poor and living in terrible conditions. Immigrants from other countries struggled to survive in their new home. When she grew up, Hannah decided to help change that. She tackled many projects which made a positive difference in people’s lives. She founded the National Council of Jewish Women―the first organization to unite Jewish women around the country for service to their communities. Hannah received push back from some, especially those who thought that women’s only work was to stay home and care for their family. Hannah worked hard to make life better for others, especially women and children, in Chicago and beyond.

Learning Activities

Chicago World’s Fair of 1893

Image by Sofia Moore, illustrator for “Hannah G. Solomon Dared to Make a Difference”

Hannah became well known in Chicago because of her community service and role in creating a four-day program for women at the World’s Fair of 1893. The Ferris wheel made its debut at this grandiose World’s Fair. 

  1. Listen to this You Tube reading of the book, “Mr. Ferris and His Wheel” by Kathryn Gibbs Davis and illustrated by Gilbert Ford
  2. Complete one or both these Activity Sheets:
    Activity Sheet: Who Invented the Ferris Wheel?
    Activity Sheet: What New Inventions Would You Predict at the World’s Fair of 2027? 

The Great Chicago Fire of 1871

Luckily, Hannah’s home was not destroyed in the horrific fire of 1871. Her parents opened up their house to many people who had lost their homes. Seeing their suffering created a lasting impression on Hannah. 

  1. Watch this video (7 minutes) about The Great Chicago Fire from the author Lauren Tarsis, of the book “I Survived the Great Chicago Fire, 1871.”
  2. Complete this worksheet about the Great Chicago Fire

More Activities – Teacher Resources

  1. Great Chicago Fire Lesson Plan
  2. Laura Candler’s Freebie, The Great Chicago Fire