ALEX Lesson Plan


It's a Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow:  A Career Exploration Lesson for Middle-Schoolers

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  This lesson provided by:  
Author:Shannon Bogert
System: Tuscaloosa City
School: Tuscaloosa City Board Of Education
  General Lesson Information  
Lesson Plan ID: 33098


It's a Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow:  A Career Exploration Lesson for Middle-Schoolers


Through multiple lessons, middle school students will explore career choices, set educational goals, and create a media project in which they share information about their chosen career.

This is a College- and Career-Ready Standards showcase lesson plan.

 Associated Standards and Objectives 
Content Standard(s):
ELA2015 (7)
26. Conduct short research projects to answer a question, drawing on several sources and generating additional related, focused questions for further research and investigation. [W.7.7]
ELA2015 (7)
27. Gather relevant information from multiple print and digital sources, using search terms effectively; assess the credibility and accuracy of each source; and quote or paraphrase the data and conclusions of others while avoiding plagiarism and following a standard format for citation. [W.7.8]
ELA2015 (7)
30. Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on Grade 7 topics, texts, and issues, building on others' ideas and expressing their own clearly. [SL.7.1]
a. Come to discussions prepared, having read or researched material under study; explicitly draw on that preparation by referring to evidence on the topic, text, or issue to probe and reflect on ideas under discussion. [SL.7.1a]
b. Follow rules for collegial discussions, track progress toward specific goals and deadlines, and define individual roles as needed. [SL.7.1b]
c. Pose questions that elicit elaboration and respond to others' questions and comments with relevant observations and ideas that bring the discussion back on topic as needed. [SL.7.1c]
d. Acknowledge new information expressed by others and, when warranted, modify their own views. [SL.7.1d]
ELA2015 (7)
34. Include multimedia components and visual displays in presentations to clarify claims and findings and emphasize salient points. [SL.7.5]
ELA2015 (7)
36. Demonstrate command of the conventions of Standard English grammar and usage when writing or speaking. [L.7.1]
a. Demonstrate knowledge of subject-verb agreement when interrupted by a prepositional phrase, with inverted word order, with indefinite pronouns as subjects, compound subjects joined by correlative and coordinating conjunctions, and collective nouns when verb form depends on the rest of the sentence. (Alabama)
b. Explain the function of phrases and clauses in general and their function in specific sentences. [L.7.1a]
c. Choose among simple, compound, complex, and compound-complex sentences to signal differing relationships among ideas. [L.7.1b]
d. Place phrases and clauses within a sentence, recognizing and correcting misplaced and dangling modifiers.* [L.7.1c]
ELA2015 (7)
37. Demonstrate command of the conventions of Standard English capitalization, punctuation, and spelling when writing. [L.7.2]
a. Use a comma to separate coordinate adjectives (e.g., It was a fascinating, enjoyable movie but not He wore an old[,] green shirt). [L.7.2a]
b. Spell correctly. [L.7.2b]
ELA2015 (7)
38. Use knowledge of language and its conventions when writing, speaking, reading, or listening. [L.7.3]
a. Choose language that expresses ideas precisely and concisely, recognizing and eliminating wordiness and redundancy.* [L.7.3a]

Local/National Standards:


Primary Learning Objective(s):


1.  I can determine the characteristics of my chosen career.

2.  I can research my career and produce a multimedia project about my career.

Additional Learning Objective(s):

 Preparation Information 

Total Duration:

Greater than 120 Minutes

Materials and Resources:

paper, pens, current magazines that feature careers (Career Magazine, PC World, Businessweek, etc.)

Technology Resources Needed:



Students should be familiar with technology presentation tools (Prezi, slide show, Glogster, etc.)


Part One:
Before Activity (10 minutes--5 to brainstorm and 5 to share out. It is important that this is timed.)

1. Have students work with a partner. On a sheet of paper, have students brainstorm what their ambitions are for their adult work life. Give examples such as working outside, working with computers, making lots of money, etc.

2. Next, have students brainstorm career choices that they hope will have those attributions.

3. Ask each pair to share one of their ambitions and one of their career choices.

4. Explain to students that this week, they will be doing a research project about career choices.

During Activity: Career Exploration

1. Students should log in to Chromebooks/laptops and take career quiz found at

2.  After taking quiz, students should explore the different career pathways found under 15 Pathways to Success. They should find the student from the Industry Sector that matches their career choice.  Next, they should read and explore that area.

After Activity: By now, students should have chosen a career choice. Using their Chromebook/laptop, they should research their careers to find the answers to the questions found in the attachment. If they are unable to find the answers, they should list at least five websites where they searched. Magazines that feature current careers may be used as well.

Part Two:

In this lesson, students will complete a research project about their career, culminating in a multimedia presentation that should include the following:

Slide 1: Student’s first and last name and career choice.

Slide 2: A list of five reasons why student chose the career.

Slide 3: A picture that represents the career choice and a sentence explaining why the picture represents the career.

Slide 4:  Education that is required for your career including the coursework required and places where student could attend school in order to get this career.

Slide 5: Job requirements of the career.

Slide 6: Starting salary

Slide 7: List other careers that are similar to the chosen career. Using specific examples from websites and/or print sources, explain how the other careers are similar.

Slide 8: In one paragraph, explain how the chosen career would benefit mankind. Give specific examples to support your position.

Slide 9: Write a concluding paragraph about the next steps needed in order to achieve this career.

Slide 10: This will be the bibliography. List the websites and print sources used in the project.

**Some files will display in a new window. Others will prompt you to download.

Assessment Strategies

Students will be informally assessed by teacher while they are brainstorming. Standards will be assessed through performance on the media presentation. The rubric (see attached) will be used to score the presentation.


Teacher could have students write a cover letter for a potential job.


Teachers may provide specific websites students may use to research their projects. The lesson may be chunked so that students complete only two or three tasks per session for the multimedia presentation.

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.