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Lesson 9 Discussion

Please tell us about ONE lesson plan or activity you discovered in the materials for this lesson and why you chose it.   I can see some that I THINK you will be excited about. 

Remember, with the National Archives facility materials ONLY, to copy the ones you like to your own computer.  They are going to be moved within the next couple of months. 

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  • I looked around on the National Archives site since those LPs are leaving the web.  I found quite a few that looked really worthwhile for various eras.  The one I decided to use is Images of the American Revolution.  It is a collection of eight documents or images depicting key events throughout the war for American Independence.  I liked that there was a brief synopsis of the war at the beginning of the lesson.  I'm envisioning that being used as an intro to the unit, and as a means of having students read non-fiction for main ideas (I try to incorporate as much SBA practice reading into my social studies classes as I can).  There were quite a few good activities to do with the images on the second page of the lesson.  Two stuck out as being quite useful. The first was to have students study the documents using the document/photo analysis tool, and then create a monologue to deliver to the class using information gained from the documents, and the discussion of those documents.  The second one I liked was having students study two engravings of Washington and Valley Forge.  They would then describe what they see, and attempt to compare the Patriots' situation with that of the British.  I think they could also be asked to write a descriptive personal essay in the form of a letter from the POV of a soldier quartered in Valley Forge.  I'm sure there are many great activities that could be derived from these collections.  I do love that they make using the Archives and this wealth of information just a little bit easier for us to access.

  • I spent a good deal of time looking at DocTeach Activities and really appreciate the way activities can be searched either by Historical Era, Historical Thinking Skill practices, or Activity Creation Tool used in its' design...  My only wish for improvement would be that there was a way to view search results as straight text strings, rather than with those clunky thumbnail graphics.  The graphic often contains no useful information and usually causes more relevant information to be unavailable without clicking on the "view detail" button.  Not complaining, mind you, just pointing out a time saving improvement for searching...

    I started by using the Search box for any activity created about Alaska.  But using the terms: Alaska, ANCSA, ANILCA, pipeline, & Exxon all drew 0 hits, so I went to plan B.  This was the point where I logged in.  The search results were the same though so I examined all the activities created with the Mapping History tool, in order to see how that worked. (Many times more activities visible when logged in!)

    I next looked at all the activities which practiced  the "Historical Issue-Analysis and Decision-Making" skill in order to get a sense for what was available, eventually picking "The Annexation of Hawaii" activity for deeper exploration.  I picked this one because I am interested in this Historical Thinking Skill and there are some commonalities between Alaska and Hawaii that are intriguing.  I found the activity to be interesting and worthwhile and the follow-up questions to seal the deal as a good, thoughtful activity.

    I can see that there a great many thoughtful activities prepared for an American History class and will definitely be exploring further...

  • Carol if some the images from this lesson appear on my powerpoint it's by coincidence.  Just a warning.  :)  My pics were done prior to this.  :)

    My lesson would be on the Day of Infamy Speech.  I would do the lesson exactly as is except that the kids would have to use me as a secondary source because the lesson requires them to use a person that lived during the war on part 7.  Although some could do this, most would not be able to do so.

    But I was was really impressed with the breakdown of this lesson and the learning of new vocabulary and analyzing the document from a word standpoint.

    I am absolutely going to put a lesson together using this.  It's awesome.

  • Wow, I'm amazed at the number of lesson plan ideas that are out there. I just can't believe it! I settled on a lesson from DocsTeach, and I'm really glad I am now taking Carol's next class on DocsTeach as there seems to be a lot of information in there, and I would like to really learn what it is I am playing with!

    Once creating an account, I went into activities and chose contemporary issues. There were 4 pages of topics! I selected the Drug Use Now and Then topic as I believed it would be something relevant to what counselors would be teaching, or could co-teach with a social studies teacher in any history class or in a psychology class, etc.  There is a video of President George Bush speaking of the drug war and then an activity asking students to completed the following, which would certainly be a great way for a class to start a discussion regarding drugs, society today, etc:

    "In 1989, President Bush addressed that there was a serious drug problem plaguing the U.S. Do you feel our drug problem has gotten worse or better? Are there drugs that have become more popular now that weren’t popular in the 80’s? Is the use of crack/cocaine still high now? Research numbers of Americans who used illegal drugs back in 1989 and compare to now. Try to find the change in use among different drugs like PCP, marijuana, crack/cocaine, and heroin." 

    What I found to be especially helpful about DocsTeach was the cross referencing (if that is what it is called) of sources and their lessons.  So for instance, if the teacher wanted to continue the lesson in their class that I had done on the drug war, they could then use the same video clip and use the lessons on Presidential Speeches, or the lessons on Roles of the President, etc.  Wow, this really opens some doors!

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