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ALEX Lesson Plans


Subject: English Language Arts (2), or English Language Arts (2), or Social Studies (2 - 3), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Jet, Set, Go! Travel Google Earth in Ben's Dream
Description: This lesson uses the picture book by Chris Van Allsburg Ben’s Dream with Google Earth to highlight ten major landmarks of the world. After reading and discussing Ben’s Dream, students "travel" to each location using the free software Google Earth. Students will then be put into small groups by the teacher to research one specific landmark using the tools available on Google Earth (i.e., snapshots, Wikipedia links, etc.). Using their research skills, students locate these famous landmarks, conduct further research on them, and share that information with the class.


Subject: English Language Arts (2), or English Language Arts (2), or Social Studies (2), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: The Biography Project: Exploring the Past in 21st Century Ways
Description: Through this project-based lesson, students will do research on and create an oral presentation based on the life of an influential Famous American. Students will utilize various means to glean information, from online databases, various websites, and age-appropriate biographical literature to prepare for the final product: a "Living Wax Museum." Students will determine the most relevant information to write a script presented in the form of an oral presentation. The presentations will also be recorded and published as a podcast for sharing on the teacher's website.


Subject: English Language Arts (K - 2), or English Language Arts (K - 2), or Science (3 - 12)
Title: A Journey Through the Trees
Description: The teacher will discuss the importance of trees with the students. The teacher will provide photographs of various trees that grow in Russell Cave National Monument and the surrounding North Alabama area. The teacher will discuss significant features of each tree and pertinent ways to identify them. The collection may include: Dogwood, various Oak, Hickory, Pine, Maple, Cedar, Beech, Elm, and Birch trees. The teacher will take a nature walk with the students in order for each child to choose a tree and do a bark rub. The students will compare their art and write a journal entry in order to describe something they learned about their particular tree. This lesson plan is made possible through the ALEX and the U.S. National Park Service Partnership.


Subject: English Language Arts (2), or English Language Arts (2), or Social Studies (2)
Title: Exploring Customs and Cultures- Part 1
Description: Students meet both language arts and social studies objectives in this interdisciplinary unit on customs and cultures. In part 1 of the unit students practice research and writing skills to create a slideshow. In part 2 of the unit students explore culture through games and work with a partner to write a page in a class how-to book.


Subject: English Language Arts (2), or English Language Arts (2), or Science (2)
Title: The Magic of Water
Description: Students will use the Internet to learn about the water cycle by accessing various web sites. Students will create a document including pictures relating their knowledge about water and the water cycle.


Subject: English Language Arts (2), or English Language Arts (2), or Mathematics (K - 2), or Science (2), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Digging In For Dirt Day!
Description: This lesson is managed through stations that students will rotate around every 20- 30 minutes. Each second grade teacher conducts one station. Parent volunteers can also be used to manage stations. Students will use an auger to gather soil, produce a soil painting, make a dirt cup to represent layers of soil, do a Shake It Up! activity to examine how soil settles, and examine local soil. This lesson plan was created as a result of the Girls Engaged in Math and Science University, GEMS-U Project.  


Subject: English Language Arts (2), or English Language Arts (2), or Science (2), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: The Moon
Description: In this interactive activity, students will review details about the moon through children's literature. Students will also be responsible for collecting data about the moon and its phases. Finally, the students will produce original podcasts to display their data.This lesson plan was created as a result of the Girls Engaged in Math and Science, GEMS Project funded by the Malone Family Foundation.


Subject: English Language Arts (2), or English Language Arts (2), or Science (2), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: The Solar System
Description: The purpose of this lesson is to introduce students to the planets and sun in the solar system. Students will work together to research assigned planets and create an advertisement poster to promote their planet as a great vacation get away. Students will learn the order of the planets, the size of the planets, and some characteristics of each planet.This lesson incorporates technology, reading, writing, and art. This lesson plan was created as a result of the Girls Engaged in Math and Science, GEMS Project funded by the Malone Family Foundation funded by the Malone Family Foundation.


Subject: English Language Arts (2), or English Language Arts (2), or Science (2)
Title: How Light Travels
Description: In this lesson, the students will be experimenting to show how light shines in a straight line. They will also be experimenting to see how light reflects using mirrors. The students will be working in cooperative learning groups to carry out these experiments. Technology will be used to introduce and extend the activity.This lesson plan was created as a result of the Girls Engaged in Math and Science, GEMS Project funded by the Malone Family Foundation.


Subject: English Language Arts (2), or English Language Arts (2), or Social Studies (2), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Reptile Adventure
Description: During this lesson, students work with small groups and partners on reptile research. They will have the opportunity to use books and the Internet for research. They will also go on a reptile adventure searching for new information about reptiles.


Subject: English Language Arts (2), or English Language Arts (2), or Mathematics (1 - 2), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Fortune Cookie Verbs
Description: During this lesson students have the opportunity to create fortune cookies and identify the verbs in the fortunes.


Subject: English Language Arts (2), or English Language Arts (2), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Legendary Lighthouses
Description: In this technology-based interdisciplinary lesson, students will discover many facts about lighthouses by navigating the Internet. Students have the opportunity to use the facts they learn to create their own stories about lighthouses.


Subject: English Language Arts (2 - 3), or English Language Arts (2 - 3), or Information Literacy (K - 12)
Title: Play the Dewey Decimal System Game
Description: This lesson introduces the 10 main categories used in the Dewey Decimal Classification System for non-fiction bookshelf arrangement. A slideshow will be presented to students to help them learn details about the Dewey Decimal Classification System. Students will be able to demonstrate what they learn through participating in an interactive game.


Subject: English Language Arts (2), or English Language Arts (2), or Mathematics (K - 1), or Science (2), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Creepy Caterpillars to Beautiful Butterflies
Description: Students will explore the life cycle of a butterfly using a website and observations of caterpillar metamorphosis. This lesson will incorporate science, mathematics, language arts, and art.


Subject: English Language Arts (2), or English Language Arts (2), or Science (2), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Luscious Layers of Life...A Walk Through the Rainforest
Description: This lesson provides students with an opportunity to learn about the animals and plant life that live in the various layers of the tropical rainforest. Students will view a slideshow with many different facts and pictures of the rainforest. They will also research animals and plants of the rainforest by searching Internet sites. Students will also share what they learn through an typed report.


Subject: English Language Arts (2), or English Language Arts (2), or Science (2), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Dig It!
Description: Children will enjoy learning about dinosaurs through the use of technology, research, hands-on activities, discussions, and written and oral presentations. This unit will help students to collaborate as a group and manage their own time.


Subject: English Language Arts (2 - 3), or English Language Arts (2 - 3), or Information Literacy (K - 12), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Do We Have It and Where Can I Find It?
Description: Students will use the electronic card catalog to locate books in the Media Center. Students will determine if the Media Center has a particular item, if it is currently available, and where the item is located in the Media Center.


Subject: English Language Arts (2 - 4), or English Language Arts (2 - 4), or Information Literacy (K - 12), or Technology Education (3 - 5)
Title: Introduction to the Dewey Decimal System
Description: This lesson introduces the Dewey Decimal System of numbering used for arranging nonfiction books on the shelves of an elementary school library.


Subject: English Language Arts (2), or English Language Arts (2), or Science (1), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Habitats
Description: What is a habitat? In this lesson, students will identify that a habitat has four elements, food, water, shelter, and space. Students will identify their own habitat and create a brochure describing the habitat in terms of food, water, shelter, and space. They will work in cooperative groups to create a multimedia presentation describing the food, water, shelter, and space needs of one animal.


Subject: English Language Arts (1 - 2), or English Language Arts (1 - 2), or Science (1 - 2), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Beginner's AVL (Alabama Virtual Library)
Description: Students will research the red fox using an online encyclopedia from the Alabama Virtual Library web site and answer questions provided by the teacher. This is a good lesson for students' first experience in using the AVL.


Subject: English Language Arts (2), or English Language Arts (2), or Mathematics (K - 2), or Science (1 - 2), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Very Busy Spiders
Description: The students will work from a computer and a specified Webquest to complete a unit on spiders. The lessons will incorporate literature, writing, science, art, and graphing.


Subject: English Language Arts (2), or English Language Arts (2), or Technology Education (K - 2)
Title: Introduction to PowerPoint
Description: Second grade students will view a teacher-made digital slideshow. The teacher will then walk the students through the process of opening PowerPoint or other presentation software, picking a slide format and adding text.


Thinkfinity Lesson Plans


Subject: Language Arts
Title: Let's Build a Snowman      Add Bookmark
Description: In this lesson, students use both fiction and nonfiction texts, the Internet, and a K-W-L chart to learn about how animals survive the winter.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Language Arts,Social Studies,Arts
Title: If You Were a Pioneer on the Oregon Trail      Add Bookmark
Description: In this lesson, from EDSITEment, students compare imagined travel experiences of their own with the actual experiences of 19th-century pioneers. After creating, as a class, oral stories about contemporary cross-country journeys, students learn about the experiences of the emigrants who traveled on the Oregon Trail. They then create works of historical fiction in the form of picture books, drawing upon the information they have learned.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Acrostic Poems: All About Me and My Favorite Things      Add Bookmark
Description: Students create acrostic poems using their names and the names of things that are important to them.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 1,2



Subject: Arts,Language Arts,Science
Title: Under the Deep Blue Sea      Add Bookmark
Description: In this EDSITEment lesson, students have the opportunity to explore oceans and ocean life. After locating the earth's major oceans on a world map, students dive underwater to discover the plants and animals that live in the sea. Students listen to stories and poems with oceanic settings and learn about the forms of sea life featured in each. They can add their own artwork and text about ocean animals and plants to a cut-away ocean display. Finally, students engage in various forms of creative writing about the ocean and ocean life.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Language Arts
Title: On this day in 1918, the United States passed the U.S. Standard Time Act.      Add Bookmark
Description: A video conference with a class from a different country or time zone is planned. Students brainstorm questions to ask and figure out how many time zones they would have to travel through to have the conference.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Adventures in Nonfiction: A Guided Inquiry Journey      Add Bookmark
Description: Students are guided through an informal exploration of nonfiction texts and child-oriented Websites, learning browsing and skimming techniques for the purpose of gathering interesting information.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Native Americans Today      Add Bookmark
Description: This lesson challenges students' views of Native Americans as a vanished people by asking them to compare their prior knowledge with information they gather while reading about contemporary Native Americans.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: 3,4,5



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Reading and Writing About Whales Using Fiction and Nonfiction Texts      Add Bookmark
Description: Students will have a whale of a good time in this lesson in which they use fiction and nonfiction texts to write a letter to an online scientist.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Martin Luther King, Jr. and Me: Identifying with a Hero      Add Bookmark
Description: This lesson provides ideas for celebrating Martin Luther King, Jr. Day by encouraging students to explore the connections between Dr. King and themselves through journaling and inquiry-based research.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Listen, Look, and Learn: An Information-Gathering Process      Add Bookmark
Description: After listening to and discussing the story Score One for the Sloths, primary students research the sloth. Students use a variety of resources, including an information wheel graphic organizer.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Social Studies - Geography
Title: 'Adopt'' a Geographic News Story      Add Bookmark
Description: In this lesson, from Xpeditions, students are introduced to some stories from National Geographic News and then invited to discuss the reasons why it is a good idea to follow the news. The class adopts a geographic news story, designs posters to illustrate it, and researches related topics.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Arts,Foreign Languages,Language Arts,Social Studies
Title: EDSITEment Websites      Add Bookmark
Description: This page from EDSITEment provides links to top humanities sites on the Web. All sites linked to EDSITEment have been reviewed for content, design, and likely impact in the classroom. They cover a wide range of humanities subjects, from American history to literature, world history and culture, language, art, and archaeology, and have been judged by humanities specialists to be of high intellectual quality. EDSITEment is the product of a partnership forged among the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Council of the Great City Schools, WorldCom Foundation and the National Trust for the Humanities and is a member of the MarcoPolo consortium.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Animal Study: From Fiction to Facts      Add Bookmark
Description: Students listen to fiction and nonfiction read-alouds and explore selected Websites to identify factual information about animals. This lesson focuses on ants, but can be adapted to any animal.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Language Arts
Title: From Fact to Fiction: Drawing and Writing Stories      Add Bookmark
Description: Students gather factual information about frogs and toads to create nonfiction and fiction stories. Drawing is used for prewriting.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Living the Dream: 100 Acts of Kindness      Add Bookmark
Description: This lesson provides the action piece for any study of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. In this project, students participate in Dr. King's dream by doing 100 acts of kindness.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Authentic Writing Experiences and Math Problem-Solving Using Shopping Lists      Add Bookmark
Description: Students use their emerging writing skills to write shopping lists. They work within a budget, use problem-solving skills to create lists, and buy their favorite treats at the class store.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Predicting and Gathering Information With Nonfiction Texts      Add Bookmark
Description: Students take a walk on the wild side when they develop an understanding of nonfiction texts with hands-on experiences and intense analysis.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Social Studies - Geography
Title: Geography Skills and Your Town      Add Bookmark
Description: In this Xpeditions lesson, students relate the five themes of geography (location, place, human/environment interaction, movement, and regions) to their own home town. Students first gather information about their town and then create books, Web sites, or multimedia presentations showcasing their town's unique features.
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Investigating Animals: Using Nonfiction for Inquiry-based Research      Add Bookmark
Description: Inspired by their curiosity about animals, students work together to research an animal of their choice and present the information they gather to an authentic audience.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Language Arts
Title: A-Hunting We Will Go: Teaching Rhyming Through Musical Verse      Add Bookmark
Description: Adapting the song '' A-Hunting We Will Go,'' students put a whale in a pail and even '' take a little bear and hug it if we dare.''
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: K,1,2



Subject: Language Arts
Title: Note Writing in the Primary Classroom      Add Bookmark
Description: This lesson provides a wealth of ideas for using notes in the classroom to promote authentic writing among children.
Thinkfinity Partner: ReadWriteThink
Grade Span: K,1,2



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