Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Famous Americans: Studying Biographies and Learning about Contributions

Was anyone else in the snow day club today? It was glorious! We don't get many of these in NC  so it was nice to wake up to that call this morning!

We needed it after our hour and 10 minute hard lock down yesterday. Let me tell you, being huddled in the corner with 19 antsy second graders is not easy!  Not to mention it was hotter than blue blazes (as my aunt would say)!

Anyway- I wanted to stop by to share a freebie I just made for our Famous Americans project.  The next 3 weeks are going to be all about biographies, contributions, and researching one famous american we are interested in.  We started by introducing the project and this week students are spending some time exploring to find someone they would be interested in.  

Here is my mini outline for the unit.  Keep in mind that during the exploration process we have been/will be studying biographies, how they are organized, how to read them, etc.  Then when we are researching- my mini lesson will focus on determining what is important and what we need to know.

I've made a list of some websites that students can use for their research and some graphic organizers for them to record their information.  This first one is for the exploration part.  I didn't want them to get overwhelmed looking at a ton of different websites so I stuck with one to start.  After they narrow down to one, they'll get the larger list!  

and here are our graphic organizers!

My plan is for them to take all of this information and make a poster than they can present to the class.  We might decide to invite parents as well.  Last year we did a Living Museum which was a blast! This year, I'm also going to try to put together a Voice Thread that we can put up on our class blog.  Each student will have their own little "slide" where they will be able to tell why their American is important.  

Click on the picture below to snag this freebie!

This is one of my favorite units throughout the whole year! How do you make learning fun for your students?

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