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Lesson Plans (4) A detailed description of the instruction for teaching one or more concepts or skills. Multimedia (1) A program (audio or video) made available in digital format for playback or download over the Internet. Informational Materials (7) Textual information containing useful facts or information.


ALEX Lesson Plans


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Subject: Social Studies (4 - 6)
Title: The Effect of the Great Depression on Children
Description: After the students have studied the problems that Americans faced during the Great Depression, the teacher will lead the students in a discussion about how the Great Depression affected children. Students will view various letters from different people requesting aid from the state to help provide for their children. This lesson was created as a part of the Alabama History Education Initiative, funded by a generous grant from the Malone Family Foundation in 2009. Author Information: Kathy DeFoor (Cohort 2:  2010-2011) Eva School, Morgan County Schools Eva, Alabama  


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Subject: Social Studies (4 - 6)
Title: Alabama Farm Life in the Great Depression
Description: This lesson will include the use of a primary document and period photographs for a cross-curriculum lesson analyzing setting to identify some adverse effects of the Great Depression for farmers. The student will create a postcard which depicts an understanding of the impact of the Great Depression on farmers. This lesson was created as a part of the Alabama History Education Initiative, funded by a generous grant from the Malone Family Foundation in 2009. Author Information: April Mitchell (Cohort 2: 2010-2011); Greenwood Elementary; Bessemer City Schools; Bessemer, AL


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Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4), or Technology Education (3 - 5)
Title: Book Boxes: Analyzing Elements of a Story
Description: In this lesson, students will listen to a read aloud and view a model of the project expected related to the first read aloud.  Students will then complete a group project based on a story read as a class. (This can be done as a read aloud or in literature circle groups.)  The books used in this particular activity are Bud, Not Buddy and The Watsons go to Birmingham.


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Subject: English Language Arts (4), or Social Studies (4), or Technology Education (3 - 5)
Title: Memories of the Great Depression
Description: This hands-on lesson combines social studies, language arts, and technology. Fourth grade students begin by researching and collecting information from a variety of sources. Students develop an appreciation of the difficulties endured by many people during the era of the Great Depression.


ALEX Multimedia


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Built for the People: The Story of the TVA (Abbreviated)
Overview:
In a land ravaged by flood, the people of the Tennessee Valley found their salvation in water.  In the depths of the Depression, they built a foundation for prosperity.  In the shadow of the past, they ushered in the Atomic Age.  This is the story of the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), that has touched the lives of so many people- and generations to come. Told through the eyes and experience of the people themselves, Built for the People is the story of a grand vision for the Valley.  A vision made possible by a region of people who gave their souls to make that vision a reality. Today, the Valley as we know it- all its magnificence, all its vitality and all its prosperity- stands as a testament to what can be achieved when men and women dedicate their lives to change the course of history. This is part of the Currents of Change program.  For additional resources, search ALEX for "Currents of Change" or go to http://currentsofchange.net/.


Thinkfinity Informational Materials


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Subject: Arts,Social Studies
Title: Picturing Modern America     
Description: Site contains interactive exercises designed to: Deepen students' understanding of common topics in the study of modern America 1880-1920; Build students' skills in analyzing primary sources; Generate questions that students can pursue by searching in American Memory and other sources.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 5,6,7



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Subject: Arts,Language Arts,Religion,Science,Social Studies,Geography
Title: Encyclopedia of Alabama     
Description: A free, authoritative source information about the history, politics, geography, and culture of the state of Alabama; updated regularly to ensure that the content is accurate and accessible. The editors are continually adding new entries, photographs, and maps, so check back frequently to see what's new.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: C1,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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Subject: Social Studies
Title: Feedsack Dress     
Description: Farm families in the early twentieth century, used to "making do'' with what they had, turned feed sacks and flour bags into dresses, underwear, towels, curtains, quilts, and other household necessities. By the 1940s the bag manufacturers were turning out bags in bright colors and printed designs. It was felt that these designs and colors would boost sales, because the woman of the house would always select the brand with the most attractive fabric. During World War II, there was a shortage of cotton fabric for the civilian population, and the recycling of bags became a necessity, encouraged by the government. National Museum of American History
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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Subject: Social Studies
Title: Treasures of American History: National Challenges     
Description: The Smithsonian's National Museum of American History provides a broad and complex view of the American experience. The valuable pieces of history displayed in this section of the online exhibition entitled "Treasures of American History'' document some of the struggles, conflicts, and controversies that have shaped the nation. Students will learn that by understanding the challenges of the past, they can draw lessons and inspiration for confronting new challenges in the present and future. The topics discussed in this section are: the American Revolution; slavery; westward expansion; the Civil War, women's suffrage, the Great Depression and World War II, the Civil Rights movement and AIDS. A Spanish version of the exhibition is available on the exhibition's homepage.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: 5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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Subject: Social Studies
Title: Thompson Model 1928 Submachine Gun     
Description: During World War I, machine guns were heavy, crew-served weapons. Their operation required several soldiers. Even so-called light machine guns could not easily be handled by single soldiers. To meet the need for an individual rapid-fire weapon, several inventors devised submachine guns. Light enough for one-man use, the new weapons were nicknamed "trench brooms" because they swept the trenches clear of enemy troops. The Thompson submachine gun was the handwork of John Taliaferro Thompson (West Point Class of 1882). It saw only limited wartime use, but the "Tommy gun" in the hands of police and gangsters achieved notoriety as "the gun that made the twenties roar."
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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Subject: Social Studies
Title: Blog Post: Electric Cars: 100 Years Ago and Today     
Description: In this post, students will discover the history of electric car technology over the course of the last century. In the early 20th century, motorists had a choice of electric, steam, or gasoline cars, and it wasn't clear that any one type would dominate the market. Electricity was beginning to power home appliances, lights, and streetcars, so it seemed natural to put electric motors and batteries in carriages. Electric vehicles were clean, quiet, and comfortable, but most car buyers in the 1910s and 1920s chose gasoline cars, which had much longer range between fill-ups. Written by Roger White, Associate Curator for Road Transportation with the Division of Work and Industry, this post is published on the Museum's "O Say Can You See?" blog.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: 5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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Subject: Arts, Social Studies
Title: The Story Behind the Song: Brother Can You Spare a Dime?     
Description: When Americans were humbled by the Great Depression, this song gave voice to their fears and feelings of loss.
Thinkfinity Partner: ArtsEdge
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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