Lesson Plan

Benjamin Franklin's Many "Hats"

Hiram Powers (1805–1873), Benjamin Franklin, 1862. 
Photo caption

Hiram Powers (1805–1873), Benjamin Franklin, 1862. 

"Since our Time is reduced to a Standard, and the Bullion of the Day minted out into Hours, the Industrious know how to employ every Piece of Time to a real Advantage in their different Professions: And he that is prodigal of his Hours, is, in Effect, a Squanderer of Money."

—Benjamin Franklin, Poor Richard Improved, 1751


Ben Franklin, a signer of the Declaration of Independence and of the Constitution was also a philanthropist, a community leader, patriot, and Founding Father. This lesson plan exemplifies all our new country fought for in the Revolutionary War: individualism, democracy, community, patriotism, scientific inquiry and invention, and the rights of “We the People.”

Guiding Questions

What were Franklin's many roles during the founding period of the United States?

What character traits helped make Franklin such a versatile and accomplished man?

What artistic movements and styles influenced Hiram Powers?

Learning Objectives

Have a solid understanding of Benjamin Franklin's life, philosophy, and accomplishments

Understand an artist's process of creating and executing a work of art