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Lesson Plans (32) A detailed description of the instruction for teaching one or more concepts or skills. Unit Plans (3)  Multimedia (1) A program (audio or video) made available in digital format for playback or download over the Internet.
Learning Activities (2)


ALEX Lesson Plans


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Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: Slavery: The Act of Buying, Selling, and Gifting Humans
Description: Through this lesson, students will explore primary sources related to the buying and selling of human beings for the purpose of slavery. Students will analyze receipts from stores and discuss what they demonstrate about modern society.  Students will then analyze the language and iconography used in bills of sale pertaining to the buying and selling of slaves in the 19th century. The students will write a paragraph to compare and contrast the items from both eras. This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History.


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Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: We, the People...
Description: In 1819 the Constitutional Convention met in Huntsville, Alabama in order to write our state's constitution. In this lesson, students will learn what a preamble is, as well as, read both the United States' Preamble to the Constitution and the preamble to Alabama's Constitution. Students will examine similarities between both preambles and discuss possible reasons for such similarities. Fifth-grade teachers could also utilize this lesson to examine and compare both preambles and their purposes.  This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History.


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Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: A Natural Attraction: The Natural Resources of Alabama During the Early Nineteenth Century
Description: This lesson looks at the natural resources that drew settlers to Alabama.  Students will explore the 1818 letter from Joseph Noble to his friend, Samuel B. Bidgood, describing the town at Tuscaloosa Falls.  Students will explain ideas within this historical text based on specific information presented in this primary source. Follow up lesson - Alabama: A Boundless Field of Speculation This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History.


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Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: Alabama: A Boundless Field of Speculation
Description: This lesson looks at the natural resources that drew businesses to Alabama. Students will explore the adapted 1820 letter from Mason and Dexter in Cahaba, Alabama to Richards and Simmons in Cumberland, Rhode Island.  Students will explain ideas within this historical text based on specific information presented in this primary source. This lesson can be used as a stand alone or can follow A Natural Attraction: The Natural Resources of Alabama During the Early Nineteenth Century.  This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History.


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Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: Alabama's Early Governors
Description: In this lesson, students will learn about the executive branch of government at the state level, especially related to the first governors of the state of Alabama. Their impact on the development of Alabama and Alabama's role in the United States will be discussed. Students will use research and note taking skills to gather information on an early governor. Then students will participate in jigsaw groups to share their information, discuss the importance of each governor, similarities, and impact. Finally, students will discuss the role of governor and how governors have an impact on the state and the impact these men had in Alabama and in other states.  This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History. 


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Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: School is in Session!
Description: In this lesson, students will be able to describe cultural aspects of early nineteenth century townspeople by reading a newspaper article describing the opening of a new school. Students will also be able to discuss, infer, and write from a variety of perspectives when explaining the roles of various people mentioned in the article. This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History.


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Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: You Don't Have Mail!
Description: This lesson will provide students with two primary documents, a drawing of a postal stagecoach and a newspaper article outlining the difficulties of mail delivery. Students will complete a graphic organizer to provide evidence that details a specific perspective described in the documents. Students will examine the cultural and economic aspects of the early nineteenth century and will refer to details and examples in a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences. Students will be able to explain how an author uses reasons and evidence to support particular points of view. This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History.


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Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: Look Who's Coming to Dinner!
Description: Students will read from an Alabama newspaper about President James Monroe's surprise visit to Huntsville. The article discusses the purposes of the visit, the locals who welcomed and entertained the President, and his discussion of current (1819) events. This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History.


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Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: Lafayette's Grand Tour
Description: Students will analyze a primary document and read a secondary source about the Marquis de Lafayette's Grand Tour of the United States in 1825. The Marquis and his entourage toured lower Alabama for a few days in April. Students will create an annotated timeline detailing his days and the events that occurred in Alabama as the country prepared to celebrate America's 50th birthday. The timeline will include dates and descriptions of the people, places, and events in informative summaries as well as appropriate illustrations. This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History.


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Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: You are Invited!
Description: Students will analyze a primary document that details items purchased to celebrate the Marquis de Lafayette's tour of Alabama in April 1825. Students will create an invitation to the celebration, including the What, Where, When, Why, What to Bring, and R.S.V.P. Students will include details from the secondary source, as well as the primary document, to include on the invitation. The event will be explained utilizing the format of the invitation. This lesson is part of the SSC3 A+ College Ready training. This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History.


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Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: Hernando de Soto in Alabama
Description: Students will use primary sources to gain information about Hernando de Soto, his route, and his interactions with Native Americans in Alabama. Students will read two articles in order to identify information about Hernando de Soto and his journey through Alabama. Students will also learn about the impact of European Exploration on the Native Americans who were in Alabama in the 1500s.  This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History.


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Subject: Arts Education (4), or English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4)
Title: Alabama Fever!
Description: In this lesson, students will work in small groups to examine a letter describing the environment of Alabama and identify reasons which might have encouraged settlers to move to Alabama in the early nineteenth century.   Students will choose an interesting attraction of Alabama mentioned in the letter and design a postage stamp around that attraction.  This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History.


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Subject: English Language Arts (4)
Title: Save the Elephants
Description: The students will evaluate the threat to elephants due to the illegal ivory trade. They will read an article, watch a video, and create a public service announcement to help end the threat to elephants. This is a College- and Career-Ready Standards showcase lesson plan.


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Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Technology Education (3 - 5)
Title: Aunt Chip and the Triple Creek Dam Affair by Patricia Pollaco
Description: In this lesson, students will read and summarize the book by pages. After publishing, students will use their slides as sequencing exercises. This lesson plan can be adapted for any grade level or book.


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Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Mathematics (3)
Title: Teaching Measurement through Literature and Manipulatives
Description: The tradebook, Who Sank the Boat? by Pamela Allen, is an excellent tool in teaching measurement. Students will engage in activities involving different types of measurement. In the story, five animal friends decide to take a boat ride. As each animal climbs into the boat it sinks lower and lower in the water. The phrase, "Do you know who sank the boat?" encourages children to make predictions.


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Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Information Literacy (K - 12), or Technology Education (3 - 5)
Title: You, Too, Can Be an Inventor!
Description: How have inventions changed the world? This unit focuses on the importance, the process and the creativity involved in inventing. Through the study of inventions and inventors, students learn how inventions are created and the characteristics that inventors share. They will create a slideshow presentation on an invention/inventor of their choice. Students will work through steps to come up with their own unique inventions. Finally, they will develop brochures to promote their inventions.


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Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Technology Education (3 - 5)
Title: Name Etymology
Description: During this lesson, students will have the opportunity to research the etymology and history of their names. Students will begin to understand ways to make history, linguistic history, and cultural history a lot of fun.


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Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (3 - 5), or Technology Education (3 - 5)
Title: The Native Americans and Their Environment
Description: The students will research Native American groups and relate how the environment affected their lifestyles and cultures. The students will create a slideshow presentation depicting this relationship. The students will compare Native American groups in order to observe the differences in their lifestyles and cultures.


Thinkfinity Lesson Plans


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Subject: Arts,Language Arts,Social Studies
Title: Oh Say Can You See What the Star Spangled Banner Means?     
Description: This unit of eight lessons, from EDSITEment, is designed to explore the symbolic, historical, and literary background of the American flag, beginning with Francis Scott Key's poetic account of the bombardment of Fort McHenry. Using archival documents and images, students associate Key's words with historic events and recognize the sentiment those words inspired. In the second part of the unit, students review the symbols within the flag and look at some historic images of the flag that have become part of American national consciousness.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 3,4,5



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Subject: Language Arts,Social Studies
Title: On This Day with Lewis and Clark     
Description: This five-lesson unit, from EDSITEment, is designed to help students appreciate the immensity and mystery of the mission Lewis and Clark accepted. As experts investigating specific subjects assigned to Lewis by President Jefferson, students conduct careful research. Reading brief diary entries of the men of the Corps sparks the interest of students as they relive the discoveries of the original participants.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 3,4,5



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Cyberspace Explorer: Getting to Know Christopher Columbus     
Description: Students explore multiple online sources to gather information about the life of Christopher Columbus, complete a cyber scavenger hunt, and use their notes to prepare a timeline and summary report.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 3,4,5



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Guided Comprehension: Making Connections Using a Double-Entry Journal     
Description: Based on the Guided Comprehension Model by Maureen McLaughlin and Mary Beth Allen, this lesson helps students learn three types of connections (text-to-text, text-to-self, and text-to-world) using a double-entry journal.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 4,5,6



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Q is for Duck: Using Alphabet Books With Struggling Writers     
Description: A is for zoo? Q is for duck? The alphabet as students know it is transformed when students create a class book that contains clever associations for each letter of the alphabet.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 3,4,5



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Research Building Blocks: Notes, Quotes, and Fact Fragments     
Description: Students are guided through the process of taking notes while reading factual information, then turning those notes into new sentences and paragraphs written in their own words.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 3,4,5



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Teaching Science Through Picture Books: A Rainforest Lesson     
Description: Students read Welcome to the Green House, use note-taking strategies, find patterns in text structure, learn vocabulary in context, and write efferent and affective responses to the text.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 3,4,5



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Using Science Texts to Teach the Organizational Features of Nonfiction     
Description: Students explore organizational features of nonfiction science. Students then work together to create a two-page spread using those features to present information about their local environment.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 3,4,5



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Vote for Me! Developing, Writing, and Evaluating Persuasive Speeches     
Description: This lesson encourages students in grades 4 and 5 to think critically and write persuasively by focusing on preparing, presenting, and evaluating mock campaign speeches.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 4,5



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Using Historical Fiction to Learn About the Civil War     
Description: Students in grades 4 and 5 discuss inferential comprehension and visualization as they use a think-aloud questioning strategy to develop a deeper understanding of a historical novel.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 3,4,5



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Writing and Assessing an Autobiographical Incident     
Description: Students build upon their knowledge of biographies to write their own autobiographical incident. After going through a process of revision, they use a rubric to assess their work.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 3,4,5



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Wartime Poetry: Working With Similes     
Description: Students analyze a photograph, brainstorm words to describe the characters' senses and feelings, work in pairs to describe a character's experience, and create a poem using their ideas and similes.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 3,4,5



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Creating a Classroom Newspaper     
Description: Students write authentic newspaper stories, including learning about various aspects of newspapers, such as writing an article, online articles, newspaper reading habits, and layout and design techniques.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 3,4,5



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Subject: Arts,Language Arts,Science
Title: 'Leap, plashless'': Emily Dickinson and Poetic Imagination     
Description: In this lesson, from EDSITEment, students read and explore one of Emily Dickinson's nature poems, A Bird came down the Walk--through interaction with other art forms. First, they listen to clips of a hymn to help them hear Dickinson's meter. Then, they view 19th-century bird images and describe what they see, just as a poet would. They observe how a poet plays with language and imagery to create a scene by acting out verse lines. Finally, they write a brief poem of their own, using what they have learned and their own observations.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 3,4,5



ALEX Learning Activities


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Title: This Day in History
Digital Tool: World Book This Day in History iPad app
Digital Tool Description: This app, created by World Book, is an interactive multimedia calendar that displays historical events for the current day or any selected day, along with related media such as photos, illustrations, music, and speeches.


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Title: Who's Who in Alabama?
Digital Tool: ReadWriteThink Bio Cube Creator
Digital Tool Description: This option allows students to develop an outline of a person whose biography or autobiography they have just read. Student may print the final product which can be cut and pasted into an actual cube. Planning sheets are provided.


ALEX Multimedia


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4 Levels of Questions for Analyzing Text
Overview:
The podcast identifies 4 levels of questions to ask when reading text. There are example questions for each level of question.  The questions help readers break down different elements of text and structure questions for teachers to support readers.  The questions also are applicable as students read complex text. 


Thinkfinity Learning Activities


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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Find favorite book picks in the Children's Choices.     
Description: Students create lists of their favorite books and then the class creates a '' Top Picks'' class booklist. Students can use the Book Cover Creator to create a book jacket for their favorite book.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: On this day in 1907, Rachel Carson was born.     
Description: Students learn about Rachel Carson, explore different environmental websites, and write a Diamante Poem about a particular habitat.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: November is National American Indian Heritage Month.     
Description: Students explore Native American heritage through the study of pourquoi tales, write their own original pourquoi tales, and use the ReadWriteThink Printing Press to publish them.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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