ALEX Lesson Plan

     

Alabama Fever!

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  This lesson provided by:  
Author:Ginger Boyd
System: Geneva County
School: Slocomb Elementary School
The event this resource created for:Alabama Department of Archives and History
  General Lesson Information  
Lesson Plan ID: 35106

Title:

Alabama Fever!

Overview/Annotation:

In this lesson, students will work in small groups to examine a letter describing the environment of Alabama and identify reasons which might have encouraged settlers to move to Alabama in the early nineteenth century.   Students will choose an interesting attraction of Alabama mentioned in the letter and design a postage stamp around that attraction. 

This lesson was created in partnership with the Alabama Department of Archives and History.

 Associated Standards and Objectives 
Content Standard(s):
English Language Arts
ELA2015 (2015)
Grade: 4
1 ) Refer to details and examples in a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from the text. [RL.4.1]


NAEP Framework
Anchor Standard::
Anchor Standard 1: Read closely to determine what the text says explicitly and to make logical inferences from it; cite specific textual evidence when writing or speaking to support conclusions drawn from the text.
Cognitive Target::
  • Identify textually explicit information and make simple inference with and across texts, such as: definitions, facts, supporting details.
  • Make complex inferences within and across texts to describe problems and solution or cause and effect, determine unstated assumptions in and argument.

NAEP Descriptor::
Recognize explicitly stated reason for character's statement in a story. (Locate and Recall)

NAEP Descriptor::
Interpret reason for character's statement and explain with support from story. (Integrate and Interpret)

NAEP Descriptor::
Recognize paraphrase of explicit details about a main character in a story. (Locate and Recall)

NAEP Descriptor::
Recognize story detail related to main action. (Locate and Recall)

NAEP Descriptor::
Recognize reason explicitly stated in a story. (Locate and Recall)

NAEP Descriptor::
Recognize reason for character's action in a story (explicit). (Locate and Recall)

NAEP Descriptor::
Recognize description of character's action explicitly stated in a story. (Locate and Recall)



Alabama Alternate Achievement Standards
AAS Standard:
ELA.AAS.4.1- Answer who, what, when, and where questions to demonstrate understanding of a story.


English Language Arts
ELA2015 (2015)
Grade: 4
12 ) Explain events, procedures, ideas, or concepts in a historical, scientific, or technical text, including what happened and why, based on specific information in the text. [RI.4.3]


NAEP Framework
Anchor Standard::
Anchor Standard 3: Analyze how and why individuals, events, and ideas develop and interact over the course of a text.
Cognitive Target::
Identify textually explicit information within and across texts to find evidence in support of an argument.
NAEP Descriptor::
Describe a process with text support. (Integrate and Interpret)

NAEP Descriptor::
Interpret information in expository passage to describe steps in a process. (Integrate and Interpret)

NAEP Descriptor::
Recognize best description of character based on action described in expository passage. (Locate and Recall)



Alabama Alternate Achievement Standards
AAS Standard:
ELA.AAS.4.12- Identify events, procedures, ideas, or concepts in an informational text.


English Language Arts
ELA2015 (2015)
Grade: 4
35 ) Report on a topic or text, tell a story, or recount an experience in an organized manner, using appropriate facts and relevant, descriptive details to support main ideas or themes; speak clearly at an understandable pace. [SL.4.4]


Alabama Alternate Achievement Standards
AAS Standard:
ELA.AAS.4.35- Report on a topic or tell a story, including a beginning, middle, and end and including relevant facts or details.


Social Studies
SS2010 (2010)
Grade: 4
Alabama Studies
4 ) Relate the relationship of the five geographic regions of Alabama to the movement of Alabama settlers during the early nineteenth century.

•  Identifying natural resources of Alabama during the early nineteenth century
•  Describing human environments of Alabama as they relate to settlement during the early nineteenth century, including housing, roads, and place names
Insight Unpacked Content
Strand: Geography, History
Course Title: Alabama Studies (Alabama)
Evidence Of Student Attainment:
Students:
  • Relate the relationship of the five geographic regions of Alabama to the movement of Alabama settlers during the early nineteenth century.
  • Identify natural resources of Alabama during the early nineteenth century.
  • Describe human environments of Alabama as they relate to settlement during the early nineteenth century, including housing, roads, and place names.
Teacher Vocabulary:
  • plateau
  • region
  • fall line
  • plain
  • river valley
  • flood plain
  • delta
Knowledge:
Students know:
  • The distinguishing characteristics of the five geographic regions of Alabama.
  • Alabama's key natural resources including cotton, iron, timber, and rivers.
Skills:
The students are able to :
  • Analyze the relationship between Alabama's natural resources and the settlement of the area during the early 19th Century.
  • Make the connection that a region of a state greatly affects the social and economic viability of that region.
Understanding:
Students understand that:
  • Settlers chose to live in regions based on the natural resources available in that region.
Alabama Archives Resources:
Click below to access all Alabama Archives resources aligned to this standard.

Alabama Alternate Achievement Standards
AAS Standard:
SS.AAS.4.4- Identify the five geographic regions in Alabama and the natural resources that attracted settlers to those regions.


Local/National Standards:

NATIONAL:  D2.Geo.8.3-5. Explain how human settlements and movements relate to the locations and use of various natural resources.

D4.2.3-5. Construct explanations using reasoning, correct sequence, examples, and details with relevant information and data.

 

Primary Learning Objective(s):

Students will:

1) examine a letter to identify reasons which might have encouraged settlers to move to Alabama in the early nineteenth century. 

2) design a postage stamp around an interesting Alabama attraction mentioned in the Joseph Noble letter.

Additional Learning Objective(s):

 

 

 Preparation Information 

Total Duration:

31 to 60 Minutes

Materials and Resources:

  • pencil
  • Joseph Noble Letter annotated transcribed page one from the Alabama Department of Archives and History
  • Joseph Noble Letter annotated transcribed page two from the Alabama Department of Archives and History
  • Joseph Noble Letter page one original annotated from the Alabama Department of Archives and History
  • Joseph Noble Letter page two original annotated from the Alabama Department of Archives and History 
  • Joseph Noble Letter page three original annotated from the Alabama Department of Archives and History
  • Joseph Noble Letter page four original annotated from the Alabama Department of Archives and History

Technology Resources Needed:

Background/Preparation:

For Students: 

Students should be knowledgeable about the five geographical regions of the state of Alabama.

For Teachers:  

  • Teachers may want to read pages 61-63 in The Alabama Guide:  Our People, Resources, and Government for detailed information about Alabama Fever and early settlement.

Williams, Randall, and Christine Garrett. The Alabama Guide: Our People, Resources, and Government 2009. Montgomery: Alabama Dept. of Archives and History, 2009. 61-63. Print.                                                 

  • Teachers may also wish to read pages 57-58 & 64-65 in Alabama:  The Making of An American State.

Bridges, Edwin C. Alabama: The Making of an American State. Tuscaloosa, Alabama: U of Alabama, 2016. 57-58. Print.         

  Procedures/Activities: 

Before:  Together with the students, brainstorm a list of reasons people move to a new city or state.  (examples:  lost their job, got a new job,  move closer to family, school, health, change in climate, marriage,).  Explain to students that people move because of many different reasons. One reason may be just to start a new life in a new place. 

In the early nineteenth century, many people were moving to Alabama because they saw moving to Alabama as an "opportunity" to purchase new land to grow cotton, and some people thought it was an opportunity for a chance to "benefit" from the many settlers moving into Alabama.  This time period is called "Alabama Fever". 

Many small towns were developing near rivers and industry was growing because of the demand for cotton.   Say, "We are going to read a letter from an actual "newcomer" to the state of Alabama during the early nineteenth century and look for evidence to describe environmental factors that might have encouraged him to move to Alabama. 

During: 

Step One:  Project the Joseph Noble letter from the Alabama Department of Archives and History on the Smart Board.  This is the original handwritten letter.  Point out the date written at the top of the letter and briefly discuss the time period. Students may have difficulty reading this letter because of its age and cursive handwriting.  An alternative would be to have the students pull the annotated transcribed copy of the Joseph Noble letter (page one) and Joseph Noble letter (page two) for easier viewing and reading on their IPADS, Chromebooks, laptops, etc.  (This may also be printed for students who don't have access to IPADS or Chromebooks). If students don't have any trouble reading the original handwritten letter here is the link for those pages: original annotated page one,  original annotated page two, original annotated page three,  original annotated page four,

Step Two:  Students will closely read the letter together in their small groups, and add comments to each of the annotations in red. (Comments can be added by clicking on the comment icon and typing their comment then clicking post comment.) 

Step Three:  Set the timer for 15 minutes for groups to complete their comments, then lead a discussion about some interesting attractions of Alabama mentioned in the letter that may have encouraged Joseph Noble and other settlers to move to Alabama.  Make a list of these on the board and compare them to the reasons listed earlier of why people move to a new city or state.  Are there similarities?

After: Distribute the rubric and directions for the Alabama Fever Postage Stamp and the postage stamp template. Working in their groups of 3 students per group, students will choose one of the interesting attractions in Alabama mentioned in the Joseph Noble letter and design a postage stamp around the attraction.  Their postage stamp should include the following: (1) the name of the state:  Alabama (2) a colored drawing of their interesting attraction in Alabama mentioned in the Joseph Noble letter, (3) a one-word adjective describing the interesting attraction.



Attachments:
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  Assessment  

Assessment Strategies

Students will be assessed based on the comments on the annotated letter from Joseph Noble and the rubric from the Alabama Fever Postage Stamp.

Acceleration:

Students can design a 3 scene comic on Witty Comics Website(Follow directions on Witty Comics Website - just click the pictures to change background, characters, and add text bubbles).  For each scene, students should choose a different character from the nineteenth century and inside their text bubble have the character give reasons why they decided to move to Alabama (farming - cotton production, retail business, a chance to purchase land, safe place to raise their family, etc.). 

Suggested Reading List: 

  • Working Cotton by Sherley Anne Williams
  • Araminta's Paint Box by Karen Ackerman
  • Covered Wagons, Bumpy Trails by Verla Kay
  • Dandelion by Eve Bunting
  • Rough, Tough Charley by Verla Kay
  • Great Pioneer Projects You Can Build Yourself by Rachael Dickinson

Intervention:

Students who need extra support should be placed in groups with teammates sensitive to the needs of that student.  The teacher may need to more closely supervise groups that contain students who are struggling with the concepts of the lesson.  Students may also be given additional time. 


View the Special Education resources for instructional guidance in providing modifications and adaptations for students with significant cognitive disabilities who qualify for the Alabama Alternate Assessment.