ALEX Lesson Plan

     

We, the People...

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  This lesson provided by:  
Author:Virginia Henshaw
System: Madison County
School: Central School
The event this resource created for:Alabama Department of Archives and History
  General Lesson Information  
Lesson Plan ID: 35125

Title:

We, the People...

Overview/Annotation:

In 1819 the Constitutional Convention met in Huntsville, Alabama in order to write our state's constitution. In this lesson, students will learn what a preamble is, as well as, read both the United States' Preamble to the Constitution and the preamble to Alabama's Constitution. Students will examine similarities between both preambles and discuss possible reasons for such similarities. Fifth-grade teachers could also utilize this lesson to examine and compare both preambles and their purposes. 

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
10 ) Refer to details and examples in a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from the text. [RI.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. Draw conclusions and provide supporting details.
  • Determine fact from opinion.
  • Identify textually explicit information within and across text, such as locating specific information in text or graphics. Make complex references within and across texts, such as draw conclusions and provide supporting information.

NAEP Descriptor::
Use examples from article to explain interpretation. (Integrate and Interpret)

NAEP Descriptor::
Recognize main questions answered by an article. (Integrate and Interpret)

NAEP Descriptor::
Interpret text details to select and provide one example. (Integrate and Interpret)

NAEP Descriptor::
Recognize explicitly stated information from an article. (Locate and Recall)

NAEP Descriptor::
Recognize explicitly stated information in an informational text. (Locate and Recall)

NAEP Descriptor::
Recognize cause explicitly stated in an informational text. (Locate and Recall)



Alabama Alternate Achievement Standards
AAS Standard:
ELA.AAS.4.10- Answer who, what, when, and where questions to demonstrate understanding of an informational text.


English Language Arts
ELA2015 (2015)
Grade: 4
11 ) Determine the main idea of a text and explain how it is supported by key details; summarize the text. [RI.4.2]


NAEP Framework
Anchor Standard::
Anchor Standard 2: Determine central ideas or themes of a text and analyze their development; summarize the key supporting details and ideas.
Cognitive Target::
  • Identify textually explicit information within and across text, such as topic sentence or main idea, locate specific information in text or graphics.
  • Make complex references within and across texts, such as summarize major ideas.

NAEP Descriptor::
Recognize the main topic of informational article. (Integrate and Interpret)



Alabama Alternate Achievement Standards
AAS Standard:
ELA.AAS.4.11- Identify the main idea of an informational text and details that support the main idea.


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
18 ) Integrate information from two texts on the same topic in order to write or speak about the subject knowledgeably. [RI.4.9]

English Language Arts
ELA2015 (2015)
Grade: 4
23 ) Write informative or explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas and information clearly. [W.4.2]

a. Introduce a topic clearly and group related information in paragraphs and sections; include formatting (e.g., headings), illustrations, and multimedia when useful to aiding comprehension. [W.4.2a]

b. Develop the topic with facts, definitions, concrete details, quotations, or other information and examples related to the topic. [W.4.2b]

c. Link ideas within categories of information using words and phrases (e.g., another, for example, also, because). [W.4.2c]

d. Use precise language and domain-specific vocabulary to inform about or explain the topic. [W.4.2d]

e. Provide a concluding statement or section related to the information or explanation presented. [W.4.2e]


Alabama Alternate Achievement Standards
AAS Standard:
ELA.AAS.4.23- Compose informative or explanatory texts by stating a topic, providing facts or details, and providing an appropriate conclusion related to the topic.


English Language Arts
ELA2015 (2015)
Grade: 4
25 ) Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development and organization are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience. (Grade-specific expectations for writing types are defined in standards 22-24 above.) [W.4.4]

Social Studies
SS2010 (2010)
Grade: 4
Alabama Studies
5 ) Describe Alabama's entry into statehood and establishment of its three branches of government and the constitutions.

•  Explaining political and geographic reasons for changes in location of Alabama's state capital
•  Recognizing roles of prominent political leaders during early statehood in Alabama, including William Wyatt Bibb, Thomas Bibb, Israel Pickens, William Rufus King, and John W. Walker
Insight Unpacked Content
Strand: Geography, History, Civics and Government
Course Title: Alabama Studies (Alabama)
Evidence Of Student Attainment:
Students:
  • Describe Alabama's entry into statehood as well as identify and explain the role of its three branches of government and the constitutions.
Teacher Vocabulary:
  • legislative
  • executive
  • judicial
  • constitution
  • senate
  • congress
  • house of representatives
  • governor
  • checks and balances
  • capital
  • capitol
Knowledge:
Students know:
  • Alabama has had six different constitutions. Alabama has three branches of Government: Executive, Legislative, Judicial.
  • The reasons why Alabama has had five different capitals.
  • The roles of prominent political leaders during early statehood in Alabama, including William Wyatt Bibb, Thomas Bibb, Israel Pickens, William Rufus King, and John W. Walker.
  • What the U.S. Constitution and the Northwest Territory require of a territory to become a state.
  • The history of early settlements in Alabama and the cession of Indian lands.
  • What it means to have a republican form of government.
Skills:
The students are able to:
  • Analyze Alabama's entry into statehood.
  • Identify and differentiate the roles of the three branches of government.
  • Compare and contrast Alabama's constitutions.
  • Explain political and geographic reasons for changes in location of Alabama's state capital.
  • Recognize roles of prominent political leaders during early statehood in Alabama, including William Wyatt Bibb, Thomas Bibb, Israel Pickens, William Rufus King, and John W. Walker.
Understanding:
Students understand that:
  • Many prominent people were involved in Alabama's entry into statehood and that our government was designed in a way that allowed a system of checks and balances to be in place.
Alabama Archives Resources:
Click below to access all Alabama Archives resources aligned to this standard.

Alabama Alternate Achievement Standards
AAS Standard:
SS.AAS.4.5- Identify the location of the state capital; recognize that Alabama is a state with three branches of government.


Local/National Standards:

National Standards for Civics and Government: What are some important beliefs Americans have about themselves and their government?

Primary Learning Objective(s):

I can explain the purpose of a preamble to a constitution. 

I can compare the US Preamble of the Constitution to the Alabama Preamble of 1819. 

I can read closely in order to gain information from texts. 

I can identify similarities of two given texts. 

I can write in order to share information about Alabama's preamble of 1819. 

 

Additional Learning Objective(s):

 
 Preparation Information 

Total Duration:

31 to 60 Minutes

Materials and Resources:

Preamble of the United States Constitution (attached)

Preamble of the Alabama Constitution 1819 

Transcribed Preamble of the Alabama Constitution 1819 

Computer or other technology device, projection system, and speakers to show the School House Rock video

School House Rock Video

Paper for the students to write their paragraph at the end of the lesson

Chart paper and marker (optional)

Highlighters for student use

Ten Fast Facts on the Constitution  http://constitutioncenter.org/constitution-day/about-constitution-day/10-fast-facts-on-the-constitution/ 

Technology Resources Needed:

Computer or other technology device, projection system, and speakers to show the School House Rock video

Internet access is needed to stream the video

Background/Preparation:

Students should be in the process of learning about Alabama's path to becoming the 22nd state. It is recommended that students have prior experience comparing texts; however, this is not required. 

Teachers need to review the US Preamble to the Constitution. Teachers should also read over the Alabama Preamble of 1819 (attached). Teachers should be prepared to explain the meaning of some words and phrases in both texts.

Teachers should determine an appropriate partner for each student for the comparison activity. 

Before the lesson, teachers need to make sure that they can present the School House Rock video.  

The following websites are available for further information about these topics: 

https://constitutioncenter.org/interactive-constitution

http://www.encyclopediaofalabama.org/article/h-3742

http://www.legislature.state.al.us/aliswww/history/constitutions/1819/1819overview.html 

  Procedures/Activities: 

Before:

1. Teachers should share background information with students on the U.S. Constitution. http://constitutioncenter.org/constitution-day/about-constitution-day/10-fast-facts-on-the-constitution/ 

2. Then transition into relating this experience to the Alabama Constitutional Convention in Huntsville, Alabama.(The Constitutional Convention was held in Huntsville on July 5, 1819. it was ratified on August 5, 1819.) 

Share with students:  http://www.legislature.state.al.us/aliswww/history/constitutions/1819/1819overview.html

3.  The function of a constitution is... (Possible things to share: a set of rules that a group follows, explains the function and responsibilities of branches of government, gives an explanation of the rights of members or citizens.) 

4.  Both the United States and Alabama's constitutions have preambles. 

5.  Watch the School House Rock video about the US Preamble. Tell students to watch with a purpose of identifying the reasons it was written: (to create a land of liberty, what the founding fathers set out to do, keep us free, share principles). Discuss after watching the video. Watch twice if needed. 

6.  Ask students: What do you think is the purpose of a preamble? (Possible answers: it introduces or explains a purpose of a document)

7.  Post or display and share the purpose of a preamble.  The purpose of a preamble is to introduce the document. It is an introductory statement that presents the purpose and aims of the documents. 

During: 

8. Read the U.S. Preamble to the Constitution with the students.

9. Remind students that the preamble...  (The purpose of a preamble is to introduce the document. It is an introductory statement that presents the purpose and aims of the documents.)

10. Read Alabama's Preamble. (Chunk the text. Either mark students' text or have them mark stopping points as you work through the preamble. Stop 1:After ALABAMA. Stop 2: end of the text. 

11. Read the first chunk to the students, then chorally read it. Then have students talk with partners about what they notice, have learned, or questions they have. You can allow them to use the margins of their page to record their thinking and learning. Then, have students tell you what they notice and what questions they have based on this text. It would be helpful if you recorded the questions and learning of the students (on the board or chart paper). If they recognize any similarities between the two preambles, you can go ahead and have them highlight them. 

12. Read the second chunk to the students, then chorally read it. Then have students talk with partners about what they notice, have learned, or questions they have. You can allow them to use the margins of their page to record their thinking and learning. Then, have students tell you what they notice and what questions they have based on this text. It would be helpful if you recorded the questions and learning of the students (on the board or chart paper). If they recognize any similarities between the two preambles, you can go ahead and have them highlight them. 

13. After you have read through and discussed both preambles, have students place the preambles side by side on their desks. Each student should have a highlighter. Have students work with a predetermined partner to locate similarities in both texts. Consider modeling the process of locating and highlighting a similarity, to insure that students have an understanding of this task. As students are working, observe students, monitor the classroom, and provide support and questioning as needed. 

After: 

14. Discuss the learning from reading the preambles and the similarities between both documents. If students did not notice that there are six "in order to" statements in each document that are similar take the time now to discuss the similarities. 

15. Pose this question to students and have students think (and record), then pair (share their thinking with a partner), and finally share with the class: Why does the Alabama Preamble of 1819 resemble the US Preamble?  If students do not mention how this shows there are similar beliefs shared presented in the federal document and the state document then ask leading questions to help students identify these similar beliefs. Discuss with students that these "in order to" statements show our core values as a state and nation. 

 Assignment: Have students use their notes, the anchor chart information, and primary sources to create a paragraph to inform others about Alabama's Preamble of 1819. 



Attachments:
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  Assessment  

Assessment Strategies

Observation and questioning should be used throughout the lesson to encourage on task behavior and support students in their learning. 

Reviewing student annotations can also be used as an assessment tool, because you will be able to have a visual of student thinking. 

The paragraph can be assessed using a rubric. Teachers can determine if students have an understanding of the purpose of a preamble as well as gaining a deeper understanding of Alabama's preamble. It should also be noted if students choose to identify similarities between both preambles in their writing. 

Acceleration:

Some students may have more questions related to this topic. If so, teachers can allow for further research time. 

If technology tools are readily available, students can be allowed to create a presentation on this topic in order to explain this topic to other students.

Students can also view the preamble of 1901 and compare it to the other two preambles used today (or preambles of other states). http://www.rense.com/general72/preamb.htm

For Further Reading: 

Preambles from other states:  http://www.rense.com/general72/preamb.htm

Additional Information about Alabama's  Constitutions:  http://www.legislature.state.al.us/aliswww/history/constitutions/1875/1875preamble.html

Alabama Territorial Legislature: http://www.encyclopediaofalabama.org/article/h-3742

Intervention:

For students who need extra support, consider meeting with them in small group in order to create their paragraph. Provide support as needed so that students are successful in their task. 

Also, consider each student's partner carefully so that students can support each other in their learning. 


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.