Overview
Using material from the Sidonie de la Houssaye and the Léona Queyrouze sections of the exhibit, students will gain an appreciation for what it meant to be a woman writer in Louisiana in the Nineteenth Century.

Objectives
•Students will begin to learn about the lives and work of these two women writers by examining why they both chose to write with pen names.
•Students will use the Internee to write a letter or E-mail to an influential person in their life. This will teach them to communicate with the Internee and to make their opinions known
•Students will work closely with exhibit material to construct a children’s story.

Necessary Materials
Internet access, writing supplies, postage stamps and envelopes.

Teaching Procedure

Activity 1: Nom de Plume
Both Sidonie de la Houssaye and Léona Queyrouze wrote under a nom de plume, or pen name. Ask students to read the texts of both of these sections and answer the following questions: What was Léona Queyrouze’s nom de plume? Why did she choose this name? What was Sidonie de la Houssaye’s nom de plume? Why did she choose this name? Did Queyrouze and de la Houssaye have different reasons for signing their work with a nom de plume?
Then have students pick a nom de plume for themselves. If they were to choose another name to use, what would it be? Why?

Activity 2: Write a letter or E-Mail message
Léona Queyrouze wrote a letter to Émile Zola, a famous and important French writer who had greatly influenced her own work. She was very proud when he responded to her letter. Have each student pick a person who greatly influences them. Ask students to write a letter or E-mail message to this person. Have the students send the letters or E-mail messages. Researching addresses on the Internet will be part of the challenge of this project.

Activity 3: Write a children’s story
Sidonie de la Houssaye wrote many stories for her children and grandchildren. Have students write a children’s story using the photographs from both of these sections of the exhibit. Léona Queyrouze and Sidonie de la Houssaye may be characters in the story. Have the students sign their stories with their new pen-names.