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ALEX Lesson Plans


Subject: English Language Arts (7), or Social Studies (7), or Technology Education (6 - 8)
Title: World Traveler
Description: Seventh grade social studies students will create a passport and detailed daily travel journal. The project will incorporate a minimum of two types of technology as they create a narrative vividly describing a city/country. Specific details of the geography, people, their culture, government and particular points of interest will be included. Pictures will be downloaded and used to illustrate the location and or adventure.


Subject: Social Studies (7), or Technology Education (6 - 8)
Title: Exploring Asia
Description: Students (in groups of 2 or 3) will gather information on an assigned Asian country. After organizing the required information, students will develop a PowerPoint presentation to be presented to the class.


Subject: English Language Arts (7), or Social Studies (6 - 7), or Technology Education (6 - 8)
Title: Personal Heritage Project
Description: This research project requires students to connect with the past by researching both primary and secondary sources for family history. Their findings are presented in a keepsake portfolio and in a multimedia presentation comparing the historical time period of an ancestor to their own.


Thinkfinity Lesson Plans


Subject: Social Studies
Title: Xpedition Hall      Add Bookmark
Description: Built around the National Geography Standards, Xpedition Hall is a virtual museum that is filled with interactive exhibits designed to provoke reflection on how human beings shape and are shaped by the world in which we live. The Hall contains one exhibit for each of standard, and groups these exhibits into six galleries, which correspond to the standards six underlying '' elements.'' Students use can use an image or map of the Hall to navigate through the exhibits.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Arts - Photography - Social Studies - Anthropology - Social Studies - Geography
Title: What Does a Picture Tell You About Culture?      Add Bookmark
Description: This Xpeditions lesson uses photographs to create an understanding of cultural landscapes. Students analyze photographs from around the world and make hypotheses about the similarities and differences of cultures based on the photographs they look at.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: 5,6,7,8



Subject: Science - Astronomy - Social Studies - Geography
Title: The Riddle of the Russian Lights      Add Bookmark
Description: In this Xpeditions student activity, students use maps to help an astronaut figure out why a string of lights zigzags across southern Russia. They examine maps depicting population density, average annual temperature, transportation density, and railroad networks to come up with the answer.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Arts - Architecture - Science - Engineering - Social Studies - Geography - Social Studies - World History
Title: Wonderworld      Add Bookmark
Description: In this Xpeditions student activity, students design a theme park devoted to great feats of architecture and engineering. Famous monuments they study in preparation for designing their parks include Stonehenge, the Panama Canal, the Pyramids of Giza, and more.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Social Studies - Economics - Social Studies - Geography
Title: Where Do Your Possessions Come From?      Add Bookmark
Description: In this lesson, from Xpeditions, students learn about the activities involved in producing their own belongings and gain an understanding of and appreciation for the Earth's natural resources. In the process, they may become more conscious consumers.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Science - Meteorology - Social Studies - Geography
Title: Spice World      Add Bookmark
Description: In this Xpeditions student activity, students create a map showing the origins of the spices and herbs that help flavor their favorite dishes. Related activities for parents to do with their children are also found on this page.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Social Studies - Current Events/Issues - Social Studies - Geography - Social Studies - World History
Title: Raise the Flag for the European Union      Add Bookmark
Description: In this Xpeditions student activity, students research the countries of the European Union (EU) and use this knowledge--along with their creativity--to create a flag for the EU. This activity asks students to consider the physical and cultural characteristics of member countries, existing maps, and other background information in order to come up with an appropriate combination of symbols to represent the EU member countries.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Social Studies - Geography - Social Studies - United States History - Social Studies - World History
Title: Cultural Symbols and the Characteristics of Place      Add Bookmark
Description: This Xpeditions lesson explores how the cultures of ancient and modern people are reflected in their cultural symbols. Students compile a series of photographs that show buildings, structures, or statues that represent a city, place, or region.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Social Studies - Geography - Social Studies - United States History - Social Studies - World History
Title: Culture in the Cupboard      Add Bookmark
Description: This Xpeditions lesson helps students identify some of the cultures new to their part of the world and to understand more about cultural diffusion. They analyze items found in each other's cupboards and closets to determine what the items reveal about the residents cultural heritage.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Language Arts,Social Studies
Title: Mapping the Past      Add Bookmark
Description: This EDSITEment lesson provides students with experience in working with historical maps as cultural artifacts that reflect the views of particular times and places. They trace the evolving world view from medieval times through the Renaissance as recorded in maps of those eras, investigate how cultural assumptions influenced the process of mapping the American West, and discover what present-day maps can tell us about our world view and cultural aspirations.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Social Studies - Economics - Social Studies - Geography
Title: Products Across Borders      Add Bookmark
Description: In this Xpeditions lesson, students identify foreign products available in the United States and learn about U.S. companies that sell products abroad. They discuss globalization and illustrate two maps to show where products come from and where they're sold.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Social Studies - Anthropology - Social Studies - Geography
Title: International Food Court      Add Bookmark
Description: In this lesson, from Xpeditions, students learn about the characteristics of the world's regions by investigating the types of food that are common in those regions. They also conduct research to find out about the climate, landscape, and cultures of a few countries. They compile their findings into a plan for an international food court in a local mall.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Social Studies - Geography
Title: Where in the World Would You Like to Live?      Add Bookmark
Description: In this lesson, from Xpeditions, students compare thematic maps of the continents and the world as a whole to determine where they would like to live. They view several online thematic maps and conclude by writing paragraphs describing the three places in the world they think they d most like to live.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Science
Title: Cities Are Urban Ecosystems      Add Bookmark
Description: This Science NetLinks lesson, the first of a five-part unit titled '' Urban Ecosystems: Continuity and Change,'' introduces some of the principles of ecology. Students are introduced to the study of ecosystems and models that are used by urban ecologists. The class is then invited to visit Web sites to see where the cities are on the planet, and they have a chance to try some hands-on urban nature education activities.
Thinkfinity Partner: Science NetLinks
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Social Studies - Geography
Title: Oil and Water in the Middle East Region      Add Bookmark
Description: In this lesson, from Xpeditions, students explore the roles of oil and water in the Middle East, especially in Iraq. Students use maps to look at the distribution of oil in the Middle East and discuss what it means for the different countries in the region. They also examine how water has influenced the region historically (in the fertile crescent region between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers) and politically (for example, how Iraq's access to water is limited to one small part of its border). Finally, they study specific aspects of Iraq's struggles with water, using satellite imagery to understand and illustrate the problem.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Health - Disease - Mathematics - Applied Mathematics - Science - Biology - Social Studies - Geography
Title: Africa's Struggle With AIDS      Add Bookmark
Description: In this Xpeditions lesson, students come to understand the enormity of the impact of AIDS on the population of Africa by comparing its effect there with its effect on the population of the world in general, and especially on that of the United States. After locating Africa on a world map, and individual sub-Saharan nations on a map of Africa, students examine charts and graphs to find and compare data about AIDS in Africa, the world, and the United States.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Foreign Languages - Cultural Awareness - Social Studies - Anthropology - Social Studies - Geography
Title: Comparing Cultures      Add Bookmark
Description: In this Xpeditions lesson, students use the Internet to find out about the cultures and customs of Nepal, Japan, or the Mentawai tribe of Indonesia. They compare three customs from one of these cultures to customs in the United States. Students conclude by writing paragraphs imagining that they have visited with the people of one of these cultures.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Social Studies - Anthropology - Social Studies - Geography - Social Studies - Human Behavior
Title: Weeping Camel: How Do Rituals Compare?      Add Bookmark
Description: In this Xpeditions lesson, students identify characteristics of traditional and modern rituals found in different cultures. Through reading articles and watching videos of several rituals, students identify some of their characteristics. Finally, students apply their understanding to modern rituals in their own lives. This lesson uses an interactive Venn diagram.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Arts - Photography - Social Studies - Geography - Social Studies - Human Behavior
Title: Extreme Photography: Life Through the Lens of Jimmy Chin      Add Bookmark
Description: In this Xpeditions lesson, students explore how culture and experience influence people's perceptions of places and regions. They explore the photography of National Geographic Emerging Explorer Jimmy Chin and brainstorm ways people in various occupations interact with the cultures they visit.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Social Studies - Geography - Social Studies - World History
Title: What is Asia?      Add Bookmark
Description: This Xpeditions lesson introduces students to diversity in Asia. After considering what is meant by the term '' '' Asia,'' '' students identify the various regions in Asia and consider factors for determining what is considered a '' '' region.'' '' At the conclusion, students answer the question: '' '' What is Asia?'' ''
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Social Studies - Geography
Title: Investigating Central Asia Through Maps      Add Bookmark
Description: In this Xpeditions lesson, students use physical, political, and thematic maps to investigate the geography of Central Asia through a scavenger hunt. Students explore ways in which the region of Central Asia is defined and create their own map-based scavenger hunt for other students to solve.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Social Studies - Anthropology - Social Studies - Geography - Social Studies - World History
Title: Mission Geography: Europe      Add Bookmark
Description: In this Xpeditions lesson, students research and learn about the culture, physical geography, and history of selected countries in Europe. Acting as '' '' tour operators,'' '' small groups of students create an imaginary tour group itinerary that highlights interesting and important destinations as well as characteristics of their selected countries.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: 6,7,8



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