RESEARCH ON TEACHING HAS INDICATED THAT EFFECTIVE TEACHERS...

1.  Spend about half (50%) of class time on interactive academic activities: developing new concepts or skills, discussing and reviewing assigned work, guided practice, developing higher level thinking skills, developing vocabulary, math, research skills, etc.

 

 

2.  Spend about one-third (35%) of class time on non-interacticve class activities: silent reading, written work, testing, etc.

 

 

3.  Spend less than 15% of class time on classroom management and organization: passing papers, explaining activities, arranging desks, lesson transitions, taking attendance, making announcements, etc.

 

 

4.  Understand and use appropriate instructional systems to assist students in the acquisition of information, skill building, concept development, development of higher level thinking skills, etc.

 

 

5.  Spend very little in-class time socializing with students, visitiors or aides.

 

 

6.  Plan daily activities in advance and make them clear to students: For example, writing the day's schedule and objectives on the board.

 

 

7.  Use a variety of academic activities during class time.

 

 

8.  Have students read aloud to assess comprehension, build vocabulary, etc.

 

 

9.  Give short quizzes and use other techniques to check for student understanding.

 

 

10.  Focus most instruction on the whole class or small groups rather than on individuals.

 

 

11.  Have an overview or review before presentation of new material and a concluding summery.

 

 

12.  Distribute opportunities for verbal responses equally among the students.

 

 

13.  Praise student successes and efforts.

 

 

14.  Rephrase or give clues to help students answer questions before diverting them to other students.

 

 

15.  Develop ideas through discussion and/or writing.

 

 

16.  Plan group and student interaction.

IT IS THE SUPREME ART OF THE TEACHER TO AWAKEN JOY IN CREATIVE EXPRESSION AND KNOWLEDGE.

~Albert Einstein

EFFECTIVE TEACHERS

Effective teachers are knowledgeable about the content and nature of the disciplines and are enthusiastic about the subjects they teach.  They also have a clear sense of the reasons why students benefit from the study of these subjects.

 

 

Integrate other Disciplines

Teachers at all grade levels integrate other disciplines into their teaching, looking at historical events in their geographical, political, social and economic contexts.

 

 

Included Multiple Perspectives

In order to gain a rich sense of the depth and power of history, teachers look at the past from multiple perspectives, exploring with their students the lives of groups traditionally ignored in history curricula, such as the poor, families, women, slaves and immigrants.

 

 

Accommodate Diverse Learners

Teachers select topics, find materials, use pedagogy and interact with students in ways that accommodate all learners.

 

 

Promote Curriculum across Grade Levels

Teachers pay heed to articulation across the grade levels.

 

 

Reflect and Improve Teaching Practices

Teachers use analysis of student work, reflection, research and discussions with peers to constantly improve their teaching practices.

A TEACHER IS LIKE A DOCTOR; HALF THE VALUE OF HIS CARE LIES

IN THE CONFIDENCE WITH WHICH ONE APPROACHES HIM.

~Stephen West

FINDINGS ON HOW STUDENTS LEARN

Knowledge is actively created and is not passively received.  Telling is not teaching.

 

 

Individuals create new knowledge by reflecting on their past physical and mental actions and by expressing these reflections they reveal their current level of understanding.

 

 

Substantive learning occurs in periods of conflict and confusion over long periods of time.

 

 

Members of a culture cooperatively establish ideas.

 

 

Opportunities for learning occur during social interaction involving collaborative dialogue, explanation, justification and

negotiation of meaning.

LESSON PLAN FORMAT

Lesson Title:

Framework Connection: (How does this lesson support the framework?)

Focus question: (What concept do you want to teach this lesson?)

Outcomes: (What will the students to be able to do at the conclusion of the lesson?  Provide four examples.)

1.

 

2.

 

3.

 

4.

Target Vocabulary: (What words do the students need to know to understand the concepts?)

Sources: (What photos, diaries, first-hand accounts will you use?)

Visuals: (What pictures, realia, charts, maps, etc. will you use?)

PROCEDURE

Motivation: (How will you start your lesson?)

Vocabulary Activities: (How will you teach and reinforce the target vocabulary?)

Guided Instruction: (What activities will you assign to insure understanding?  How will you use interactive learning, accomodate different learning styles, etc.?)

Integrating Language: (How will you include reading, writing, listening, speaking in your lesson?)

Assessment: (How will you check for understanding and mastery?)

Independent work: (What follow-up activities will you assign?)

by Tom Gibbons

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DESIGNING GUIDED INSTRUCTION

LEARNING OPPORTUNITIES

INSTRUCTIONAL STRATEGIES

What will students need to do to achieve the knowledge and skills identified in the standard(s) and learning outcomes of the lesson?

• analyze primary source documents

• view a video

• visit a museum

• research for information

• examine visuals (pictures, realia, charts, maps)

• role play a situation

• reenact a scene

• listen for information

• play a game

• make a game

• watch a performance

• participate in a debate

• create a historic newspaper

• write a poem

• write an essay

• write a story

• conduct an interview

• make an oral presentation

• sing a song

• write a song

• teach a lesson

• create a political cartoon

• construct a diorama

• develop a storyboard

• critique a piece of artwork

• create a piece of artwork

• make entries in a journal

• participate in a service learning activitiy

• draw a map

• make a collage

• create a time line

• complete a crossword puzzle

• create a crossword puzzle

What instructional strategies will the teacher provide to enable all students to successfully participate in the indentified learning opportunities?

Motivational Strategies: Before you begin...

• bingo

• realia

• picture books

• role play

• dress in "character"

• technology

 

Accommodations: What support systems or accommodations will be provided so that every student has the opportunity to learn?

• target vocabulary

• glossary of terms

• visuals

• integrated language

• extended activities

• independent work

• graphic organizers

• study guides

• technology

• cloze activities

• context clues

• audio visuals

• cooperative learning

• role play

• Reader's Theatre

• oral presentations that are modified (speak slowly, repeat, limit vocabulary and sentence length)

• readings that are modified

• demonstrations

• opportunities to practice

• interactive learning

• hands-on projects

• use of students' background knowledge

• T charts/Venn diagrams

DESIGNING ASSESSMENT TASKS

What student product(s) and/or performance(s) will provide evidence of student learning?

WRITTEN

ORAL

VISUAL

• advertisement

• autobiography

• biography

• biographical sketch

• book report/review

• character portrait

• crossword puzzle

• description

• dialogue

• diary

• editorial

• essay

• game

• instructions

• invitations

• journal/log

• labels and captions

• letter: business, personal, to the editor, etc.

• magazine article

• memo

• notetaking/notemaking

• newspaper article

• persuasive writing

• poem

• postcard

• proposal

• questionnaire/survey

• Reader's Theatre

• research report

• rules

• resume

• script

• story

• test

• audiotape

• commercials

• debate

• dialogues

• dictate sentences, simple stories, story endings

• discussion

• dramatization

• first person narrative

• interview

• newscast

• oral presentation

• oral report

• play

• poetry reading

• rap

• role play

• skit

• song

• speech

• teach a lesson

 

• advertisements

• banner

• cartoon

• chart

• collage

• collection

• computer graphic

• construction

• data table

• design

• diagram

• display

• diorama

• drawing

• filmstrip

• graph

• graphic organizer

• grid/matrices

• KWL chart

• map

• model

• outline

• painting

• photograph

• poster

• scrapbook

• sculpture

• slide show

• storyboard

• T chart

• tableau

• time line

• Venn diagram

• webbing/mind map

 

USING PRIMARY SOURCES

Overview

INTRODUCTION

 

What are primary sources?

Primary sources are authentic, first-hand accounts of history created by individuals who have either participated in or witnessed an event in the past.

 

 

They include:

Written Records such as documents, records, reports, letters, diaries, journals, and poetry;

 

Artifacts/Relia/Memorabilia such as tools, clothing, memorabilia and collectibles; and

 

Historical Visuals such as photographs, drawings, cartoons, artwork, and sculpture.

 

Many of the readings used in teaching history are secondary sources.  A secondary source is developed by selecting, summarizing and eliminating information about an event.  The most common secondary source used in schools is textbooks.  They are invaluable for providing information about a historical event, but they don't teach us how historians write history.

 

Why use primary sources?

Students need to work with primary sources in order to understand the process by which we interpret history and to think like historians.  Students need to use higher level critical thinking skills to judge the level of truth in the information and find out what is being left out.

 

Primary sources provide valuable information and insights not often available in traditional textbooks or writings.  Letters and memoirs often provide a personalized or emotional reaction to an event or circumstance.  They provide readers with a full understanding of the human condition and conflicting issues that arise from historical events and the actions of individuals.  They provide insights about the lifestyles, living conditions, opinions, viewpoints, and prejudices among people in different locales throughout time.

 

Using Caution

Because of the inherent belief among many that "anything presented in it's original form must be true" it is important to understand that primary sources, like oral historical accounts, are subject to the perceptions and biases of their creators.  Students need to understand that all primary sources reflect an author's interpretation of past events.

 

Just as the content of primary sources can reveal a great deal of historical information about people and places in the past, information that may be "missing" from documents, often indicates a particular bias or interpretation of ideas and events.  Laws and statutes that exclude women and minorities often reflect the attitudes of policy makers of the time.  Artwork, literature, and documentaries that depict one particular subculture over another as heroic or altruistic may promote unwarranted sterotyping and prejudicial behavior.

 

Most historians and educators agree that careful analysis of a variety of primary sources is critical in gaining a full perspective of the causes and effects, conflicts and compromises, and issues and events that have shaped our history and continue to effect our lives today.  The historical process enables students to develop the critical thinking skills necessary to question, interpret, and evaluate the many information sources and challenges they will face throughout their lives.  An educated, responsible citizenry needs to understand how point of view and bias affects evidence.  As we are immersed in the modern "age of information" we must be able to recognize how contradictions and limitations within any contemporary source affects the reliability and use of information needed to maintain a free society.

Questioning Techniques for Using Primary Sources

 

Students should be encouraged to ask and answer questions about any primary source.  Examples of questions that they should ask and answer are:

Who was the author and what do we know about this person?  Who was meant to see the primary source?

 

What kind of primary source is it? Is it in its original form?  What can we learn from the physical form of the primary source? (marks, handwriting)

 

Where is the primary source from? Is it a translation?

 

When was the primary source made, and how much time elapsed between the event and the time it was recorded?  What was going on at the time?

 

Why was the primary source made?  Was it meant to be private or public?  What was its purpose?

 

Is there any information missing from the document?

Where can primary sources be found?

 

Primary sources can be found in a number of locations

Locally: Family attic, hope chest, photo album, safety deposit box, neighborhood library, church, courthouse, newspaper, historical society, and cemetery.

 

State: State library, archives, museums, and historical associations

 

Nationally: National library, archives, museums, and historical associations

IDEAS FOR USING PRIMARY SOURCES

IDEAS FOR UNDERSTANDING HOW AND WHY WE USE PRIMARY SOURCES:

Start With What They Know...

Introduce students to primary sources by asking them to collect and share materials they may already possess, such as birth certificates, social security cards, passports, drivers' licenses, report cards, collectibles, or photographs.  Ask students to identify information about themselves, other individuals, and the society in which they live based on the primary sources collected.  How might these sources be used by historians in describing people in the future?  Discuss how school, employment, medical, and family records could be used to develop generalizations about life in today's society.

 

Create a Time Capsule

Divide the class into groups of four to five students each.  Ask students to collect a variety of primary sources that "accurately" reflect the issues, events, and lifestyles of individuals in their local community, their region, their state, or even their country.  Sources should be governmental and private.

 

Assist students in identifying various locations for collecting current census figures, government files, newspapers, artifacts, personal diaries, and interviews with longtime residents.  Investigate local, state, and national historical societies, archives, and museums.  When each group has completed their investigative work, redistribute each time capsule to a new group.  Ask each group to critically analyze the contents of the "unknown" capsule to make the following conclusions:

What do the contents of the time capsule tell you about the issues, events, lifstyles, and belief systems of the individuals of that particular society?

What information is missing?

Does the time capsule provide a complete picture of the society?  Why or why not?

 

It's Their Word Against Mine...

Assist students in understanding the complexities of accurately documenting information by engaging them in the following activitiy.  Ask a student, parent, or staff member from your school (preferably someone unrecognizable by students) to walk into the classroom and inconspicuously remove an object from the front of the classroom.  After the individual has left, ask students to describe, in writing, the event that just occurred and the physical description of the "thief," without conferring with other students.  Ask students to share responses and address the following questions:

What just occurred?

What was the individual wearing?

What prompted his/her actions?

Are there any differences in the descriptions of the event that just occurred and the individual involved?

Speculate as to the reasons why differences may exist?

What does this exercise tell you about the interpretation of history from one source?

What strategies should be employed to accurately interpret events in history?

IDEAS FOR USING WRITTEN RECORDS

Through Reading and Writing Activities:

Analyzing Documents

The Chicago Neighborhood History Project sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities has identified the following strategies for analyzing documents:

 

A.  Identifying the Document

1.  Author or source

2.  Title

3.  Date

4.  Type of document

5.  Proper bibliographic enttry for the document

 

B.  Putting the Document in Context

1.  Suggest two or three appropriate titles for this primary source

2.  Describe the purpose of the document or its intended audience.  Why was it written?

3.  Select some direct quotes or cite some specific data from the document which help explain its purpose.

4.  Where would you look for additional documents of this type?

 

C.  Using the Document

1.  List the most important pieces of information conveyed by the document

2.  What questions does the document suggest?

 

D.  Evaluating the Document

1.  Is the document reliable?  List any suspected errors or misleading statements in the document.

2.  Make a statement about the general utility of the document for your particular interest.

 

E.  Other Important Information

1.  A document may provide answers to questions about a topic.  However, it should also provoke new questions.  Be alert for these new possibilities and be sure to write them down.

2. Try not to draw final conclusions based on the analysis of only one document.  Remember, documents are only one type of authority used in the study of a topic.  Always use as many different sources as possible.

 

Other document analysis worksheets can be found at the National Archives:

http://www.nara.gov/education/teaching/analysis/analysis.html

 

 

Double Entry or Dialectical Journal

Students react to the document by making a dialectical journal.  Fold a paper in half lengthwise.  On the left side, the student will write quotations of their choice from the text or those suggested by the teacher.  On the right side, students will react to the quotations by evaluating information, reacting to the material, suggesting questions, making personal connections, and interpreting the information.  Other alternatives may include:

Metacognitive Journal

Divide the paper in half lengthwise.  Label the right side "What I Learned" and the right side "How I Came to Learn It."

Speculation About Effects

Divide the paper in half lengthwise.  Label the right side "What Happened," and the left side "What might/should happen as a result of this?"

 

Echo Reading

This is a method for students to access a diffucult piece of text.  Pair students together and ask one student to read the text while the second student reads along silently and then orally paraphrases what the first students has said.

 

Found Poem

Place students into groups of four.  Give each member of each group a copy of a written record and ask them to read it carefully.  Then ask them to underline phrases of four or five words that they particularly like for meaning, langugae, or imagery.  Give each student four strips of paper and ask them to write one phrase on each strip of paper.  Then ask the group to take their strips of paper and arrange them into a poem (it is not necessary to use every strip of paper).  Tell them not to worry about repeating phrases because they can be used to add emphasis by repetitions.  When their poem has a pleasing arrangement, ask them to copy it onto a piece of poster paper, title it, and decorate it for the class.

 

Gallery Walk

In this form of a gallery walk, the teacher places short written records and chart paper at different stations.  Each group spends a specified amount of time at each station examining the record and reacting to it by writing on the chart paper.  Reactions include interpretation, paraphrasing, questions, and analysis.  When time is called they move on to another station.  After the rounds have been made, one member of the group at each of the stations shares the comments written on the chart paper.

 

Historic Newspapers

Using primary sources for information, ask students to create a secondary source newspaper to depict the various issues and events during a specific historical period.  Include news articles, human interest stories, editorials, politial cartoons, letters to the editor, and classified sections.  Encourage students to cite accurate information and use formatting techniques from the time.

 

"I Am" Poem

Ask students to assume the persona of a character from a primary source.  Possible frames for the poem may include the following:

I am

I wonder

I hear

I see

I want

I am

 

I understand

I say

I dream

I try

I hope

I am

 

Jigsaw

This is a good strategy for analyzing long records.  Assign each member of a cooperative group to a different expert group.  Each expert group will study a portion of the written record to analyze.  Reassemble students in their original groups to share infomation.

 

KWL

Students divide their paper into three parts and head each column with K, W, and L.  Prior to the learning process, ask students to record what they know about the topic under the column identified as K.  As you progress through the various learning activities, ask students to think about and record what they know about the topic under the column W.  At the conclusion of the learning, ask students to record what they have learned under the column L. The KWL chart can be a valuable tool for teachers in identifying prior knowledge, realizing students learning needs and desires to learn more, and assessing learning outcomes.

 

Paraphrase It

After reading a written record, ask individual students or pairs of students to paraphrase it in their own words either orally or in writing.

 

Project-based Learning

Create hands-on projects to enhance learning.  Examples may include:

Produce a craft from period of time depicted in a primary source.

Create a diorama to illustrate an event in history.

Design postcards from a different place and time.

Reconstruct scenes from a primary source.

Create a mobile depicting different facets or themes.

 

Quickwrite

Students are asked to write for 2 or 3 minutes in reaction to a written record.  If students run out of ideas to write about, they are asked to repeat writing the last word over again until a new idea comes to mind.

 

RAFT

RAFT stands for Role, Audience, Form, and Time.  When writing a RAFT, students assume a Role and write about a subject to a particular Audience.  The Form of the written record is usually suggested by the teacher.  Possible Forms are: newspaper articles, diary entries, letters, interviews, speeches, or other written documents.  The T stands for time or tense.  Will it be written at the time of the record or later?  An example of a RAFT is using a first hand account of Louis XVI's execution during the French Revolution, a student writes a newspaper account for an audience of Revolutionaries the day after the event.  By writing to different audiences, students learn to look at historical events from different points of view.

 

Reciprocal Reading

In order to gain a deeper understanding of a written record, ask two students to read to each other.  One student asks questions that come to mind, and the second student then answers as many questions as possible.  The roles are then reversed.  Students stop at the end of strategic parts and summarize what they have learned about the written record in a joint writing assignment.

 

Reflection

Reflection of a story extends beyond wishful or superficial undertstandings.  By reflecting on the lives of the people in a primary source, students learn to search for and find solutions which caused the problem instead of restating the facts or responding superficially.  Students learn to reflect on life by writing about solutions for the problems and challenges that occur in the lives of people living in any society.

 

Return Letter

After reading a primary source letter, have the students answer the letter with their reactions, comments and questions.  Ask them to quote portions of the letter and make specific comments on those parts.  Students may want to mimic the style of the author and even some of the letter writing conventions that they used to fold the letter and seal it.

 

Spider Webbing

After reading a written record, ask students to write down ideas that are interesting, things they don't understand, and intriguing ideas in the question form.  Ask students to choose one question they would like to explore in depth and place it in the center of their paper.  This question becomes the center of the "web" with lines radiating from it with their conjectures, possible explanations, more questions, tangent ideas, etc.  Students discuss their webs in cooperative groups.

 

Tableau

Some documents, like diary entries or narratives about journeys in letters, generate visual images.  Ask a group of students to create a tableau, or frozen picture, of a scene from a written record, and then have a student read an appropriate passage from the primary source as narration.  For example,  after reading an account of dining in a colonial house, students will recreate the description using school tables and artifacts recreated from paper and cardboard.

 

Timelines

Students create timelines as a type of graphic organzier in which the chronological relationship of events depicted in a primary source.

 

Venn Diagrams

Students create overlapping circles known as Venn Diagrams to chart similarities and differences between people, events, places,  etc.  Distinct or contrasting features are listed in the outer circles, and the similar features are written in the overlapping section(s).

 

 

Through Art and Dramatization:

Character Reenactment

Identify a particular individual for historical study.  Advise students to use a variety of primary sources to gain a full understanding of the complexities of the historical figure, enabling them to accurately portray the character in historical dialogue, a skit, or other form of dramatization.  Primary sources for information may include documents, letters, diary entries, personal journals, and photographs.

 

Debate Between Historical Characters

Engage students in a debate between historical figures surrounding actual events or hypothetical scenarios.  For example, ask students conduct research, using primary sources to:

reenact the historic debates between Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas

recreate a hypothetical debate between Abraham Lincoln and the mother of a Confederate soldier

role play a hypothetical dialogue or debate between members of the same family who hold opposing allegiances to Confederate and Union causes.

create hypothetical dialogue or debate between Jefferson Davis.  President of the Confederacy and a member of the NAACP in today's society

 

Documentary

Encourage students to explore their creative "juices" by producing a documentary around a specific historical character, event, or issue.  Using primary sources as references, allow students to use the following mediums to accurately portray people and events of the past:

video

dramatization

movie

slide show

power point presentation

website

 

Hot Seat

Ask one student to play the role of the author or a primary source.  Ask other students to formulate questions for the author.  Based on reserach and analysis of primary sources, the author responds to each question asked.

 

Open Mind

After examining a primary source, ask students to draw an outline of a head.  Inside the outline write and draw what the author of a source thinks, says, and feels in words and pictures.

 

Puppet Shows

Ask students to construct simple stick puppets using "paper doll cut outs" or other materials.  Students perfom puppet shows.

 

Readers Theatre

Readers Theatre is a performance read aloud by students.  The script is written by the students with the help of their teacher.  Students create a dramatic performance by examining primary sources and extracting or creating dialogue between historical characters.

 

Storyboard

Give each student a piece of blank, unlined paper.  Ask them to fold it once vertically and once horizontally through the center making four rectangles of equal size.  After reading the primary source, tell them to write one main idea from the reading at the top of each rectangle and illustrate it with a picture or symbols.  Then have them write a suitable quotation from the reading at the bottom of every rectangle.

 

Talking with Historical Characters

Identify a particular individual for historical study.  Ask students to examine a variety of primary sources to gain a full understanding of the opinions or viewpoints held by the historical character on a specific topic.  Ask students to react to the character's viewpoints by constructing a letter, creating an interview situation, writing a poem, or using interactive journals.  Correspondences with historical characters should include reactions, responses, pointed questions and requests for more information.  Based on gathered reserach, ask students to hypothetically respond to questions "through the eyes of the historical character".

 

Visualization

After reading a written record, ask students to draw a picture of images suggested.  For example, student may read an excerpt from the journals of Lewis and Clark and then draw a picture of one of the events described.

 

 

 

Examples for Studying Different Facets of History/Social Science:

Migration Patterns

Identify a specific location for the study of migration patterns.  Collect a number of census reports encompassing various periods of time.  Ask students to critically read the data to make conclusions about the following:

How has the population density changed over time?

Describe other changes concerning the demographic make-up of the community.

Describe changes concerning occupations, socio-economic status of individuals, size of families, and living conditions over time.

What circumstances, natural or man made may have occurred to influence the changes identified above?

Reflecting upon the census process recently conducted, speculate as to the authenticity of the findings.  Do you believe all groups were accurately identified?  Why or why not?

What circumstances may have effected the authenticity of census data collection in the past?

What suggestions can you made to improve the authenticity of census reports?

 

Public Policies Past and Present

Identify a particular social, economic, or political issue in present society that has prompted the establishment of a public policy.  Examples may include issues of homelessness, vandalism, education, trade, monopolies, voting, or legislation.  Collect public policy documents that address the identified public issue in the present and from the past.  Ask students to analyze and compare the various policies throughout time in order to make the following conclusions:

According to public policy, how was the identified public problem or issue addressed in the past?

How is it addressed today?

Describe the changes

What issues, events, or belief systems have transpired that may have prompted changes in attitudes and policies in addressing the same public issue or problem over time?

 

Geography

(Click onto Strategies for Integrating Geographic Literacy for ideas and strategies for integrating geography into historical study)

Map Analysis

Information provided by maps often influences important decisions in political, social, and economic arenas.  By examining maps, students can gain insight about the knowledge base of cartographers, explorers, politicians and others regarding the geographical features of a specific location over time.

 

For example, by examining a world map available to Christopher Columbus before his first voyage, students can readily see how his "discovery" of land was easily mistaken as the entryway to the East Indies.  Throughout the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, maps reflecting the travels of European explorers and settlers depicted North America with increased accuracy, not as a continent that physically grew in size over time.  Political maps that depict changing boundaries provide much information about policies, events, and issues that occurred throughout history.  When presenting maps as primary sources for historical study, ask students the following questions:

When was this map drawn?

What area is depicted in the map?

Why do you suppose this map was drawn?  What purpose did it serve?

What political, social, or economic events or issues were influential in drawing the map?

What clues can you find on the map that provides information about the perceptions, culture, or viewpoints of the cartographer?

How might this map be used to influence political decisions?

Compare this map with a map of the same area from another time period.  What conclusions can you make about changes you may see?

 

 

 

IDEAS FOR USING ARTIFACTS:

Artifacts provide a tangible, hands-on approach to historical reserach that is especially valuable for kinesthetic learners.  They can provide valuable insights into human behaviors and experiences and can stimulate interest in literature and further study.

 

Analyzing Artifacts

The American Association for State and Local History has identified the following questioning strategies when evaluating artifacts:

1. Reading with your hands. Touch the artifact.  How was it made?

2. How was it used? Practical function of the artifact within society.  The physical act of using the artifact will make students more sensitive to the artifact and others like it.

3. What was its environment? Place the artifact in an environment of related artifacts with which it would have been used, such as historic site or historic site representation.

4. How did it develop through time? Put the artifact into a chronology.  Compare it with similar modern day artifacts.

5.  What other cultures had or currently have artifacts? Make comparisons with similar artifacts of other cultures.  Certain artifacts of certain cultures can tell a lot about the values of that culture.

6. How has this artifact been influenced?  Influence in design and decoration are partly related to practical use, partly the result of historical development, partly the result of a changing environment and partly decided by cultural traditions.

7. Does the artifact have functional meanings or values?  Wherever there are deeply rooted aesthetic, mythical, or iconological values or whenever people express feelings about an object, the function of that object is more than practical.

 

Archeological Digs

Collect a number of artifacts from specific time period.  Recreate an archeological experience for students by burying artifacts in a dirt plot or bin.  Divide the plot into quadrants or subplots.  Divide students into groups and assign specific tasks for each member of the group (diggers, sifters, recorders).  Demonstrate how to carefully "dig" for artifacts using trowels, brushes, and screening devices.  Ask students to record specific information about each item retrieved including its location in the plot, its depth within the plot, a sketch of the item, its weight, and dimensions.

 

Mystery Kits

Collect a variety of artifacts distinctive to a particular region and period of time.  Allow students to carefully handle artifacts to make predictions about the culture and people represented.

 

Grandmother's Trunk

Collect a variety of artifacts that represent a series of events that have occurred over a period of time revolving around a single person or community.  Careful examination can demonstrate how change occurs around the experiences of one person or community and how information in a family can be passed down from one generation to another.  Artifacts should represent events in the individual's life as well as events surrounding the family, community, city, state, nation, and the world.

 

Historical Time Capsule

Ask students to collect a variety of primary sources that "accurately" reflect the issues, events, and lifestyles of individuals from a particular time in history.  Sources should be governmental and private.  Assist students in identifying various locations for collecting census figures, government files, newspapers, artifacts, personal diaries, and interviews.  Investigate local, state, and national historical societies, archives, and museums.  Ask students to critically analyze the contents of the capsule to make the following conclusions:

What do the contents of the time capsule tell you about the issues, events, lifestyles, and belief systems of that particular society during that particular time in history?

What information is missing?

Does the time capsule provide a complete picture of the society?  Why or why not?

 

 

 

ideas for using historical visuals

The image portrayed in a photo, sketch, painting, cartoon, sculpture, or other visual often reflects the interpretation, background, and interest of the artist.  Careful observation and critical questions can prompt inquiry and further research into specific fields of study depicted in the image.

 

Analyzing Visuals

Effective questioning may include:

What was your immediate impression?  Who and what do you see?  What feelings does it evoke in you?

Describe what is happening: Is there anything significant in the background of the image?

Describe the people: Does the image reflect physical intimacy or distance? Analyze the body language of the individuals and/or the group? What moods or emotions are depicted.  Pay careful attention to placement of body parts, general body posture, and facial expressions.

Geographical Information: Where is the place or location of the image? Is it commonly found or unique?  Describe the landscape in terms of terrain, climate, vegetation, animal life, and other physical features.

Use of the Land: How is the landscape used? Does the evidence suggest long or short-term utilization? Is there evidence of trade, urbanization, transportation, communication, or technology?  If present, what does the architecture suggest regarding building materials, use of labor, lifestyles, sophistication and the influence of design.

Political Climate: Are there visible boundaries or barriers?  Is there evidence of government in operation, symbols, constraints, or ownership systems in place.

Change: Is there evidence of change over time?

Personal Connectedness: What "moves" you about this image?  What memories or experiences does it stir in you?  Is there anything that disturbs you?  How do you identify with the people in the image?  How are you alike?  How are you different?  Would you want to associate with the people in the image as a friend or family member?  Why or why not?

 

Before and After

After studying and discussing a photo or picture from a historic event, ask students to draw a picture about what happened before and after the event was recorded.

 

Changing Technology

Study the change in technology over time by selecting a subject like communication, transportation, medicine, home appliances, etc.  Collect old photographs that show this subject by searching the Internet (Library of Congress http://www.loc.gov and the National Archives http://www.nara.gov), the library, and textbooks.  Study these photographs and discuss the technology and how it worked, how these changes affected people's daily lives, health, etc.

 

Daily Life

Distribute to each student a picture of people in the past doing ordinary things (picnicking, shopping, working, etc.).  Ask students to describe the sounds, smells, sights, feelings that might be conveyed through the picture(s).  Use student responses to make generaliztions about the setting, issues, and events that may have occurred during the period of time depicted in the picture(s).

 

Gallery Walk

Post different pictures around the room.  Ask students to walk around the room and select one or two pictures to examine.  Distribute a graphic organizer divided into four sections to each student.  Ask students to examine the picture and respond to the prompts in each of the four squares:

Description - give a detailed physical description of placement, color, etc.

Interpretation - speculate about what is happening in the picture.

Analysis - examine how placement, light, line, color, and missing items make a statement to the viewer.

Judgement - speculate about what the artist or photographer is trying to say.

 

Jigsaw Puzzle

Copy four pictures and cut them into irregular pieces.  Ask students to work in pairs to reassemble each picture.  After critically examining each piece, ask students to give an accurate description of the image.

 

Police Artist

Working in pairs, ask students to give a detailed oral description of a visual to their partner who is the "police artist".  The "police artist" sketches the picture as it is described.  Compare the completed sketch with the original.  Discuss the similarities and differences.

 

Sell It!

Use propaganda posters or advertisements to understand the issues, events, and lifestyles of people during different periods of time.  Ask students to answer:

What is the message?

Who is the message directed toward?

What tactics are used?

What information is conveyed?

Who endorses it?

 

Sequencing

Working in groups of 2 or 3, ask students to place a series of four visuals depicting the same subject over time into chronological order.  Ask students to describe what is happening in each picture and why they are placed in the order they are in.

 

Style

Collect  pictures depicting fashion, design, or architecture over time.  Speculate why changes may have occurred.  For example, change may have occurred because of the availability of certain raw materials, new discoveries, cultural influences, new manufacturing techniques, economic factors, changing philosophies, etc.

 

Tableau

Make an overhead transparency of a visual image of someone participating in an historic event.  Project the image on an overhead projector.  Ask a student to stand in front of the image and take on the role of the individual depicted.  Ask the student to convey his/her feelings as the historical character and respond to questions from other students.

A GREAT TEACHER IS NOT SIMPLY ONE WHO IMPARTS KNOWLEDGE TO HIS STUDENTS

BUT WHO AWAKENS THEIR INTEREST IN IT AND MAKES THEM EAGER TO PURSUE IT

FOR THEMSELVES.  HE IS A SPARK PLUG, NOT A FUEL PUMP.

~W.J. Berrill

ANALYZING A DOCUMENT

A.  IDENTIFYING THE DOCUMENT

1.  Author or source

2.  Title

3.  Date

4.  Type of document

5.  Proper biblographic entry for the document

B.  PUTTING THE DOCUMENT IN CONTEXT

1.  Suggest two or three appropriate titles for this primary source:

2.  Describe the purpose of the document or its intended audience.  Why was it written?

3.  Select some direct quotes or cite some specific data from the document which help explain its purpose.

4.  Where would you look for additional documents of this type?

NATIONAL ENDOWMENT FOR THE HUMANITIES

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WAYS TO LOOK AT AN ARTIFACT

1. Reading with your hands.

Touch the artifact

How was it made?

 

2. How was it used?

Practical fiction of the artifact within society.

The physical act of using the artifact will make students more sensitive to the artifact and others like it

 

3. What was its environment?

Place the artifact in an environment of related artifacts with which it would have been used such as and historic site or historic site representation.

 

4. How did it develop through time?

Put the artifact into a chronology.

Compare it with similar modern day artifacts.

 

5. What other cultures have or have had similar artifacts?

Make comparisons with similar artifacts of other cultures.

Certain artifacts of certain cultures can tell a lot about the values of that culture.

 

6. How has this artifact been influenced?

Influence in design and decoration are partly related to practical use, partly the result of historical development, partly the result of a changing environment and partly decided by cultural traditions.

 

7. Does the artifact have functional meanings and values?

Wherever there are deeply rooted aesthetic, mythical or iconolological values or whenever people express feelings about an object, the function of the object is more than practical.

 

 

 

AMERICAN ASSOCIATION FOR STATE AND LOCAL HISTORY

EDUCATION IS THE KEY TO UNLOCK THE GOLDEN DOOR OF FREEDOM.

~George Washington Carver

ARTIFACT ANALYSIS WORKSHEET

1. Type of artifact:  Describe the materials from which it was made: bone, pottery, wood, stone, leather, glass paper, cardboard, plastic, cotton, fur or other material.

2. Uses of the artifact:

     A.  What might it have been its use/purpose?

 B. Who might have used it?

 C. Where might it have been used?

 D. When might it have been used?

3. What does the artifact tell us about surfing in its culture?

     A.  What does it tell us about the technology of the time in which it was made and used?

 B. What does it tell us about the life and times of the people who made and used it?

 C. Can you name a similar item in use today?

4. Draw a picture, find a photograph or bring the artifact you listed in 3C above to class.

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PHOTOANALYSIS

To a great extent, what is experienced and seen in a photo is determined by the interpreter's background, interests, and expectations.  A professional photographer may focus on the composition of the photo and the quality of the print.  A medical doctor might notice and even diagnose a physical disability.  A psychoanalyst will undoubtedly look for personality charactertistics and interpersonal relationships.  Your attitude toward analyzing a photo is important, too, because if your expectation is narrow or limited, then little beyond the surface will be perceived, and nothing new will be learned.  But, if your are curious and open to the possibilitiy of learning, then photographs become rich resources of new insights.

 

The actual procedure of photoanalysis is basically one of careful observation, of asking and answering the right questions.  The right questions stimulate your eye contact and search, and - regardless of your prior orientation - the right questions, those that are resourceful, relevant, and provocative, govern the information you obtain.

 

The following questions and instructions are suggestive; they are by no means complete.  They are offered to stimulate your perceptions, to demonstrate the wide range of possible experiences while analyzing a photo, and to give you a basic idea of the step-by-step process of photoanalysis you can apply to any photograph.

 

-What is your immediate impression?  Who and what do you see?  What feelings does it evoke in you?

 

-What is happening in the photo?  Is the background against which the photo was taken of any significance?

 

-What do you notice about the physical intimacy or distance?  Are the people touching physically?  How are they touching?  How do the people in the photo feel about their bodies?  Are they using their bodies to show them off?  To hide behind?  Are they proud of their bodies?  Ashamed?  What do you notice about the various parts of each person?  Pay particular attention to the face, always the most expressive part of a person.  Look carefully at the general body posture, and then the hands, the legs, the arms, the face, the eyes, the mouth.  What does each part tell you?  Are the parts harmonious or are there inconsistencies?

 

-What do you notice about the emotional state of each person?  Is he; shy, compliant, aloof, proud, fearful, mad, suspicious, introspective, superior, confused, happy, anxious, angry, weak, pained, suffering, bright, curious, distant, blank, bored, rigid, arrogant, content, lonely, trusting, strong, crazy, involved, frustrated, attractive, docile, bemused, correct, friendly, hurt, spontaneous, satisfied, depressed?

 

-If there is more than one person in the photo, what do you notice about the group mood - the gestalt of the group?  Is there harmony or chaos?  How do the people relate?  Are they tense or relaxed?  What are their messages toward each other?  Who has the power?  The grace?  Do you see love present?

THE HIGHEST RESULT OF EDUCATION IS TOLERNCE.

~Helen Keller

GENERIC QUESTIONs WHEN VIEWING A PICTURE

The following questions are offered as samples of the type that can be used with almost any slide or picture of a place.  Any individual question can and should trigger an entire period of discussion.  Any set or group of questions can begin a posthold discussion of that aspect of geography.  Ideally, after the students get the hang of observing everything in the landscape, they, not the teacher should be asking these questions.

 

 

PLACE

Where is this place?  Could it be anywhere else?  Where?  Is it commonly found or unique?  Is it part of a region?  Why or why not?  What is a region?  Can you describe or define this region?  What might be the boundaries of this place or region?  Does anyone live here?  Who?  Can you describe the people?  How?  How many people live in this place?  Why do you suppose people chose this place to live?  Why is this place urban (or rural)?

 

 

LANDSCAPE

Is this place flat or mountainous, wet or dry, natural or altered by man?  What types of physical features are visible?  What other natural features do you see?  What vegetation?  What animal life?  What resources?  From where was this photo taken?  Why do you think the photographer used that angle?  What are its advantages and limitations?  Is this photo better than a map of this area for any reasons?  What?

 

 

LANDSCAPE UTILIZATION

What is going on here?  How is the landscape used?  Is there evidence of man?  Does the evidence suggest long or short-term utilization, how long or short and what is your evidence?  What are the products of this place?  What are its surpluses and shortages?  What must probably be imported?  What exported?  Is there evidence of trade?  What is the evidence?  What percent of the population might be engaged in trade?  What is probably traded?  To and from where?

 

URBANIZATION

Is there evidence or urbanization, if not here, nearby?  What is necessary for urbanization?  Do you see those things here?  Is this a potential urban site?  What is the acreage and population density?  What percent of the land is used for what purposes?  What evidence is there of industry?  What do you suppose is produced?  From where do the raw materials come for the industry of this area?  To where are finished goods marketed?  What level of technology is evident?

 

 

LINKAGES

What linkages are visible?  What is the level of sophistication of these linkages?  Are there power lines, railroads, airports, road, boats, TV antenna or other relics of transportation or communication that are visible?  What percent of the landscape is used for them?  What is their significance to the people who live here?  Are there machines?  What types?  How old are they?  What are they used for?  What is the primary type of transportation?

CIVILIZATION IS A RACE BETWEEN EDUCATION AND CATASTROPHE.

~H.G. Wells

ANALYZE A PHOTOGRAPH

MEET THE PHOTO.

Quickly scan the photo.  What do you notice first?

Type of photo (check all that apply):

Portrait

Landscape

Aerial/Satellite

Action

Architectural

Event

Family

Panoramic

Posed

Candid

Documentary

Selfie

Other

Is there a caption?

yes

no

observe its parts.

List the people, objects and activities you see.

pEOPLE

OBJECTS

ACTIVITIES

Write one sentence summarizing this photo.

TRY TO MAKE SENSE OF IT.

Answer as best you can.  The caption, if available, may help.

Who took this photo?

Where is it from?

When is it from?

What was happening at the time in history this photo was taken?

Why was it taken?  List evidence from the photo or your knowledge about the photographer that led you to your conclusion.

USE IT AS HISTORICAL EVIDENCE.

What did you find out from this photo that you might not learn anbywhere else?

What other documents, photos, or historical evidence are you going to use to help you understand this event or topic?

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PHOTO ANALYSIS WORKSHEET

OBSERVATION:

Study the photograph for 2 minutes.  Form an overall impression of the photograph and then examine individual items.  Next, divide the photo into quadrants and study each section to see what new details become visible.

Use the chart below to list people, objects, and activities in the photograph.

pEOPLE

OBJECTS

ACTIVITIES

INFERENCE:

Based on what you have observed above, list three things you might infer form this photograph.

QUESTIONS:

What questions does this photograph raise in your mind?

Where could you find answers to them?

Write a question to the photographer that is left unanswered by this photograph.

NATIONAL ARCHIVES

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CARTOON ANALYSIS WORKSHEET

VISUALS

WORDS (NOT ALL CARTOONS

INCLUDE WORDS)

 1.  List the objects or people you see in the cartoon.

 1.  Identify the cartoon caption and/or title.

 2.  Locate three words or phrases used by the cartoonist to identify objects or people within the cartoon.

3.  Record any important dates or numbers that appear in the cartoon.

STEP ONE

 2. Which of the objects on your list are symbols?

 3.  What do you think each symbol means?

4.  Which words or phrases in the cartoon appear to be the most significant?  Why do you think so?

 5.  List adjectives that describe the emotions portrayed in the cartoon.

STEP TWO

A.  Describe the action taking place in the cartoon.

B.  Explain how the words in the cartoon clarify the symbols.

C.  Explain the message of the cartoon.

D.  What special interest groups would agree/disagree with the cartoon's message?  Why?

STEP THREE

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ANALYZE A CARTOON

MEET THE CARTOON.

Quickly scan the cartoon.  What do you notice first?

What is the title or caption?

observe its parts.

words

VISUALS

Are there labels, descriptions thoughts, or dialogs?

List the people,  objects, and places in the cartoon

List the actions or activities

TRY TO MAKE SENSE OF IT.

words

VISUALS

Which words or phrases are the most significant

List adjectives that describe the emotions portrayed.

Who drew this cartoon?

Which of the visuals are symbols

What do they stand for?

When is it from?

What was happening at the time in history it was created?

What is the message?  List evidence from the cartoon or your knowledge about the cartoonist that led you to your conclusion.

USE IT AS HISTORICAL EVIDENCE.

What did you find out from this cartoon that you might not learn anywhere else?

What other documents or historical evidence are you going to use to help you understand this event or topic?

NATIONAL ARCHIVES

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POSTER ANALYSIS WORKSHEET

 1. What are the main colors used in the poster?

 2.  What symbols (if any) are used in the poster?

3.  If a symbol is used, is it

    a. clear (easy to interpret)?

    b.  memorable?

    c.  dramatic?

 4.  Are the messages in the poster more visual or verbal?

 5.  Who do you think is the intended audience for the poster?

 6.  What does the government hope that the audience will do?

 7.  What purpose(s) are served by the poster?

 8.  The most effective posters use symbols that are unusual, simple, and direct.  Is this an effective poster?

NATIONAL ARCHIVES

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HOW DO I CONDUCT AN ORAL HISTORY INTERVIEW?

YOUR PROJECT

When planning a project you will have to ask yourself the following questions:  Why am I doing this?  What will the end result be?  How many people should be involved?  What sort of resources are available?  Who should I interview?  You will also have to gain access to some recording equipment and learn how to use it.

 

Who should you interview? Try to get a good cross-section of the population you are looking at - men/women, workers/management, clerical/engineering etc.  Bear in mind that someone who is shy and retiring may have just as much to say as the louder, more outgoing person.  Estimate the amount of people you will interview.  Take into account the time you will spend planning, conducting, and writing up each interview.

 

Contacts can be made by word of mouth, through the media, or via local groups.  One interview often leads to another by word of mouth, although you may not wish to go too far down this road as, depending on your project, you may want to seek out people with different points of view and different backgrounds.

 

 

BEFORE THE INTERVIEW

If possible, a preliminary telephone call will enable you to chat to your interviewee briefly about the subjects you want to cover, arrange where and when your interview will be, and make sure they can identify you and you them.  You can also decide how much time is available to you both.

 

Should you do any research before the interview?  You should certainly know something about the subject you are going to talk about.  If the subject is your local village then you probably won't need to do any extra research, but if it's beekeeping it would be polite and useful to have a quick look through a book on the subject.  The only danger with knowing something about the topic is that you may not ask certain questions because you think you already know the answer.

 

Finally, before you set off for your interview, make sure you have told someone where you are going and when you expect to be back.  Your safety is very important and if at any time you feel uncomfortable in a situation, you should make your excuses and leave.

 

 

THE INTERVIEW

Have you got everything?  Directions to where you are going; recording equipment (including microphone); power supply/batteries; cassettes/mini discs; paperwork; something to prove your identity.

 

First impressions are important.  If you are presentable and polite it will make a big difference to the proceedings.  Chat before the interview but try to avoid the interviewee telling you any anecdotes that would be better told during the recording.

 

 

STARTING THE INTERVIEW

Check your interviewing environment - is there a potential for sounds that will interfere with your recording?  Clinking tea cups, panting dogs?  chirping budgies, chiming clocks, even traffic passing by can disrupt a recording.  If possible, try and choose a quiet environment.  If you can, position the recording device out of sight of your interviewee.  Always test sound levels - this may alert you to any failing batteries or poor connections.  At the beginning of the interview you should record details of who you are talking to and when.  If you subsequently lose all the paperwork the basic information should be on the tape/disc.

 

 

ASKING QUESTIONS

A schedule or list of questions is a good idea at the start of a project although you may find you don't need one as time goes by.  Be careful not to stick to a list of questions too rigidly, let the conversation flow naturally.

 

Ask 'open' rather than 'closed' questions.  Easy to say but not always easy to do.  An expample of a closed question - a question which invites a yes/no answer- would be 'You felt terrible didn't you?'.  An 'open' question would be 'How did you feel?' followed up with, 'Why did you feel like that?' if necessary.

 

Use plain words and avoid suggesting the answers:.  'How did you feel about working as a housemaid?' rather than 'It must have been awful having to be a servant', and 'Can you describe your childhood?' rather than, 'I suppose your childhood was poor and unhappy?'

 

Maintain eye contact. This shows you are interested and enables you to encourage your interviewee with visual cues rather than speaking over the recording.

 

Clarify odd words or things you are not sure about - phrases like 'cutting the vamp' (the boot and shoe trade).  If you don't ask at the time you may never know!

 

Don't be afraid to ask, but don't interrupt or butt in.  Make a mental or physical note to ask later.  Particularly with older people, leave a pause at the end of their sentences as they may not have finished speaking.

 

Respect people's opinions even if you don't agree with them.  This is not the time for you to debate your political or cultural opinions with someone.

 

Be aware of tiredness - not just the exhausted 96 year old you have been grilling for three hours, but your own tiredness as well.  Take a break or come back another day.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AFTER THE INTERVIEW

If possible, it is polite to have a chat after the interview.  You can confirm any future appointments, explain what is going to happen to the interview, and say what the plans for your project are.

 

You should ask the interviewee to fill in the copyright form.  Label the cassettes/discs and write up a summary or a transcript of the interview.  Think about storing the material you have collected and make a copy of the tape/disc.  You could also write a letter of thanks to the interviewee and offer them a copy of the interview.

 

Above all, listen to the interviews you do with a critical ear and keep interviewing!

Peoples memories are not perfect.  It's easy to confuse events and dates, people and places.

If what you are told doesn't seem to make sense you should try to clarify it.  As an

interiewer you should be critical, but not confrontational.

Most importantly you should listen to what you are being told.

THE MORAL TEST GOVERNMENT IS HOW IT TREATS THOSE WHO ARE IN THE DAWN OF LIFE - CHILDREN;

THOSE WHO ARE IN THE TWILIGHT OF LIFE - THE AGED; AND THOSE WHO ARE IN THE SHADOWS OF

LIFE - THE SICK, THE NEEDY, AND THE HANDICAPPED.

~Hubert Horatio Humphrey (1911-1978)

Your story (oral history) is valuable for people doing research on the topic of

I hereby give to the ORAL HISTORY PROGRAM and/or UNIVERSITY ARCHIVES for such scholarly and educational uses and purposes as the Director(s) shall determine, the following tapes of interviews recorded on (dates)

Unless otherwise specified below, I place no restrictions on non-commercial access to and use of the interviews:

NAME (please print):

ADDRESS:

PHONE/EMAIL:

SIGNATURE OF INTERVIEWEE:

NAME OF INTERVIEWER (print):

PHONE/EMAIL:

ADDRESS:

SIGNATURE OF INTERVIEWER/DATE:

I wish no place the following restrictions on the use of recorded interviews:  Please check and initial those restrictions you wish to place on the use of your interview(s).

I wish to be identified by the pseudonym

I wish to restrict access to the materials until (date)

I wish to close specified portions of the interview, as noted on the attached document.

I wish to restrict access to materials to on-site use (i.e. exclude electronic distribution.

Other (specify:

I/We agree to abide by these restrictions:

 

Signed by:

 

Date:

 

Position:

 

Phone/email:

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CREATING A PODCAST EPISODE

A podcast is a kind of informational radio program broadcast over the internet.  The producers choose a topic they want to discuss in their episode.  They research the topic, choose a few key points they wish to include, write a script and then record their episode, which can then be shared with an auidence on the internet.

 

1.  Choose a resarch partner who will also be your co-host.

 

 

 

2.  Select an historical surf topic to research.

 

3.  Research your topic (use library books, websites, history textbooks, history magazines, newspaper articles and interview with historians).  Look for several key points you believe would interest and auidence.

 

4.  Just like a television program, each podcast has a unique name.  Often that name has some relationship with the content.  Since your podcast relates to surf history, you probably want to create a name that has an historical connection.

 

5. Write a script for a TWO-MINUTE audio podcast.  (See Podcast Planning Sheet)

 

 

INTRO:  A podcast episode begins with an introduction that welcomes the audience, gives the name of the show, gives the names of the hosts and mentions the topic of the show.

 

Examples:

 

  Welcome to Surf History Happens!  We're your hosts (name) and (name).

  Bringing the past to life is The State daily podcast for Friday, January 30th.  We're your hosts (name) and (name).

 

 

BODY OF SCRIPT:  Now you are ready to take the information you researched and turn it into and interesting script for your podcast.

 

Select 2 or 3 key points of interest from your research that you wish to discuss.  Each of these will become a paragraph (or two) of information you want to present to your auidence.  Consider:

 

  What does the auidence need to know to understand your topic?

  In what order should you put your information so it makes sense to the auidence?

  How do you connect each of your key points so they flow together well?

 

CONCLUSION:  You have presented your information and now you want to neatly conclude your episode.  Summarize your presentation in one or two concluding statements.

 

RECORDING:  Using the computer, record your podcast.

 

Be sure to:

  Practice your script with your partner multiple times.

  Speak slowly and clearly.  Your auidence does not have your script to read as you speak.

  Speak at a normal conversational volume.  If you are too quiet, you cannot be heard.

  Find a proper distance from the microphone to record your voice.  If you are too close, you may sound blurry.

  Divide your script into parts.  It's easier to go back and re-record one part than to re-record the entire thing.

  SAVE your podcast as your teacher directs.

 

 

THE COLONIAL WILLIAMSBURG FOUNDATION

Partners:

Topic

and

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PODCAST PLANNING

TOPIC:

PRODUCERS:

TITLE OF THE PODCAST:

KEY POINTS:

 1.

 

 

 2.

 

 

 3.

SCRIPT:

Greeting/Welcome/Introduction of Topic:

FIRST KEY POINT:

SECOND KEY POINT:

THIRD KEY POINT (if needed):

CONCLUSION:

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ACCESS LEARNING FOR ENGLISH LANGUAGE LEARNERS

INTRODUCTION

Unlike mathematics and science, heavy reliance on proficient language skills and the general lack of hands-on and manipulative activities in most History/Social Science classrooms, creates incredible challenges for English Language Learners (ELL) in accessing and learning abstract concepts.  Cause and effect, compare and contrast, evaluation, analysis, and synthesis of complex issues, events, and ideas are processes that are highly dependent upon background knowledge, content learning, critical thinking skills and high level language proficiency.  Unless teachers are sensitive to the educational background and language needs of second language learners, much of the valuable content of the History/Social Sciences will remain inaccessible and incomprehensible by students.

 

Below is a list of sheltered activities that can assist the classroom teacher in providing content that is comprehensible for second language learners.

 

Adjust Delivery

By adjusting the level of speech and simplifying input, the affective filter for learning is lowered and information can be more easily comprehended by non-native speakers:

  Repeat key words and phrases

  Speak slowly

  Pronounce words clearly

  Control vocabulary and use of idiomatic expressions

  Control the complexity and length of sentences

  Define words with double meanings

  Use body language, gestures, and facial expressions

  Use props, objects, and visual aids to convey meaning

 

 

Build Background Knowledge

Activating and building background knowledge helps students identify and relate to key concepts to be learned and helps teachers understand what it is students need to know and be able to do to reach the identified standard.  This can be accomplished through the following activities:

  Brainstorm what it is students already know about the topic

  Use study prints, posters, and other visuals to prompt discussions

  Use quickwire activities to allow for uninterrupted, free form writing of ideas

  Utilize Venn Diagrams to identify similarities and differences of ideas or events

 

Listening Techniques

  Tape record lessons for ELL students to replay more than once.

  Provide students an outline or notes before lectures.

  Provide "advance organizers" to help students focus on key ideas when listening to presentations.

  Face the class when speaking

  Write instructions on the chalkboard or overhead projector.

  Avoid overly-complex speaking patterns but do not speak abnormally slowly or loudly

  Demonstrate ideas and concepts whenever possible with the use of realia, visuals, media, gestures, and body language. Reference concrete objects and shared experiences

 

Speaking Techniques

  In oral discussions, allow extra time for responses from ELL students

  Provide "practice" time for students to respond orally

  Provide opportunities for ELL students to work in small groups with native English speakers

  Encourage ELL students to express their points of view and opinions on different issues

 

Reading Techniques

  Preview material in the student's native language

  Provide alternative reading material that is more comprehensible to students (easier editions of textbook, magazine articles, newspaper clippings, etc.)

  Re-write portions of textbook for easier reading

  Tape record portions of reading material for students to "read along" when working independently

  Read aloud selected passages.  Discuss and explain ideas and concepts as you go along

  Paraphrase and summarize key concepts and ideas

  Provide support materials (bilingual dictionaries, glossary of terms, target vocabulary lists, cloze activities, integrated language, contextual cues, etc.)

 

Writing Techniques

  Dictate sentences for students to write.  Include key vocabulary

  Ask students to maintain a vocabulary book or glossary.  Words, definitions, and native language translations should be added as new concepts are introduced

  Encourage students to use content area vocabulary in their written work

  Ask students to label items (diagrams, objects, maps, etc.).  Labeling helps students become familiar with items and their names

  Adjust expectations for writing based on language proficiency.  For example, students at beginning proficiency levels should focus writing on recall of "who, what, where, when, and why".  As proficiency increases, encourage writing at interpretive and evaluation levels.

  Ask students to outline written material

  Maintain Learning Logs or Double Entry Logs

Create reflective or synthesis journals

 

Other Instructional Strategies

  Directed Reading Thinking Activity (predict, read, prove)

  SQ4R (Survey, Question, Read, Recite, Record, and Review)

  Language Experience reading materials created by students for content learning

  Semantic Webbing/Graphic Organizers/Thinking Maps

  KWL charts

  Dramatization (Reader's Theatre, skits, plays, role play situations, character reenactments, etc.)

  Demonstrations

Games (flashcards, bingo, puzzles, etc.)

Use of Manipulatives and Multimedia Materials

  Artifacts, memorabilia, and collectibles

  Photographs and images

Charts and maps

Timelines

  Primary source documents (reports, records, newspapers, wills, letter, diaries, memoirs, etc.)

  Music

  Art

Filmstrips

Videotape

Technology

Integrate historical literature and picture books

Cooperative Learning

  Corners

  Inside-Outside Circles

Jigsaw

Numbered Heads Together

Pairs Check

Pairs Compare

Team Discussion

Team Web

Think-Pair-Share

Three-Step interview

  Service-learning.  Provide students with opportunities to perform community service related to history/social science    themes and concepts

  Independent work

  Provide students with a variety of assessment methods to demonstrate learning

A teacher is like a doctor; half the value of his care lies in the

confidence wish which one approaches him

~Stephan West

USING SHORT STORIES TO IMPROVE LITERACY

INTRODUCTION

It is generally understood in today's society that learning to read is the gateway to achieving future success.  The development of new reading programs, frameworks, and instructional strategies are continually being designed and updated to meet the literacy needs of all students.  According to Delaine Eastin, California State Superintendent of Public Instruction.  "Reading has been described as emancipation because it allows the mind access to all previously recorded human thought.  Its corollary, writing, allows us to communicate with the future.  And listening and speaking, tools of the present, allow us to connect with people throughout the world."

 

To be fully literature, readers must be able to do more than decode words, phrases, and sentences.  According to The Reading Report Card published by NAEP, 1985.  "Reading is analytic, interactive, constructive, and strategic...  To foster higher-level literacy skills is to place a new and special emphasis on thoughtful, critical elaboration of ideas and understandings drawn from the material students read and from what they already know."

 

And, as stated in Becoming a Nation of Readers, "The most logical place for instruction in most reading and thinking strategies is in social studies (History/Social Science) and science rather than in separate lessons about reading.  The reason is that the strategies are useful mainly when the student is grappling with important but unfamiliar content."

 

The mission and purpose of The American Reader for Students is centered on the overwhelming need of all students to become critical readers, analytic thinkers; culturally and historically literate with the skills, tools, and commitment to use the learnings from the past to enhance the future.  The short stories contained in the website are designed to personally involve students in the lives of young people from a different time and place.  Through the historical fiction narratives, students understand that history is made by people like themselves.  They provoke a profound sense of reality, character identification, and a commitment and desire to learn more, read more, and do more to shape and create a better world for the future without repeating the mistakes of the past.

 

There are a number of ways in which teacheres and parents can utilize the many stories contained in The American Reader for Students to reach these altruistic educational goals.  Below are just a few ideas for using the stories to improv literacy at many levels.

 

 

THROUGH READING AND WRITING ACTIVITIES:

  Double Entry or Dialectical Journal

Students react to a story by making a dialectical journal.  Fold a paper in half lengthwise.  On the left side, the student will write quotations of their choice from the story or those suggested by the teacher.  On the right side, students will react to the quotations by evaluating information, reacting to the material, suggesting questions, making personal connections, and interpreting the information.  Other alternatives may include:

Metacognitive Journal

Divide the paper in half lengthwise.  Label the right side "Write I Learned" and the right side "How I Came to Learn It."

Speculations About Effects

Divide the paper in half lengthwise.  Label the right side "What Happened," and the left side "What might/should happen as a result of this?"

 

 

  Echo Reading

Pair students together and ask one student to read the story while the second student reads along silently and then orally paraphrases what the first student has said.

 

 

  Found Poem

Place students into groups of four.  Give each member of each group a copy of a story and ask them to read it carefully.  Then ask them to underline phrases of four or five words that they particularly like for meaning, language, or imagery.  Give each student four strips of paper and ask them to write one phrase on each strip of paper.  Then ask the group to take their strips of paper and arrange them into a poem (it is not necessary to use every strip of paper).  Tell them not to worry about repeating phrases because they can be used to add emphasis by repetitions.  When their poem has a pleasing arrangement, ask them to copy it onto a piece of poster paper, title it, and decorate it for the class.

 

 

  Gallery Walk

In this form of a gallery walk, the teacher places stories and chart paper at different station.  Each group spends a specified amount of time at each station examining the story and reacting to it by writing on the chart paper.  Reactions include interpretation, paraphrasing, questions, and analysis.  When time is called they move on to another station.  After the rounds have been made, one member of the group at each of the stations shares the comments written on the chart paper.

 

  Historic Newspapers

Using stories as secondary sources for information, ask students to create a tertiary source newspaper to depict the various issues and events during a specific historical period.  Include news articles, human interest stories, editorials, political cartoons, letters to the editor, and classified sections.  Encourage students to cite accurate information and use formatting techniques from the time.

 

  “I Am” Poem

  Ask students to assume the persona of a character from a story.  Possible frames for the poem may include the following:

  I am

  I wonder

  I hear

  I see

  I want

  I am

 

  I understand

  I say

  I dream

  I try

  I hope

  I am

 

  Jigsaw

Assign students to a different expert group.  Each expert group will study and analyze a specific portion of a story.  Remember students in groups to share information.

 

  KWL

Students divide their paper into three parts and head each column with K, W, and L.  Prior to the learning process, ask students to record what they know about the topic addressed in the short story they are about to read under the column identified as K.  As students are reading the story, ask them to think about and record what they want to know about the topic under the column, W.  At the conclusion of the reading, ask students to record what they have learned under the column L.  The KWL chart can be a valuable tool for teachers in identifying prior knowledge, realizing students learning needs and desires to learn more, and assessing learning outcomes.

 

  Paraphrase It

After reading a story, as individual students or pairs of students to paraphrase it in their own words either orally or in writing.

 

  Popcorn Reading

Students read aloud portions of a story.  As one student finishes reading a portion of a story, another student automatically begins reading.  There is no set order of readers, rather the order is random as it with popping corn.

 

  Project-Based Learning

Create hands-on projects to enhance learning.  Examples may include:

Produce a craft from period of time depicted in a story.

Create a diorama to illustrate an event in a story.

Design postcards from a place and time depicted in a story.

Reconstruct scenes from a story.

Create a mobile depicting different facets or themes.

Decorate a book jacket.

 

  Quaker Reading

Students read a story silently and highlight words, phrases or sentences they feel are especially important or revealing.  In a large group, students randomly read aloud the portions they have selected as in a Quaker meeting, "as the spirit moves them."  Certain lines may be reread by the same or different individuals.

 

  Quickwrite

Students are asked to write for 2 or 3 minutes in reaction to a story.  If students run out of ideas to write about, they are asked to repeat writing the last word over again until a new idea comes to mind.

 

  RAFT

RAFT stands for Role, Audience, Form, and Time.  When writing a RAFT, students assume a Role and write about a subject to a particular Audience.  The Form of the written record is usually suggested by the teacher.  Possible Forms are: newspaper articles, diary entries, letters, interviews, speeches, or other written documents.  The T stands for time or tense.  Will it be written at the time of the record or later?  An example of a RAFT concerns the use of a narrative description of a slave auction to writes a newspaper account for an audience of abolitionists the day after the event.  By writing to different audiences, students learn to look at historical events from different points of view.

 

  Reciprocal Reading

In order to gain a deeper understanding of a story ask two students to read to each other.  One student asks questions that come to mind, and the second student then answers as many questions as possible.  The roles are then reversed.  Students stop at the end of strategic parts and summarize what they have learned about the story in a joint writing assignment.

 

  Reflection

Reflection of a story extends beyond wishful or superficial understandings.  By reflecting on the lives of the people in a story, students learn to search for and find solutions which caused the problem instead of restating the facts or responding superficially.  Students learn to reflect on life by writing about solutions for the problems and challenges that occur in the lives of people living in any society.

 

  Spider Webbing

After reading a story, ask students to write down ideas that are interesting, things they don't understand, and intriguing ideas.  Ask students to choose one question they would like to explore in depth and place it in the center of their paper.  This question becomes the center of the "web" with lines radiating from it with their conjectures, possible explanations, more questions, tangent ideas, etc.  Students discuss their webs in cooperative groups.

 

  Tableau

Stories often generate visual images.  Ask a group of students to create a tableau, or frozen picture of a scene from a story, and then read an appropriate passage from the story as narration.  For example, after reading an account of dining in a colonial house, students will recreate the description using school tables and artifacts recreated from paper and cardboard.

 

  Timelines

Students create timelines as a type of graphic organizer in which the chronological relationship of events depicted in a story or several stories is shown.

 

  Venn Diagrams

Students create overlapping circles known as Venn Diagrams to chart similarities and differences between people, events, places, etc.  Distinct or contrasting features are listed in the outer circles, and the similar features are written in the overlapping section(s).

 

 

 

THROUGH ART AND DRAMATIZATION:

  Character Reeanctment

Identify a particular individual for historical study.  Advise students to use a variety of primary sources to gain a full understanding of the complexities of the historical figure, enabling them to accurately portray the character in historical dialogue, a skit, or other form of dramatization.  Primary sources for information may include documents, letters, diary entries,  personal journals, and photographs.

 

  Debate Between Characters

Engage students in a debate between historical characters depicted in a story.  Identify a specific issue that may arise during the period of time depicted in the story and ask students to debate different the different perspectives "through the eyes of the characters in the story."

 

  Documentary

Encourage student to explore their creative "juices" by producing a documentary around a specific historical character, event, or issue.  Using primary and secondary sources as references, allow students to use the following mediums to accurately portray people and events of the past:

videotape

dramatization

movie

slide show

power point presentation

web site

 

  Historic Dialogue - Choose two or more characters from a story and create dialogue that may occur in the setting of the story.

 

  Hot Seat - Ask a student to assume the personality of a character in a story.  Ask other students to formulate questions for the character.  Questions might deal with the historical character's beliefs or actions.  Questions are posed in a press conference type of format.

 

  Open Mind - After reading a short story, ask students to draw an outline of a head.  Inside the outline write and draw what a character in the story thinks, says, and feels in words and pictures.

 

  Puppet Shows - Ask students to construct simple stick puppets using "paper doll cut outs" or other materials.  Students perform puppet shows.

 

  Readers Theatre - Readers Theatre is a performance read aloud by students.  The script is written by the students with the help of their teacher.  Students create a dramatic performance by reading a story and extracting or creating dialogue between historical characters.

 

  Storyboard - Give each student a piece of blank, unlined paper.  Ask them to fold it once vertically and once horizontally through the center making four rectangles of equal size.  After reading the story, ask students to write one main idea from the story at the top of each rectangle and illustrate it with a picture or symbols.  Ask students to write or create a suitable quotation from the story at the bottom of every rectangle.

 

  Talking with Historical Characters - Identify a particular character from a story.  Ask students to react to the character's viewpoint(s) by constructing a letter, creating an interview situation, writing a poem, or using interactive journals.  Correspondences with the character should include reactions, responses, pointed questions and requests for more information.  Ask students to hypothetically respond to questions "through the eyes of the historical character".

 

  Visualization - After reading a story, ask students to draw a picture of images suggested.  For example, students may read a story of a child's experience crossing the Great Plains in a covered wagon and then draw a picture of one of the events described.

A teacher is: a guide, a modernizer, a model, a searcher, a counselor, a creator,

an authority, an inspirer of vision, a doer of routine, a breaker of camp,

a storyteller, an actor, a scene designer, a builder of community,

a learner, a facer of reality, an emancipator, an evaluator,

a conserver, a culminator, a person.

~"A Teacher is Many Things"

TEACHING WITH HISTORIC SITES

Historic sites provide visitors with a unique opportunity to "walk in the footsteps" of ordinary and extraordinary people of the past.  Museum exhibits of artifacts, displays, documents, and other primary sources help us understand how people lived; visiting an historic site also gives us a sense of time and place.  Visiting a Native American village site, a "station" along the Underground Railroad, a Civil War battlefield, or even famous Monticello can overwhelm the tangible and intangible senses of any visitor.  The topography of the land, the climate, structures, monuments, and markers are vivid reminders of what life was really like, what struggles were endured, and legacies left behind.

 

It is important to remember, however, that how historic sites are preserved and presented are often left up to the interpretation of local agencies or organizations.  According to James Loewen, "Events of national and international signifcance happened at local sites that are under local control.  The way that these sites tell their history and perhaps distort it affects how events and people are remembered far away.  Every historic site tells two different stories about two different eras in the past - the time it is about and time that put it up."

 

There are many things that can be done to turn any visit to a historic site into an enriching and enjoyable learning experience for young people.  Below are a few suggestions:

Before the Visit:

Connect the visit with classroom learning objectives and academic content standard(s).  Any field trip becomes more meaningful to students who come with background knowledge and enthusiasm to learn more about the site to be visited, the events that occurred, and the people who lived there.

  Make the visit an interdisciplinary experience by connecting it with literature, creative writing, science, art, music, technology, and architecture.

  Contact the historic site ahead of time for directions, hours of operation, food and restroom facilities, special needs, parking availability, cost of admission, tours, etc.

  If taking a large group, contact the education department of the site to notify them of your visit and if possible, arrange for a private tour.  Divide the class into smaller groups and ask parents or other adults to accompany each group as a chaperone.  Acquaint each adult with the learning objectives, the facility, the trip agenda, and their role.

  Identify specific exhibits or points of interest during the site visit.

  Talk with young people, ahead of time, about the historic site they will be visiting: what they will see, why it is significant, and what to expect.

  If taking Prepare young people with strategies for examining artifacts, analyzing primary source documents, and interpreting visuals.  Acquaint them with a sense of time and place.  Remind them of rules, expectations, and "museum etiquette".

 

 

During the Visit:

  As appropriate, explore the historic site using a variety of senses and learning modalities: seeing, hearing, smelling, and touching.

  Make connections with background knowledge.

  Ask pointed questions about the significance and authenticity of the historic site.  James Loewen, in his book, Lies Across American:  What Our Historic Sites Get Wrong advises visitors to historic sites to ask the following questions:

  When did this location become a historic site?  when was the marker or monument put up?  Our house "interpreted"?  How did that time differ from ours?  From the time of the event or person commemorated?

  Who  sponsored it?  Representing which participant group's point of view?  What was their position in the social structure when the event occurred?  When the site went "up"?

  What were the sponsors' motives?  What were their ideological needs and social purposes?  What were their values?

  Who is the intended audience for the site?  What values were they trying to leave for us, today?  What does the site ask us to go and do or thing about?

  Did the sponsors have government support?  At what level?  Who was ruling the government at that time?  What ideological arguments were used to get the government to acquiesce?

  Who is left out?  What points of view go largely unheard?  How would the story differ if a different group told it?  Another political party?  Race?  Sex?  Class?  Religious group?

  Are there problematic (insulting or degrading) words or symbols that would not be used today, or by other groups?

  How is the site used today?  Do traditional rituals continue to connect today's public to it?  Or is it ignored?  Why?

Is the presentation accurate?  What actually happened?  What historical sources tell of the event, people, or period commemorated at the site?

How does the site fit in with others that treat the same era?  Or subject?  What other people lived and events happened then but are not commemorated?  Why?

 

 

After the Visit:

  Reflect upon the experience as an opportunity to reinforce and continue learning.  Encourage young people to make a journal entry, write a story, dialogue, create a piece of artwork, or make a presentation about the historic significance of the site.

  Encourage further study by accessing web sites, primary sources, literature, and artwork connected to the historic site and the people who lived there.

  Provide young people with service learning opportunities to volunteer at the historic site as a tour guide, participate in a restoration project, record local histories, or inform others of the site as a local resource.

  Ask to be put on a mailing list of the site visited to be informed of future events and special exhibits.

  Write letters to the staff members of the historic site, thanking them for their hospitality and contribution to student learning.

AN INVESTMENT IN KNOWLEDGE PAYS THE BEST INTEREST.

~Benjamin Franklin

INTEGRATING GEOGRAPHY

I must study politics and war that my [children] may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy.

My [children] ought to study mathematics and philosophy, geography, natural history,

naval architecture, navigation, commerce, and agriculture, in order to give their children

a right to study painting, music, architecture, statuary, tapestry, and porcelain.

-John Adams

May 12, 1780

 

 

Goals 2000

Goals 2000 of the Educate America Act of 1994 identified geography as "challenging subject matter" essential to preparing all students "for responsible citizenship, further learning, and productive employment in our Nation's modern economy."  Life in the 21st century presents many new physical challenges not found on the planet Earth even a hundred years ago.  Our world is more crowded, the physical environment is more threatened, natural resources more depleted, the global economy more competitive, and world events more interconnected.  Understanding and addressing these challenges requires an understanding of geography.

 

National Geography Standards

Geography for Life: National Geography Standards were prepared by the Geography Education Standards Project, a collaborative venture of the American Geographical Society, the Association of American Geographers, the National Council for Geographic Education, and the National Geographic Society.

 

The 1994 National Geography Standards describes geography as

...the science of space and place on the Earth's surface.  Its subject matter is the physical and human phenomena that make up the world's environments and places.  Geography asks us to look at the world as a whole, to understand the connections between places, to recognize that the local affects the global and vice versa.  The power and beauty of geography lie in seeing, understanding, and appreciating the web of relationships among people, places, and environments.

 

Developed for grades K-4, 5-8, and 9-12, the Geography Standards identify essential benchmarks for subject matter, skills, and perspectives that all students should have in order to attain high levels of geographic competence.  These are eighteen National Geography Standards grouped into six essential elements:

  The World in Spatial Terms: Geography studies the relationships between people, places, and environments by mapping information about them into a spatial context.

  Places and Regions: The identities and lives of individuals and peoples are rooted in particular places and in those human constructs called regions.

  Physical Systems: Phyiscal processes shape Earth's surface and interact with plant and animal life to create, sustain, and modify ecosystems.

  Human Systems: People are central to geography in that human activities help shape Earth's surface, human settlements and structures are part of Earth's surface, and humans compete for control of Earth's surface.

  Environment and Society: The physical environment is modified by human activities largely as a consequence of the ways in which human societies value and use Earth's natural resources, and human activities are also influenced by Earth's physical features and processes.

  The Uses of Geography: Knowledge of geography enables people to develop an understanding of the relationships between people, places, and environments over time-that is, of Earth as it was, is, and might be.

 

 

The Five Themes of Geography

The six essential elements identified in the National Geography Standards reflect the five fundamental geography themes defined in 1984 by the Joint Committee on Geographic Education of the National Council for Geographic Education and the Association of American Geographers.  Each of the five themes encompasses several geographic concepts and ideas and suggests a set of specific questions to be asked and skills to be applied.  The use of these themes in questioning techniques and critical thinking strategies enable teachers to integrate geography into virtually any course of study.  A description of each of the Five Themes of Geography is listed below along with questioning strategies that can be adapted to the many stories incorporated.

 

I.  Locations:  Position on the Earth's Surface

  Absolute location describes the position of people and places on the earth's surface using the grid system of latitude and longitude.  The coordinates of latitude and longitude identify exact or absolute locations are used to measure distances, locate places, and final directions.

Relative location refers to the position of a point or place in relation to other places.  Relative location enhances understanding of what and why cities, people, and institutions reside where they do.

Questioning Strategies: When interpreting a map or visual of a geographic location, the following questions may be utilized to teach the key ideas associated with the theme of location:

What is the latitude and longitude of this location?

What landmarks are nearby?

What would it be like to live at this location?

Is it a desirable place to live or work relative to location?  Why or why not?

In reference to absolute and relative location,  why is this (city, town, building) situated in this specific area?

 

II.  Place: Physical and Human Characteristics

Places refer to the physical and human characteristics used to describe a specific location.

Physical characteristics are generally related to the geological, biological, and atmospheric processes that produce land, water, climate, soils, and life forms on earth.

Human characteristics are related to the ideas, decisions, and actions that shape the character of a place.

Questioning Strategies: The following questions may help students understand how physical and human characteristics influence the demographics, settlement patterns, buildings, recreational activities, economics, transportation and communication networks:

  How do physical features (rivers, mountains, weather patterns, etc.) change the character of a location?

  How do human features (park, school, businesses, etc.) change the character of a location?

  What physical and human characteristics contribute to the viability of living and/or working at this location?

  How does the interaction between physical and human characteristics influence people's lives?

 

III.  Interaction: Humans and the Environment

The theme of human/environment interaction addresses the ways people respond to and modify the natural environment.  Responsible environmental attitudes and behavior evolve from an understanding of the consequences, positive and negative, of human interaction with the environment.

 

Questioning Strategies: Important questions can be asked to raise the level of awareness of the relationship between people and the environment:

  How is this land used by people?

  What natural resources are used by people to meet their needs (living, farming, industry, etc.) in this location?

  What are the positive and negative effects of building dams, factories, cities, schools, and shopping malls?

  What changes, if any, are needed to enable people to continue to meet their needs at this location?

  What are the possible consequences to these changes, if any, to the environment?

  Identify specific environmental systems that have been threatened due to human interaction?

  What can be done to restore these areas?

  What can people do in the future to prevent the destruction of environments?

 

IV.   Movement: Human Interacting on the Earth

Movement examines the use of transportation and communication systems that link people in one location with those in another location.  Geography helps students understand the patterns of movements of products, resources, and information across the earth.  An understanding of these movements raises an appreciation of the world's ethnic diversity and our reliance on international trade.

 

Questioning Strategies: Critical questions support key ideas of interdependence, links between places, and patterns of movement involving people, ideas, and products:

  How do transportation systems (railroads, airplanes, trucks, etc.) affect the movement of people, ideas, and goods into and out of a specific region?

  How does technology contribute to the transportation of people, ideas, and products?

  How does trade affect the physical and human characteristics of a place?

  How does movement of people and ideas affect the physical and human characteristics of a place?

 

V.     Regions: How They Form and Change

Regions are defined as an area of the earth that has one or more common factors found throughout.  These factors may include:

Human factors such as language and government.

Physical features such as mountains and climate.

Vegetation such as swamp or redwood forest.

Anaylzing the human and physical environment of a region helps students understand current events and human activitiy.

 

Questioning Strategies: Effective questioning techniques help students analyze the human and physical dynamics of regions of varying sizes and encourages them to think globally.

  Identify the different regions in your classroom (centers for reading, art, science, etc.)  Where does one region begin and another end?  How do they overlap?

  Identify a specific region on a map?  How would you define its borders?

  Identify the various interactions (residential, industrial, and commercial) that are taking place within a specific region?

  Provide students with examples of regions and ask them to identify the characteristics that define these areas as regions:

  Time zones

  United States Regions: The Northeast, Southeast, Northwest, Southwest

  Death Valley, Everglades, Great Plains

  Silicone Valley, Research Triangle

EDUCATION DOES NOT MEAN TEACHING PEOPLE TO KNOW WHAT THEY DO NOT KNOW;

IT MEANS TEACHING THEM TO BEHAVE AS THEY DO NOT BEHAVE.

~John Ruskin

CONNECTING WITH YOUR LOCAL COMMUNITY THROUGH SERVICE LEARNING

In a democratic society we must live cooperatively, and serve the community in which we live, to the best of our ability.

For our own success to be real, it must contribute to the success of others.

-Eleanor Roosevelt

 

 

 

In order for democratic societies to prosper, its citizens need to be educated and committed toward working for the common good.  A responsible citizenry is created by the deliberate efforts of individuals to infuse the ideals of cooperation, compassion, and respect among all members of a society.  A commitment to service is not necessarily an inherent disposition.  It is usually a quality that is modeled and nurtured over long periods of time.

 

Service-learning provides the mechanism for young people to see the value of service to their community while developing tangible connections to classroom learning.  Unlike community service, which is often unrelated to academic content, service-learning is seen as an instructional strategy that inspires young people to learn about and serve their communities through experiences directly tied to their school cirriculum.

 

Service-learning was clearly defined in the National and Community Service Act of 1990, signed into law by President George Bush.  The act, reauthroized in 1993 as the National and Community Service Trust Act, was signed by President Bill Clinton.

 

Analyzing Documents

The Chicago Neighborhood History Project sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities has identified the following strategies for analyzing documents:

 

A.  Identifying the Document

1.  Author or source

2.  Title

3.  Date

4.  Type of document

5.  Proper bibliographic enttry for the document

 

 

The term service-learning is defined as a method-

A.  Under which students or participants learn and develop through active participation in throughfully organized service that-

1.  is conducted in and meets the needs of a community.

2. is coordinated with an elementry school, secondary school, institution of higher education, or community service program, and   with the community; and

3.  helps foster civic responsbility; and

B.  that-

1.  is integrated into and enhances the [core] academic cirriculum of the students, or the educational components of the community  service program in which the participants are enrolled; and

2.  provides structured time for the students or participants to reflect on the service experience.

 

Schools across America have adopted service-learning as a proven mechanism for increasing academic achievement, meeting academic content standards, and increasing a sense of civic responsibility among young people.  Most agree that in order for this goal to be achieved, multiple service-learning experiences must occur at each grade span and each grade level.

 

The California Superintendent's Service-Learning Task Force has identified the following recommendations toward achieving the goals of high quality service learning:

Develop policies and plans to ensure that all students have academically meaningful, sequential, and sustained service-learning experiences throughout their schooling.

  Link service-learning to state and local standards, assessments, and accountability tools.

  Work collaboratively with community partners and national service providers, such as AmeriCorps and VISTA, to ensure that roles and responsibilities are clear, service is meaningful, and all partners are committed to success.

  Give youth a voice in their education by involving them fully in planning, implementing, and evaluating service-learning activities.

   Establish a local service-learning advisory committee or include service-learning respresentatives on existing school and district advisory committees.

  Provide ongoing training and professional development for teachers, administrators, community partners, students, and family members so that everyone understands service-learning.

  Provide adequate funding, resources, and time to infuse service-learning fully in schools and communities.

  Included service-learning as a vital instructional strategy in teacher education programs.

 

 

Deeply imbedded within the History/Social Science discipline are the ideals of citizenship, democracy, and civic value.  Service-learning clearly speaks to these ideals through hands-on experiences that provide students the opportunity to reflect upon their contributions as responsible citizens in a democratic society.  In addition, there are many specific themes and learning objectives, identified in the History/Social Science Academic Content Standards that can also be achieved through service-learning experiences.  Below are a few examples:

 

Community Themes

Students learn about the needs of various groups in their community, volunteer at local facilities and/or collect items needed by facility to serve the needs of individuals.

 

Community groups in need of services may include:

homelss

senior citizen

abused children and adults

disabled

under-achieving students

second language learners

animals (pet adoptions)

 

 

  Local History Themes

Many local communities lack the resources to accurately collect, record, and document the local history of their area.  Students can assist in this process by:

interviewing senior citizens and local historians

volunterring at local museums and historical societies to update and maintain local histories

developing and publishing local history writings

 

 

•  Civic Education and Civic Responsibility

The study of civics and government are critically important to the development of an informed, responsible citizenry and the future of democratic socieities.  Engaging students in service-learning opportunities that utilize and support these learnings increase civic understanding and a commitment among young people to support and improve the political process in the years to come.  Service-learning activities linked to civic education may include:

  Volunteering in a political campaign

  Staging a public forum that enables community members to hear opposing views and issues of political candidates and initatives

  Helping with voter registration

  Organizing a campaign to "get the vote out" particularly among young voters (18-25 year olds) who represent the age group with the lowest voter turnout

  Working in polling booths

  Developing public policies to address current problems or community needs (see below)

  Volunteer at political conventions or forums

  Teach younger students or peers about the political process

  Support or establish a student council as a school

  Represent youth on local governing boards (Board of Education, City Council, etc.)

 

 

•  Enacting Public Policy

Most social issues and problems that occur in modern society are generally not unique to the 20th and 21st century.  For example, acts of vandalism as willful acts of destruction have occurred repeatedly throughout history as evidenced by the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem, the destructive acts of the Vandals throughout Europe during the fall of the Roman Empire, and even the protests of American colonists during the "Boston Tea Party."

 

By making historical comparisons to recurring issues and themes in history, students can analyze the failures and successes of the past and use these learnings to address the many social problems of the present.  These insights enable students to develop, promote, or enact public policies based on the learnings of the past.  The process for developing public policies for the purpose of addressing needs in the local community may include:

Identifying a current public problem or issue of concern

Making historical connections to the past

Examining policies and plans from the past for the purpose of addressing the identified problem in the present

Identifying and examining alternative policies, programs, and plans which address the identified problem or need

Developing a feasible public policy that addresses the current problem or issue

Presenting the plan to the appropriate governing body for adoption

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