3 Stories to Inspire You for the Great Thanksgiving Listen

Posted by Julia Malta-Weingard on October 24, 2017


Thanksgiving is right around the corner! And for a third year in a row, Facing History is partnering with StoryCorps to encourage high school students from all 50 states to participate in The Great Thanksgiving Listen. StoryCorps challenges teens and educators across the country to sit down with an elder or loved one, record a meaningful conversation, and make history by adding their voices to the StoryCorps Archive and to a special collection at the Library of Congress. It has become a growing national movement to gather the nation’s diverse voices and to recognize the importance of intergenerational listening.

The Great Thanksgiving Listen is StoryCorps’ national project to collect the voices of an entire generation over a single holiday weekend using the free StoryCorps App. Thousands of high schools and students from all 50 states have embraced the challenge by recording and uploading over 75,000 individual interviews.

Here are three brief audio clips recorded for #TheGreatListen from teenagers Lavina, Katie, and Kara to help inspire you and the young people in your life—in the classroom or at home. Each spoke with a parent or grandparent about the lessons they’ve learned in life. You can find these and other stories that reveal the power of storytelling and, most importantly, the power of human connection, in the StoryCorps Archive.

Lavina, 13, asks her grandfather Gope, 68, about coming to America from Bombay, India and seeing snow for the first time. Recorded in Naperville, Illinois for #TheGreatListen 2015.

Katie, 14, asks her parents about her adoption from Korea. Recorded in Georgia for #TheGreatListen 2015.

Kara, 21, asks her grandfather James, 86, about his philosophy on life. Recorded in an Applebee’s Parking Lot, location unknown for #TheGreatListen 2015.

Make sure to also to watch StoryCorps’ Founder Dave Isay’s follow-up TED Talk that he delivered in 2016 to share stories and lessons learned from The Great Listen.

Preserve oral history with us this year by recording your own interview! Teachers can check out this year’s new 2017 Great Thanksgiving Listen Teacher Toolkit and multimedia resources for classroom implementation to help their students participate.

Don’t forget to tag your interview with the keyword FacingHistoryandOurselves!

Sign Up Today

Topics: The Great Listen

At Facing History and Ourselves, we value conversation—in classrooms, in our professional development for educators, and online. When you comment on Facing Today, you're engaging with our worldwide community of learners, so please take care that your contributions are constructive, civil, and advance the conversation.


Welcome to Facing Today, a Facing History blog. Facing History and Ourselves combats racism and antisemitism by using history to teach tolerance in classrooms around the globe.

Subscribe to Email Updates

Recent Posts

Posts by Topic

see all