ALEX Lesson Plan


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  This lesson provided by:  
Author:Christina Holt
System: Shelby County
School: Oak Mountain Middle School
  General Lesson Information  
Lesson Plan ID: 2501


Welcome to All?


This lesson is designed to be taught after an introduction to immigration history or as a culminating activity. This is a hands-on, technology-based lesson that relates a student's individual immigration history to the boom of immigration in the late 1800's through the early 1900's. This lesson also gives students insight into the rise of anti-immigrant feelings in the United States during this time period.

 Associated Standards and Objectives 
Content Standard(s):
TC2 (6-8)
5. Use basic features of word processing, spreadsheets, databases, and presentation software.
Examples: word processing—reports, letters, brochures
spreadsheets—discovering patterns, tracking spending, creating budgets
databases—contact list of addresses and telephone numbers
presentation software—slideshow
TC2 (6-8)
11. Use digital tools and strategies to locate, collect, organize, evaluate, and synthesize information.
Examples: locating—Boolean searches, graphic organizers, spreadsheets, databases
collecting—probeware, graphing calculators
organizing—graphic organizers, spreadsheets
evaluating—reviewing publication dates, determining credibility
synthesizing—word processing software, concept-mapping software
SS2010 (6) United States Studies: The Industrial Revolution to the Present
1. Explain the impact of industrialization, urbanization, communication, and cultural changes on life in the United States from the late nineteenth century to World War I.
SS2010 (6) United States Studies: The Industrial Revolution to the Present
2. Describe reform movements and changing social conditions during the Progressive Era in the United States.
  • Relating countries of origin and experiences of new immigrants to life in the United States
  • Example: Ellis Island and Angel Island experiences
  • Identifying workplace reforms, including the eight-hour workday, child labor laws, and workers' compensation laws
  • Identifying political reforms of Progressive movement leaders, including Theodore Roosevelt and the establishment of the national park system
  • Identifying social reforms of the Progressive movement, including efforts by Jane Adams, Clara Barton, and Julia Tutwiler (Alabama)
  • Recognizing goals of the early civil rights movement and the purpose of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP)
  • Explaining Progressive movement provisions of the Sixteenth, Seventeenth, Eighteenth, Nineteenth, and Twenty-first Amendments to the Constitution of the United States
  • Local/National Standards:


    Primary Learning Objective(s):

    Students will explain why immigration boomed in the late 1800's and early 1900's. Students will list reasons for anti-immigrant feelings in America.

    Additional Learning Objective(s):

    Students will discuss the magnitude and significance of the immigration movement from 1900-1928.

     Preparation Information 

    Total Duration:

    91 to 120 Minutes

    Materials and Resources:

    Students' individual family history from parents, paper, construction paper, glue, scissors, colored pencils or markers

    Technology Resources Needed:

    Computers with Internet access, MS Word or other word processing software, color printer desirable but b/w printer can be used


    Students should have been introduced to immigration prior to this activity, including appropriate terms and definitions. They should also have basic word processing skills.

    1.)Begin the lesson by introducing yourself as a descendent of an immigrant to America (teacher may need to research family history). Dress in clothes that are native to your family's homeland, if possible. Discuss the fact that the only "true Americans" are the Native American people. Discuss the reasons your ancestors came to America.

    2.)Have the students refer to their family histories (brought from home as an assignment) as you show on the overhead an example of your family tree. Pass out a 11" x 14" sheet of paper to each student. Instruct the students to draw their family trees using the information they have on the family history pages. (Allow 30 minutes for this process.)
    (Ancestral Chart)
    A template that may be used for student information.

    3.)Once the students' family trees are as complete as possible, discuss how they might find out more information about their individual families on the Internet. Take the class to the computer lab or allow classroom computer time. Direct students to access the Alabama Virtual Library. Students can conduct a search for information about particular names from different sources. Students should be able to locate a more specific area from which individual members of their families originated. Students need to conduct searches for every blank on the family tree in order to completely fill it out completely. The tree should be complete back to the late 1800's or approximately 4 generations. (This step should take about 50 minutes
    (Alabama Virtual Library)
    At the AVL location, students should click on Campus and Library, scroll down to #4 then choose Infotrac Jr. Edition.

    4.)Once the students' family trees are complete discuss the reasons why people would have migrated to America from particular parts of the world. Students will need to have previous knowledge about world events that could have caused a migration to America. Discuss what was so desirable about America that so many people wanted to come here. Have students write a one-page paper describing why their ancestors left their homelands to come to America. In this paper students are to explain where in America their families settled and how their families survived in America. How do they think early settlers felt about "foreigners" coming to America, competing for jobs, and changing the customs and culture of America?

    5.)Instruct students to take their family trees and mount them on posterboard. They are to include any photographs of the family members on their family tree. Students will also mount their typed papers on the bottom right side of the poster. Once complete these are to be turned in for a grade. Encourage students to print neatly and darkly or type labels for the names on the family tree. This needs to be legible from a distance. As an extra activity students can be asked to share their posters with the class as a whole or in small groups.


    Assessment Strategies

    Rubric: Scale from 1 (poor) - 5 (excellent)
    1. Is the poster neat?
    2. Are all of the blanks on the tree completely filled in?
    3. Are there pictures?
    4. Is the one-page paper attached?
    5. Does the paper answer the required questions?
    6. Was the poster turned in on time?





    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.