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ALEX Lesson Plans


Subject: Social Studies (6), or Technology Education (6 - 8)
Title: Coming to America!
Description: Delve into living conditions of tenement housing for immigrants in New York in the 19th century with this lesson.  Students research and use primary sources to create a digital PhotoStory of an immigrant family of their choice. 


Subject: Mathematics (6), or Social Studies (6), or Technology Education (6 - 8)
Title: Hardships During the Great Depression
Description: Students will be divided into groups of 2 or more. Each group will be given a choice of jobs that were available during the 1930s. Students will learn to manage their cost of living and household expenses.


Subject: Character Education (K - 12), or English Language Arts (6), or Social Studies (6), or Technology Education (6 - 8)
Title: What Makes a Good or Bad Leader?
Description: After deciding on the criteria of a good leader, students research either a good or bad leader, create a class presentation of that person which focuses on his/her impact on history. Students then write and perform a three to four minute skit to illustrate the leader's impact on American life.


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.


Subject: English Language Arts (6), or Social Studies (6), or Technology Education (6 - 8)
Title: Christopher Paul Curtis and His Books: Bud, Not Buddy and The Watsons Go to Birmingham
Description: This interdisciplinary lesson on two books by C.P. Curtis features students in one classroom (or group) reading one of the books while the other class (or group) reads the other novel. Each class then divides into groups and researches the time period of its novel and develops presentations designed to encourage the reading of the second novel. These presentations are then presented to the other class.


Subject: English Language Arts (6), or Information Literacy (K - 12), or Social Studies (6), or Technology Education (6 - 8)
Title: Researching with the Alabama Virtual Library
Description: After an introduction to the Alabama Virtual Library, students use the available resources to research and present information about a United States president.


Subject: Social Studies (6), or Technology Education (6 - 8)
Title: Forming Unions
Description: This activity uses technology to generate interest in the study of labor unions. Students will use the Internet for research and conclude with a presentation about union leaders or labor organizations.


Thinkfinity Lesson Plans


Subject: Language Arts,Social Studies
Title: American Writers      Add Bookmark
Description: A permanent archive for educators, researchers, and everyone interested in the writers featured in the C-SPAN series.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 6,7,8,9,10,11



Subject: Social Studies
Title: History Wired      Add Bookmark
Description: This is an experimental program through which you can take a virtual tour of selected objects from the Museum's collections. The website links to 450 objects from the found on a customizable map that can be used to group objects in different ways. By voting for your favorite objects, you can change the map to reflect which objects have the most popular appeal.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: 4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Social Studies
Title: POTUS.com      Add Bookmark
Description: POTUS.com consists of detailed biographies of every president from George Washington to George W. Bush. Each president has a comprehensive individual section devoted to them specifically. In each section teachers and students can find a great deal of information about the (residents, including dates, cabinet members, general information, video and audio media resources. In addition, the site offers links to other helpful internet resources for each individual president. The site is a great starting point for students wishing to begin researching a specific president.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Social Studies
Title: American Presidents: Life Portraits      Add Bookmark
Description: This website was originally designed to complement C-SPAN's 20th Anniversary Television Series, American Presidents: Life Portraits, which debuted in 1999. The American Presidents website, created for the television series, contains a complete video archive of the series, additional resources of biographical facts, key events of each presidency, presidential birthplaces, libraries, and gravesites, as well as reference material. The site is a great starting point for students researching a specific president.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: 4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Social Studies
Title: Presidential Manuscripts: Library of Congress      Add Bookmark
Description: The Manuscript Division of the Library of Congress is the nation's oldest and most comprehensive presidential library. Although the website is older, it provides valuable images of original primary source documents related to 23 presidents, each paired with contextual information. This is a fantastic teaching resource for teachers who want their students to learn about the presidents and events in American History through the use of primary source documents.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: 4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Social Studies
Title: Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery      Add Bookmark
Description: The Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery tells the story of America through the individuals who have shaped U.S. culture. Their official online website features links to current, past, upcoming and online exhibitions, a collections search and educational resources including an The Great History Mystery, an interactive activity that focuses on great Americans as well anecdotal information that can be learned by examining their portraits. This important website will allow students and teachers to learn American history in a unique and interesting way.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Social Studies
Title: Freedom by the Fireside: The Legacy of FDR's ''Four Freedoms'' Speech      Add Bookmark
Description: In this EDSITEment lesson, students become familiar with the substance, context, subtext, and significance of the most famous portion of Franklin Delano Roosevelt's 1941 State of the Union Address--also known as the Four Freedoms speech. Students reach an understanding of the influence of political rhetoric and oratory on the ongoing process of refining our definitions of freedom, and learn to explain, on a very rudimentary level, longstanding theoretical debates over the scope and meaning of freedom. At the conclusion of the lesson, students can locate FDR, the United States Constitution, and their own attitudes within the context of these debates.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 6,7,8



Subject: Social Studies
Title: The White House Historical Association      Add Bookmark
Description: This website is a must-visit for students and teachers studying the history of the White House, or the presidency itself. The site contains timelines, historical photographs, historical tours, as well as links for further research. In addition, the site has entire sections devoted to students and the classroom. Information found on this site is likely not easily accessible elsewhere. It truly is a treasure-trove of information for students and teachers alike.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Social Studies
Title: Project HOPE: Forty Years of American Medicine Abroad      Add Bookmark
Description: In this online exhibition, students will learn how Project HOPE (Health Opportunities for People Everywhere), an American medical philanthropic organization, has impacted global health care. Currently, Project HOPE's education programs in southern Africa, Latin America, Central Europe and disadvantaged areas of the United States ensure that hundreds of thousands of people have access to basic medical services.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: 5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Social Studies
Title: Voices of US Presidents of the Twentieth Century      Add Bookmark
Description: The Vincent Voice Library at Michigan State University is working to preserve over 100 years of historical spoken word recordings like those of the U.S. Presidents, and shares some of the sound samples from its collection for students, teachers, and scholars on this website. The site is an easily searchable library of primary audio sources of any president from Benjamin Harrison to George W. Bush.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: 4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Social Studies
Title: History and Politics Out Loud      Add Bookmark
Description: History and Politics Out Loud is a searchable archive of politically significant audio materials of politically significant audio materials for scholars, teachers, and students. Speeches from the likes of twentieth century American Presidents, Supreme Court Justices, and major twentieth century political figures can be found on this site.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: 4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Social Studies
Title: America's Story      Add Bookmark
Description: This website, from the Library of Congress, was designed especially with young people in mind, but there are great stories and information for people of all ages. Through the use of short essays, biographies, interactive games and activities, students can explore every era of American history and learn interesting facts about all 50 states. This is a wonderful resource for any teacher of American history and geography.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Social Studies
Title: Presidential Timeline of the Twentieth Century      Add Bookmark
Description: Provides a single point of access to an ever-growing selection of digitized assets from the collections of the twelve Presidential Libraries of the National Archives. Includes documents, photographs, audio recordings, and video relating to the events of the presidents' lives (U. of Texas, Presidential Libraries).
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 4,5,6,7,8,9



Subject: Social Studies
Title: Library of Congress      Add Bookmark
Description: The Library of Congress, established in 1800 serves as the research arm of Congress and is recognized as the national library of the United States. Its collections comprise the world's most comprehensive record of human creativity and knowledge. Open to those above high school age without charge or special permission, it is the world's largest library and a great resource to scholars and researchers.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Social Studies
Title: The Presidential Timeline of the Twentieth Century      Add Bookmark
Description: This resource, designed by Learning Technology Center in the University of Texas at Austin College of Education, features an interactive timeline that tells the stories of the American presidents of the twentieth century, from Herbert Hoover to William Jefferson Clinton. Each presidents biographic information is included along with interpretation of the major issues and events of their presidencies. The site also allows students to view special exhibitions relating to twentieth century events like the Great Depression and the Vietnam War, and a gallery of personal images from the lives of each of these twelve presidents.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Social Studies
Title: Julia Child's Pyrex Measuring Cup      Add Bookmark
Description: The well-known cookbook author and television cooking show star Julia Child had a number of the most commonly used American kitchen measuring devices in her kitchen. Now in the collections of the National Museum of American History, Julia's Pyrex glass one- and two- cup measures, are marked in both English measurements (1 cup; 8 oz.) and in metric (250 ml). National Museum of American History
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Arts,Social Studies
Title: Smithsonian National Museum of American History      Add Bookmark
Description: The Web site for the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History features virtual exhibits, background on the museum, and an overview of the museum's collections. Also included are resources for teachers, the Smithsonian Store, and details regarding internships, workshops, and other opportunities to get involved.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Social Studies,Geography
Title: Emigration and Immigration to the United States, 1789-1930      Add Bookmark
Description: Collection of selected historical materials from Harvard's libraries, archives, and museums that documents voluntary immigration to the U.S.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: C1,7,8,9,10,11,12



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: Geography,Mathematics,Science,Social Studies
Title: density      Add Bookmark
Description: Density is the number of thingswhich could be people, animals, plants, or objectsin a certain area
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: C1,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Social Studies
Title: Four Freedoms for the Fourth      Add Bookmark
Description: This page from EDSITEment features resources relating to freedom, and presents information and activities about Franklin Delano Roosevelt's concept of The Four Freedoms. Learn more about political speeches, freedom, and the U.S. government by visiting the EDSITEment lesson plans and EDSITEment-reviewed Web sites referenced on this page.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Arts, Social Studies
Title: The Story Behind the Song: Brother Can You Spare a Dime?      Add Bookmark
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



Subject: Arts,Language Arts,Social Studies
Title: Humanities Articles      Add Bookmark
Description: This EDSITEment resource spotlights their selection of the best Humanities Web sites and provides links to the selected sites along with information about how sites are selected.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: K,C1,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: science, social studies
Title: Lakes and Rivers - Satellite Images      Add Bookmark
Description: Satellite Image Gallery. A gallery of satellite imagery from GeoEye of notable lakes and rivers around the globe
Thinkfinity Partner: National Geographic Education
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Arts,Health,Social Studies
Title: New Deal Network      Add Bookmark
Description: This EDSITEment-reviewed Blue Ribbon site contains documentary resources for the study of FDR and his Depression-era programs. Its mission is to inform new generations of the ideals and achievements of two important figures of the 20th century, Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt. It is a research and teaching resource devoted particularly to the New Deal public works and arts projects.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Social Studies
Title: In Motion: The African-American Migration Experience      Add Bookmark
Description: This EDSITEment-reviewed Web site, from The New York Public Library's Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, tells the story of 13 defining migrations that have formed and transformed African American history and the United States. Each migration is presented through five units: a narrative, about 100 illustrations, 20 to 40 research resources, maps and lesson plans. In total, the site includes more than 16,500 pages of texts, 8,300 illustrations and more than 60 maps.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: C1,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Social Studies
Title: Historic Maps in K-12 Classrooms      Add Bookmark
Description: This EDSITEment-reviewed Web site, from the Newberry Library, provides historically significant map documents for K-12 teachers and their students. Illustrating the geographical dimensions of American history, the maps are accompanied by lesson plans written for four grade levels and designed to support a variety of social studies, history and geography curricula.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Social Studies
Title: Eleanor Roosevelt Papers Project      Add Bookmark
Description: A project dedicated to bringing Eleanor Roosevelt's writings (and radio and television appearances) on democracy and human rights before an audience as diverse as the ones she addressed.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Cross-Disciplinary,Social Studies
Title: Automobile in American Life and Society      Add Bookmark
Description: The automobile's impact on American life is everywhere. Each of the site's five sections contains two essays, plus a select annotated bibliography or bibliographic essay to guide further reading.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Social Studies
Title: 1930s $100,000 U.S. Gold Certificate      Add Bookmark
Description: During the early 1930s, the United States and the rest of the industrialized world experienced an economic depression. In 1934, the United States continued its movement toward removing its currency from the gold standard. It even became illegal to possess gold coins or gold-based currency until Congress relented somewhat for collectors.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Health,Science,Social Studies
Title: Whatever Happened to Polio?: Activities      Add Bookmark
Description: These three activities, including an interactive game called "Got Ramps?'' , an animation illustrating the Lifecycle of the Polio Virus and a downloadable sheet for coloring, are part of the online exhibition entitled "Whatever Happened to Polio?'' , from the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History. "Got Ramps?'' illustrates the changes in architectural barriers between 1955 and 2005, before and after the Architectural Barriers Act (1968) and the Americans with Disabilities Act (1990). Playing the part of a wheelchair user, students choose a postcard and make the decisions required to deliver it to the post office. They can then email the virtual postcard to someone that they know. By viewing the animated "Lifecycle of the Polio Virus'' , students will learn how the poliovirus begins the infection process. Students can then use the downloadable illustration to color in the poliovirus lifecycle.
Thinkfinity Partner: Smithsonian
Grade Span: 3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Arts,Social Studies,Vocational Education,Adult and Family Literacy,Informal Education
Title: Picturing U.S. History      Add Bookmark
Description: ' Picturing United States History: An Interactive Resource for Teaching with Visual Evidence'' is a digital project based on the belief that visual materials are vital to understanding the American past. This website provides online '' Lessons in Looking,'' a guide to Web resources, forums, essays, reviews, and classroom activities to help teachers incorporate visual evidence into their classrooms. The '' Picturing U.S. History'' site will also serve as a clearing house for teachers interested in incorporating visual documents into their U.S. history, American studies, American literature, or other humanities courses.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: 6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Arts, Social Studies
Title: The Story Behind the Song: God Bless America      Add Bookmark
Description: In 1938, composer Irving Berlin dusted off an old piece of music to create a new national hit.
Thinkfinity Partner: ArtsEdge
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Arts,Language Arts,Social Studies
Title: American Memory Project: Main Index Page      Add Bookmark
Description: The main index page for the Library of Congress's American Memory Project gives users free access to more than 9 million items that document U.S. history and culture.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: K,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



Subject: Cross-Disciplinary,Social Studies
Title: America in Hard Times: How We Coped with Economic Adversity      Add Bookmark
Description: This EDSITEment resource spotlights Americas past times of economic difficulties and provides information on the history the Great Depression, FDRs Fireside chats, and Social Security with links to EDSITEment lesson plans and EDSITEment-reviewed Web sites.
Thinkfinity Partner: EDSITEment
Grade Span: C1,6,7,8,9,10,11,12



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
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Thinkfinity
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