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Lesson Plans (17) A detailed description of the instruction for teaching one or more concepts or skills. Podcasts (13) A program (audio or video) made available in digital format for playback or download over the Internet. Learning Activities (6) Any activity that would enhance a lesson or unit in order to help the learner master an objective 
and/or acquire a skill.  Examples include, but are not limited to, online tutorials, experiments, 
demonstrations, and hands-on activities.


ALEX Lesson Plans


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Subject: English Language Arts (6 - 7)
Title: What Next? There’s a Hoarder Living Next Door!
Description: This interactive lesson provides students with an opportunity to evaluate how the use of language and wordplay emphasize the theme presented in Shel Silverstein’s humorous poem, "Sarah Cynthia Silvia Stout, Wouldn’t Take the Garbage Out." Students will close read the poem and explain how the use of alliteration, hyperbole, and strong imagery assist in revealing the tone, characters, and theme. By the end of the lesson, students will have a conceptual knowledge of the distinction between alliteration and hyperbole and be able to identify explicit examples from the text.  This is a College- and Career-Ready Standards showcase lesson plan.


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Subject: English Language Arts (6), or Science (6)
Title: Let’s Get Physical! (or Chemical Weathering)
Description: This lesson helps students learn the differences between physical and chemical weathering. Students will complete various activities in which they identify and describe the type of weathering that is taking place.This lesson plan was created as a result of the Girls Engaged in Math and Science, GEMS Project funded by the Malone Family Foundation.


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Subject: English Language Arts (6), or Science (6), or Technology Education (6 - 8)
Title: Washed Away
Description: In this lesson, students will learn about water erosion. They will view pictures and videos, complete drawings, and work in collaborative groups as they research types of water erosion (rill, gully, sheet, and channel). Students will also connect water erosion to deposition.This lesson plan was created as a result of the Girls Engaged in Math and Science, GEMS Project funded by the Malone Family Foundation.


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Subject: English Language Arts (6), or Social Studies (6), or Technology Education (6 - 8)
Title: What Was So Depressing About the Great Depression?
Description: This lesson focuses on the effects of the Great Depression on American life in the period from 1929-1940. Students learn about changes in art, music and literature that symbolize life of the everyday man. Students also learn about the causes that lead to the Great Depression.


Thinkfinity Lesson Plans


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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Dynamic Duo Text Talks: Examining the Content of Internet Sites     
Description: An Observation and Inquiry Sheet guides students as they analyze and compare their reactions to the value, engagement, and credibility of three websites related to Anne Frank and the Holocaust.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 6,7,8



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: The Reading Performance: Understanding Fluency Through Oral Interpretation     
Description: Students discuss prosody, gain a new appreciation for literature intended for oral performance, and participate in activities that instill the value of technology in shaping their appreciation of literature.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 6,7,8



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Subject: Language Arts,Social Studies
Title: Metaphorical Gold: Mining the Gold Rush for Stories     
Description: In this EDSITEment lesson, students research the Gold Rush era to provide authentic background for their own fictional prose. By mining online databases for primary texts and period photographs, students can explore the Klondike Stampede and glean from their visit sufficient period details to help them create their own narratives based on the Gold Rush. While the emphasis of this lesson is on history and research rather than literature, selections from Jack London's The Call of the Wild are used to provide focus and structure for students research in online databases of primary sources, and to serve as models of vivid narrative prose for students own stories.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 6,7,8



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Weaving the Threads: Integrating Poetry Annotation and Web Technology     
Description: Students read a poem by a Native American, explore Native American culture and then create a Website that explains words and phrases from the poem.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 6,7,8



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Cosmic Oranges: Observation and Inquiry Through Descriptive Writing and Art     
Description: Students will eat up this lesson about oranges as they practice the skills that help them investigate and make detailed observations for descriptive purposes.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 6,7,8



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Subject: Language Arts,Social Studies
Title: Who Were the Foremothers of Women's Equality?      
Description: This lesson, from EDSITEment, introduces students to the achievements of Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony, the foremothers of women's equality. By studying a variety of primary historical materials, students also learn about some of the lesser-known activists who fought alongside Stanton and Anthony in the formative Women's Rights Movement.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 6,7,8



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Postmodern Picture Books in Middle School     
Description: Students analyze the structure of a postmodern picture book, Black and White, to uncover how authors create unexpected plots and connections and form relationships between words and illustrations.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 6,7,8



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: In the Poet's Shoes: Performing Poetry and Building Meaning     
Description: Students take poetic license when they interpret William Carlos William's poem '' The Red Wheelbarrow'' to help create a poem of their own.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 6,7,8



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Battling for Liberty: Tecumseh's and Patrick Henry's Language of Resistance     
Description: Students study Patrick Henry's '' Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death'' speech and the ways Native Americans also resisted oppression through rhetoric and action.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 6,7,8



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Critical Media Literacy: TV Programs     
Description: By critically analyzing popular television programs, students develop an awareness of the messages that are portrayed through the media.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 6,7,8



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Critical Media Literacy: Commercial Advertising     
Description: By looking at advertising and mass media critically, students begin to understand how the media oppresses certain groups, convinces people to purchase certain products, and influences culture.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 6,7,8



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Subject: Language Arts,Social Studies
Title: Listening to History     
Description: This unit of four lessons, from EDSITEment, is designed to help students tap the resource of family stories and local history by conducting oral history interviews with family members. Through a series of classroom activities, the lessons introduce students to the riches historians can discover in firsthand recollections, help them choose a topic and prepare for a productive family interview, provide tips for conducting and recording the interview, and offer suggestions for sharing their family stories in a historical narrative or report.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 6,7,8



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Investigating the Holocaust: A Collaborative Inquiry Project     
Description: Students explore a variety of resources as they learn about the Holocaust. Working collaboratively, they investigate the materials, prepare oral responses, and produce a topic-based newspaper to complete their research.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 6,7,8



ALEX Podcasts


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Closing the Generation Gap through Interview
Overview:
This podcast describes a collaborative project in which students determined, with several options available, to conduct research about the past by interviewing people who lived during the Great Depression. The students had read Fannie Flagg's Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe, which depicted hard financial times. They explored traditional research methods (books and Internet) but decided on Interview with elderly residents from a nearby nursing home to achieve the most "local" information possible.  


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Hydra
Overview:
The Hydra was a dangerous mythical beast with many heads.  This podcast tells the story of Hercules' challenge to kill the Hydra as one of his twelve tasks.


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Greek & Roman Architecture
Overview:
This podcast of Greek and Roman architecture focuses on the key components of a home.  The student acquaints the viewer with specific vocabulary related to this time period. The description of the home gives a view into the lifestyle of these people and it also hints to the hierarchy of society.  In the final portion a contrast between homes of the wealthy and poor are made.


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Minor gods and goddesses
Overview:
This is one podcast of a series.  The purpose of this podcast was to inform students about minor gods and goddesses.  Iris is a messenger for Hera.  She is often depicted as having a staff and winged shoes. Eris is given credit for starting the Trojan War with major goddesses taking sides against each other.  The stories of Persephone, Circe, and The Fates are also mentioned.  Persephone's struggle to return to her mother Demeter explains the changing of the seasons.


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Roman Roads
Overview:
This podcast is a description of Roman roads.  The famous quotation, "All roads lead to Rome," was true in ancient times.  The Romans built their roads straight in order to see long distances.  The roads were well traveled and are still visible today.  Comparisons of mile markers and road signs to today's highways are made in this podcast.


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Artemis
Overview:
Artemis and her twin brother, Apollo, are the children of Leto and Zeus.  She is goddess of the hunt.  She is the patron goddess of young girls up until they are to be married.  She has sworn never to marry, thus her break with young ladies at this time. Artemis is able to take on many different appearances, but the most common is that of a teenage girl leading her band of warriors who are eternally youthful. 


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Theseus and the Minotaur
Overview:
Theseus is an ancient Greek hero.  He is pitted against the Minotaur by King Minos.  The daughter of the king aids Theseus in maneuvering his way through the Labyrinth.  Theseus survives the Labyrinth and wins the heart of the princess.  The Athenians were now saved from future sacrifices to the Minotaur. 


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Greek & Roman Government
Overview:
Many of our words in government as well as the style stem from ancient Greece & Rome.  Roman government modeled its style after the Greek democracy.  This podcast is an overview of Greek, Roman, and United State government.  Similarities are drawn between the progress made in ancient governments (who can vote) as well as that of the United States. History repeats itself with only wealthy males ruling in government in ancient times as well as beginning government in our own country.


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Artemis & Apollo
Overview:
This podcast outlines the origin of Artemis and Apollo.  Artemis is seen as a goddess of the hunt.  She is very bright and clever in her dealings with giants that attempt to overthrow those in Mount Olympus.  Apollo has other gifts.  He is given the task of making the sun rise each morning by riding his chariot through the sky.  Information about Hera, Zeus, and Leto is also included.


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Greek & Roman Toys & Games
Overview:
Greek & Roman toys for children are compared.  What is the purpose of the toys?  How do these toys compare with simple games that we play today?  Knucklebones seems to be the precursor to our current game of "Jacks".   Some of the games are for role playing to prepare them for the future position in society.


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Zeus, Poseidon, and Hades
Overview:
Kronos, Lord of the Titans, does not want to lose his power.  His plan to swallow his children whole is thwarted by Zeus.  The three super powers:  Zeus, Poseidon, and Hades, divide up the earth into areas to rule.  Each of the "Big 3" has a famous story to tell:  Zeus/Io, Poseidon and the Athenians, and Hades/Persephone/Demeter. Many of the stories are used to explain occurrences of the day. 


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Roman Gladiators
Overview:
There are many types of gladiators and methods of fighting.  In this podcast there are three main types that are mentioned.  Gladiators begin as slaves or low class citizens, but have the opportunity to rise in society by being successful.  The most famous gladiator is Spartacus.  Various implements of gladiators are described.  The gladiator fights were never meant to be a fair match, but a sporting event for the citizens with the favored and most famous using the best gear for battle.


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Greek Constellations
Overview:
The origins of constellations are named after mythological characters.  This podcast explains the origins of Pegasus and Cassiopeia.


Thinkfinity Learning Activities


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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Ezra Jack Keats was born on this day in 1916.     
Description: In celebration of Keats' birthday, students write stories that include some characters from Keats' books and practice using collage techniques with the Collage Machine.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Celebrate blues legend Robert Johnson's birthday.     
Description: Students learn about blues music and brainstorm subjects that might give them '' the blues.'' Finally, they write their own blues lyrics and have the option to perform.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Edward Stratemeyer, creator of book series such as Nancy Drew, was born on this day in 1862.     
Description: Students select several books from one of Stratemeyer's series to read, discuss shared elements in the books, and use the 3-Circle Venn Diagram to compare story elements.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 3,4,5,6,7,8



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: J.K. Rowling and her Harry Potter celebrate birthdays today.     
Description: Students are encouraged to think about why people challenge Harry Potter books, do a Web Quest that allows them to research the issue, and decide whether the books should be banned from the public library.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 7,8,9,10,11,12



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Library Card Sign-up Month begins today.     
Description: A school or public library librarian is invited to visit the classroom to talk to the students about the advantages of having a library card. Students then take a library tour to acquaint them with the general features and resources available.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6



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Subject: Language Arts
Title: Mickey Mouse appeared in his first animated feature.     
Description: Students create a short, humorous story with at least one action character, and then use the Comic Creator to make a flipbook.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 3,4,5,6,7,8



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