Monday, June 29, 2015

Native Americans Southwest Desert Indians

I absolutely love this unit and it has so much in the way of literature!

I am usually still working on summarizing and central idea (or main idea) so  we continue to read the legends and  folktale.There are a ton of legends and myths for the Pueblo people and in our state standards the students have to be able to compare and contrast themes, topics and stories.


Coyote: a Trickster Tale from the American Southwest
The kids love this book-- and I take the time to create a Venn Diagrm to compare and contrast  this book and the Raven: A trickster tale from the Pacific  Northwest

I also read the book Arrow in the Sun


 I read parts of the nonfiction Book The Pueblo and their History  so that I can continue practicing with them how to summarize nonfiction information.

Close Reading Cooperative groups: Jigsawing!

A Thematic Unit for Southwest Native Americans 
This book is a must have. (You could easily find the information in other resources, but I downloaded the Ebook into my dropbox so I have it at school and at home. )
Each student is given a blank chart, Each group is given a fact sheet , they will highlight and write the most important information down on a chart. I will divide the groups  so that each group has at least one person who will teach the information to the rest of the new group.  All students will teach their information, and in turn take notes in their chart based on what the other group members wrote down from their group.

Shared Reading:
close read SW coast
Three Sisters

Word Study:
*pueblo  Pictures
* Three Sisters
*kachina doll
*mesas Pictures

Hopi Dance- nice background of Pueblos
Pottery making (Mr. Rogers is in this one!)
Assessments: (cause we have to have grades in the grade book)
True or False activity
Three sisters 

Friday, June 26, 2015

Native Americans: Northwest Coast

I want to share some of my favorite resources for my Native American Unit.  For South Carolina Standards we have to teach: Northwest Coast, Southwest Coast, Great basin, Great Plains, Eastern Woodlands
I usually spend about 3-4 weeks on the Native American Unit. I use Daily 3 plus an ipad workstation and a Social studies workstation.  Daily there are two rotations, and independent reading is a required rotation daily.  I try REALLY hard to totally integrate my ELA and social studies. At the beginning of the year, I begin with summarizing as my focus skill for the week. -- beginning with fiction and then nonfiction. . The resources I use for my Reading Workshop/Daily 3 for the Northwest coast are these:

Shared reading:

I will use this as a small group reading-- I will discuss what a biography is- the prefix bio and the affix graph-- 

There are various articles that I use in this book for whole class, and for their notebooks.  Being that Summarizing is the focus skill, we will read and summarize.  Will will organize the information onto a tree map.

Read a-louds 
If you lived with the Northwest Coast Indians

Group activity to go with the book

Read a-louds: 
Raven: A Trickster Tale from the Northwest


Totem Tale: A Tall Story from Alaska

For every book we read, we will summarize.  I use the somebody wanted but so for our fictional books and I have students summarize the central idea with 3-4 details that support for nonfiction. 

Word Study:
Potlatches, suffixes

The Wind Picks Up

Assessments: (Only because we have to have grades in the grade book.)
Northwest Coast true/False
close read/reading comprehension
Totem Pole Project 
Rubric for project
totem pole facts- this is a great resource for their totem poles, or it would be amazing to use for a group teambuilding activity where students made a totem pole for their group.
coloring pages of totems (I use for clip art on my calendar and newsletter)

Writing assignment
I found this writing Writing task assignment for  third grade, but it is very complex, and it would still be challenging for my fourth graders.  I plan to use it this year; however, it will take a lot of guidance.

Just music with various totem poles

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

The First Americans!

(4-1.1 )
Summarize the spread of Native American populations using the Landbridge Theory.    

This is the first required indicator of the school year per the SC State Standards.  I use a variety of resources to teach this standard and I absolutely love integrating ELA, science and writing into this mini-unit. 


Being that I have many ESOL students-- and am expecting one that speaks very little English, I found this activity-- where they will act it out and then write about the event.
(In regard to the new SCCC standards and indicators -- which are VERY similar to the CCSS--this covers C1.3; and W2.1)

A book I absolutely love is Mammoths on the Move! By Lisa Wheeler

This book uses poetry to tell about the mammoths migrating. The Author's craft is fantastic! Not only does it have a rhyme scheme, but you can find several types of figurative language in the book also.

On this page alone you can have conversations about alliteration and onomatopoeia.  The illustrations are just amazing!
I use this book for these indicators: RL9.1, RL9.2 RL12.1; These indicators cover- imagery, word choice, structure of a poem, and mood.
Another poem that I use is 
"The First Americans."  Be patient with this resource-- the poem is located at the end of the lesson in the Appendix. (pg 13) It is worth it!  I also use the passage right in front of it as a close read!
 (indicators for the close read are RI10.6, RI12.3, C1.2, and RI8.1 and for the poem I revisit RL9.1, RL9.2 and RL12.1-- much of these are examining the poem for how the author is using words and phrases to paint an image and/or mood for the reader.)
In addition, I found a free resource with a poem called Beringia. I can't wait to implement this one this year.  

One of the first big writing assignments I do with my students is an opinion writing. We discuss the extinction of mammoths, and also the desire for scientists to "clone" the mammoth.  Scroll down through the article to see this short video--  "The De-Extinction of Mammoths."

(I1.1, I2.1, I3.2, W.1, C1.5)
First we make a T chart. Next, we brain storm  reasons why we SHOULD bring them back from extinction, and reasons we SHOULDN'T bring them back. Students then choose a position, and create a tree map.  

Being that the new ELA standards (and Common Core for that matter) have a large communication area, I will probably have them debate their ideas before formally writing about them. 
 (I1.1, I2.1, I3.2, W.1, C1.1, C1.2,  C1.5)

Hopefully, I can stay on top of things-- and I will add additional units this summer.  I totally stink at keeping up with my blog during the school year.  Kudos to those teachers that can  and do!!

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