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This lesson provided by:
Author: Antoine Fletcher
Organization:National Park Service
Lesson Plan ID: 32043
Title:

The Medicine Leaf Man

Overview/Annotation:

The teacher will briefly discuss Mississippian time period medicine men. The teacher will read Leaf Man by Louis Elhert and discuss leaves of various trees that grow in Russell Cave National Monument and the surrounding North Alabama area that were used for medicinal purposes. Students will then create a medicine man using the discussed medicinal leaves and tree parts.

This lesson plan is made possible through the ALEX and the U.S. National Park Service Partnership.

Content Standard(s):
SS(2) Exploring Our Nation and World: People and Places1. Compare features of modern-day living to those of the past.
SS(4) Alabama Studies2. Describe cultures, governments, and economies of prehistoric and historic Native Americans in Alabama.
SC(K) 9. Identify seasons of the year.
SC(1) 4. Describe survival traits of living things, including color, shape, size, texture, and covering.
SC(3) 7. Describe the life cycle of plants, including seed, seed germination, growth, and reproduction.
AED(K) Visual Arts6. Identify artistic characteristics of cultures, times, and places.
AED(1) Visual Arts1. Create works of art using a variety of techniques.
AED(2) Visual Arts2. Apply analogous and intermediate colors, symmetrical balance, and geometric and organic shapes in the production of works of art.
Local/National Standards:

As a result of activities in grades K-4, all students should develop understanding of science as a human endeavor.

Primary Learning Objective(s):

  • Demonstrate basic knowledge of a Mississippian time period medicine man.
  • Identify seven medicinal plants found around Russell Cave.
  • Describe medicinal uses for the plants found.
Additional Learning Objective(s):  
Approximate Duration of the Lesson: Time Not Specified
Materials and Equipment:

  1. Leaf Man by Louis Elhert
  2. Basswood leaf – 1 per student
  3. Yellow Poplar leaf- 1 per student
  4. Red Maple Leaf- 2 per student
  5. Sourwood Leaf- 4 per student
  6. Black Walnut Leaf- 2 per student
  7. Sweet Gum ball- 1 per student
  8. Acorn- 2 per student
  9. Contact paper
  10. low temperature glue gun
Technology Resources Needed:

Digital projector, computer, screen - interactive or not.

Background/Preparation:

  1. It is recommended that this lesson be taught in autumn.
  2. Collect leaves, acorns, and gumballs
  3. Group baskets containing the following for a group of 3-4 students:

A. Basswood leaf – 1 per student

B. Yellow Poplar leaf- 1 per student

C. Red Maple Leaf- 2 per student

D. Sourwood Leaf- 4 per student

E. Black Walnut Leaf- 2 per student

F. Sweet Gum ball- 1 per student

G. Acorn- 2 per student

4. Cut contact paper into 16”x 18” pieces (2 per student)

Procedures/Activities:

Introduction:  

1. Introduce Mississippian medicine men to students by viewing Medicine Men PowerPoint.

  • While viewing PowerPoint, compare and contrast Mississippian time period and modern-day lifestyles.
  •  Compare/Contrast: clothing/accessories, medicine, living/working areas
  • Venn Diagram may be used if time permits

 Lesson:

2. Read Leaf Man by Louis Ehlert to students. Allow students to view various types of leaves used to make the leaf creatures.

  • Discuss with students the season in which this story takes place
  • Tell students that many of these plants were used by medicine men to make medicine long ago.

3. Group students in groups of 3-4

  1. Send one student to get 1 basket of supplies for the group
    1. Suggest students handle leaves and seeds with care.
    2. Allow 2 minutes for students to look at each item in the basket and talk to fellow group members about leaf/seed characteristics

 

  1. View Medicinal plants PowerPoint
  • After each plant slide, have students identify the leaf discussed from their collection of leaves according to the descriptions given. 
  • Groups should work together to locate each leaf.
  • After identifying each leaf, have students discuss with their group members their experience with these plants.

Activity

Students will be using items from their basket to make their own Medicine Leaf Man.

  1. Students should remove one piece of contact paper from their basket remove the protect paper exposing the adhesive side. (This might be tricky for some students. Assistance from another adult or peer helpers is recommended.)
  2. Have students identify the Basswood by using the slideshow previously viewed. This will be the body of the medicine leaf man. Place this leaf in the middle of the adhesive side of the contact paper.
  3. Repeat this step for additional body parts, make sure to use the previously viewed powerpoint for students to identify leaves with their groups:
  • Tulip Poplar: head
  • Sourwood: arms/legs
  • Red maple: hands
  • Black walnut: feet
  1. After assembling Medicine Leaf Man, students should place the remaining contact paper strip on top of their creation to cover the leaves. Press firmly on and around leaves to remove bubbles and wrinkles from contact paper.

10.  Students should then cut around the leaf man to give it a distinct shape, leaving about ½ inch border of contact paper around the edges to keep the leaves sealed together.

11.  Students should then locate one sweetgum ball for the Medicine Leaf Man’s mouth and two acorns for its eyes.

12.  Teacher will then use a low-temp glue gun to glue on eyes and mouth.

 

 


Attachments:**Some files will display in a new window. Others will prompt you to download. MedicineManppt.pptx
Assessment Strategies:

Sumarize by asking these questions:

  • Review with students the job of the Mississippian medicine man and medicinal leaves used to make their leaf man.

 

  1. Optional informal assessment:

-Kindergarten-1:

  • What was a Native American doctor called?
  • How was the medicine man different/ same from our doctor today?
  •  What did the medicine man use to make people feel better? Name a tree we discussed today and what it was used to cure.

                           -Grades 2-4: Multiple Choice/ Short Answer      assessment attached:

Extension:

Sumarize by asking these questions:

  • Review with students the job of the Mississippian medicine man and medicinal leaves used to make their leaf man.

 

  1. Optional informal assessment:

-Kindergarten-1:

  • What was a Native American doctor called?
  • How was the medicine man different/ same from our doctor today?
  •  What did the medicine man use to make people feel better? Name a tree we discussed today and what it was used to cure.

 

Remediation:

PowerPoints may be reused throughout the activity and summary

Peer-tutors may be assigned to assist with leaf identification

Each area below is a direct link to general teaching strategies/classroom accommodations for students with identified learning and/or behavior problems such as: reading or math performance below grade level; test or classroom assignments/quizzes at a failing level; failure to complete assignments independently; difficulty with short-term memory, abstract concepts, staying on task, or following directions; poor peer interaction or temper tantrums, and other learning or behavior problems.

Presentation of Material Environment
Time Demands Materials
Attention Using Groups and Peers
Assisting the Reluctant Starter Dealing with Inappropriate Behavior

Be sure to check the student's IEP for specific accommodations.
Variations Submitted by ALEX Users:
Alabama Virtual Library
Alabama Virtual Library

Hosted by Alabama Supercomputer Authority
The University of Alabama at Birmingham
The University of Alabama at Birmingham
The Malone Family Foundation
The Malone Family Foundation
Thinkfinity
Thinkfinity
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