Design Project Theme: Using Project Based Learning to Teach The United States Constitution

Using Project Based Learning to Teach The United States Constitution

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Introduction

This page was designed to help Social Studies teacher integrate project based learning and technology into their classroom. Project based learning is can be used as a valuable teaching tool by making the classroom interesting and engaging. Technology can make the learning environment interesting and engaging for the learner by take the imagination out of history and bring it to life visually. It is important to keep the classroom interesting and engaging for the learner because they are being exposed to new technology at young ages thus making conventional teaching methods out dated and boring. The learner is constantly seeking high-tech ways to communicate with their peers. Why not adapt this formula to your classroom. Imploring technology allow teachers to reach all learning types. Project Based Learning can engage the visual, audio, and kinesthetic learners. The use of various types of technology in the classroom, gives students access to use materials that they might not ordinarily have access to outside of school.

This unit Plan is Developing and testing the national Government. These lessons where developed for 11th Grade American History and Government classes with 25 students in them and classes would be limited to 50 minute classes. This lesson was taught in my United States History and Government class. The class is for eleventh graders and is a full year course, beginning Colonization of America and ending with contemporary issues. I place a special emphasis on the American Revolution, the Drafting of the Constitution Civil War & Reconstruction, the Progressive Movement, WWI, the Great Depression, WW II, The Civil Rights Movement, and The Cold War. There is also a strong focus on the principles of American Government and the Constitution. I believe that these topics have forever changed the course of American history. In each class I try to impart the importance of the struggles that Americans have endured and how America has progressed throughout American history to the students.

Needs Assessment

Instructional Problem: How to successfully integrate technology into a high school history class?

This Unit is designed to help Social Studies teachers, integrate technology into a social studies class. The instructor will use Smart Board and LCD technology to develop engaging and informative lesson for high school social studies classes.

Learning Assessments

Building on prior knowledge the instructor will began a new unit on the Constitution. The lessons are designed to develop and enhance the students knowledge of the United States Constitution.

The learners will be assessed both formally and informally. The instructor will use informal oral assessment to determine comprehension of prior lessons. (Engagement Questions used to start class.) The instructor will use formal quizzes and test to test the learners comprehension of lessons.

Performance Objectives

  • The learner will be aware of the struggle that framers of the Americans Constitution encountered trying to outline the laws in the United States government.
  • At the end of the unit the learner will have a better understanding of the rights that are granted to learner in the United States Constitution.
  • The goal of the class is to impart to the learner the importance of Judicial Review, Checks and Balances and the importance of the Dred Scott decision to American History.
  • The learner will be able to define segregation and explain the effect of segregation in America during the period of Reconstruction.
  • The Learner will have a better understanding of African Americans struggle for equality throughout 20th century.
  • The Learner will be able to identify and explain the Civil Rights Movement.
  • At the end of the unit the learner will have better communication, research and development and team building skills.

During this unit students will develop and enhance the following skill:

  • Reading comprehensions skills
  • Research skills
  • Presentation skills
  • Listening skills
  • Problem solving skills
  • Enhance vocabulary
  • Develop enhanced understanding of the American Constitution

At the end of the Unit the learner will be able to answer the following:

Essential Questions

  • Why did the Colonist seek to develop a weak central government at the close of the Revolutionary War?
  • What problems were inherent in the Article of COnfederation?
  • What philosophical and political ideals did the Framers of the Constitution draw from writing the Constitution?
  • How did the Framers of the Constitution use compromise to ensure that the COnstitution would reflect different point of view?
  • How did the Framers of the Constitution ensure that the governmental power would be shared between national and state governments?
  • How did the Framers of the Constitution ensure that the no branch of government had more power than the other?
  • How does the Constitution ensure Civil Liberties?

Learning Standards

New York State Learning Standards

Social Studies Standard 1, 2, 3

  • Key Ideal: The evolution of democratic values and beliefs

Social Studies Standard 5

  • Key Ideal: The roles rights and responsibilities of citizenship, including avenues of participation.

Social Studies Standard 6

  • Key Ideal: Knowledge of basic government documents and principals.

English Language Art Standard 1

  • Key Ideal: Students will be able to read and write for critical analysis.

English Language Art Standard 3:

  • Key Ideal: Students will listen, speak, read, and write for critical analysis and evaluation.

English Language Art Standard 4:

  • Key Ideal: Students will, listen, speak, read and write for social interaction.

Task Analysis

Evaluation of students

Student will be evaluated both formally and informally. The formal evaluation of the students will occur when student take their daily quiz, student will also be formally assessed by Mr. Moultrie when they present their court case. The informal evaluation of the students will take place when Mr. Moultrie walks around the Media Center to ensure all parties in the group are fully participating. In addition the learner will be assessed orally when the Mr. Moultrie reviews the previous day’s class work. To assess the learner understanding of the United States Constitution Mr. Moultrie will divide the students into groups and given them a court case and students will have to present fact of the case to the class and detail the ramification this case had on American History. The students will also be evaluated by the essay they write about the effect that their court case has had on the American History. The learner will be assessed in a variety of ways. The learner will be assessed by the presentations. The learner will be assessed with the daily quiz. Additionally, the Learner will have there ability to create an argument assessed when they hand in there one page essay in. The essay will be turned in at the conclusion of class presentations.

Evaluation of the lesson

The lesson evaluation will come from the grade the Mr. Moultrie gives the student on their presentation and The Constitution exam. The goal of the class is to have 90 percent of the class pass The Constitution exam with a grade of 85 or better. The goal for the presentations is to have 90 percent of the students to have 17 point in each of the five boxes or a total score of 85. Additionally, the grading the behavior of the students in the Media Center will determine if this lesson needs to be tweaked. If the students behave and are attentive in the Media Center and 90 percent of the class receives 85 percent or better on the reaction, the presentation and The Constitution exam then I will consider it a success. If the student do not receive 85 percent or better I will then allot more time in the Media Center to work on the research and extra day for presentations and review.

Unit Objectives

The objective of this unit is convey to the learner the importance of the United States Constitution. At the end of the unit the learner will have an in-depth understanding of the rights that are granted to the learner in the United States Constitution. Additionally, the learner will be cognoscente of the struggle that the framers of the Constitution encountered when attempting to develop the laws that would govern the United States. At the end of each lessons the learner will enhance their communication, research and cooperative learning skills.

Goals of Unit

  • The learner will be aware of the struggle that framers of the Americans Constitution encountered trying to outline the laws in the United States government.
  • The goal of the class is to impart to the learner the importance of Judicial Review, Checks and Balances and the importance of the Dred Scott decision to American History.
  • The learner will have an understanding of the segregation that took place in America during the period of Reconstruction.
  • The Learner will be able to identify the Civil Rights Movement. The Learner will have a better understanding of African Americans struggle for equality throughout 20th century.
  • At the end of the lesson the learner will have a better understanding of the rights that are granted to learner in the United States Constitution.
  • At the end of the lesson the students will have better communication, research and development and team building skills.


Unit 1 John Marshall Court Cases

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John Marshall Court Case Unit

media:John Marshall Court Cases.pdf

Rational for John Marshall Court Case

The objective of this lesson is to get the learner to understand the importance of the United Sates Constitution. At the end of the lesson the learner will have a better understanding of the rights that are granted to learner in the United States Constitution. Additionally, the learner will be aware of the struggle that framer of the Americans Constitution encountered trying to outline the laws in the United States government. At the end of the lesson the students will have better communication, research and development and team building skills.

This lesson is designed to enhance the learner knowledge of the United States Constitution. The learners will use the provided website to enhance there knowledge of the rights provided to them in the Constitution. The learner will be aware of the struggle that Americans encountered trying to outline the laws in the United States Constitution. At the end of the lesson the students will have better communication, research and development and team building skills. According to the National Research Council, in order for students to learn they must have an extended understanding of new situations. (p.171) “Students learn by assimilation; that is they fit new information into their existing knowledge.” (p.223) Student must build on there prior knowledge to learn new concepts. The teacher must then build on that prior knowledge by inserting facts so the student can reach the mastery level. The student should be able to piece the information together, so they can fill in the blanks of a given subject and use the new information to develop a hypothesis and or solve a problem.

This lesson is designed to be taught over two to three days in 50 minute class. The first day the students will meet in the Media Center. The second day the students will meet in the Media Center to finish the project. If time permits on Day 2 Mr. Moultrie will began to review The John Marshall Court Case Fact Sheet. Day 3 the student will meet in the classroom. Each student will need the information; this project will take place of lecture and notes on these court cases. Each student will write an essay for homework on Day 3 that will detail the effect their court case had on American History.

Objective

The objective of this lesson is to get the learner to understand the importance of the United Sates Constitution. At the end of the lesson the learner will have a better understanding of the rights that are granted to learner in the United States Constitution. Additionally, the learner will be aware of the struggle that framer of the Americans Constitution encountered trying to outline the laws in the United States government. At the end of the lesson the students will have better communication, research and development and team building skills.

Cognitive Outcome

The learner is expected to be able to read for understanding; decode and The United States Constitution is the most important document in American history. The framers of the United States Constitution developed a living breathing document that would govern the United States. This document has only been changed twenty seven times over the course of two hundred plus years. This document and these court cases are imperative to American history because they are court cases that outline the role the Federal Government will play in the live of American citizens.

By working collaboratively student will develop better communication, research and development and team building skills. By using this lesson in all classes including Integrated Special Education and Advanced Placement classes I am trying to decrease the digital divide that exist. Severin and Tankard define digital divide as “inequality in access to computers and online information. (Severin and Tankard p.377)

According to the National Research Council, in order for students to learn they must have an extended understanding of new situations. (p.171) According to Mayer “Students learn by assimilation; that is they fit new information into their existing knowledge.” (p.223) Student must build on there prior knowledge to learn new concepts. The more I use lesson like this my students will become computer and internet literate. This will hopefully increase the student’s self-interest in technology and decrease the Knowledge Gap.




Unit Two The Civil Rights in Perspective

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The Civil Rights in Perspective Unit

media:TheCivilRIghtsinperspective.pdf

Civil Rights in Perspective Unit Objective

The Learner will be able to identify the Civil Rights Movement.

The Learner will have a better understanding of African Americans struggle for equality throughout 20th century. At the end of the unit the learner will have a better understanding of the rights that are granted to learner in the United States Constitution. The over arching goal of the lesson is to have 90 percent of the class pass The Civil Right Movement exam with a grade of 85 or better.

Unit Rationale

According to Semail “media literacy teaches students to take a critical stance when they read, view or think about textual or media representation. One broader goal of such critical education is enable students to understand and critique the curriculum of the media in order to conceptualize social/economic justice more clearly.” (Semail, L P.37.) Media literacy is essential to students so they can “to understand our own society and to make it better. (Semail, L P. 40) According to the social learning theory students should work in groups to learn socials skills from each other. (Severin & Tankard, Jr P 278) student will have a better understanding of media literacy. According to the disinhibition hypothesis student “television lowers people’s inhibitions about behaving aggressively towards other people.” (Severin & Tankard, Jr P 287)

Cognitive Outcome

At the end of the lesson the learner will have an enhanced development of team building skills, reading comprehension skills, critical thinking and writing skills and aural skills. The learners will develop these skills as they work together in groups and develop newspaper articles for their given topic.

Working in groups the learner will identify and develop important “life skills that which have been defined as those necessary to succeed” in life. (Forneris p.103) The students will learn this information through assimilation. According to Mayer, Students learn by assimilation; that is they fit new information into their existing knowledge.” (p.223) Students must have prior knowledge. The teacher must then build on that prior knowledge by inserting facts so the student can reach the mastery level. The student should be able to piece the information together, so they can fill in the blanks of a given subject and use the new information to develop a hypothesis and or solve a problem.

Resources

Mayer, E. Richard; 2008 Learning and Instruction Second Edition Pearson Education Inc.

National Research Council 2000, How People Learn: Brian Mind, Experience and School. Expanded Edition National Academy of Sciences

Forneris, T., Danish, S., & Scott, D. (2007, Spring2007). SETTING GOALS, SOLVING PROBLEMS, AND SEEKING SOCIAL SUPPORT: DEVELOPING ADOLESCENTS' ABILITIES THROUGH A LD7E SKILLS PROGRAM. Adolescence, 42(165), 103-114. Retrieved March 11, 2011, from Academic Search Premier database.

Practical Techniques for Testing Comprehension in Extensive Reading Author(s): Walter V. Kaulfers Source: The Modern Language Journal, Vol. 17, No. 5 (Feb., 1933), pp. 321-327 Published by: Blackwell Publishing on behalf of the National Federation of Modern Language Teachers Associations Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/314617 Schramm-Pate, S., & Lussier, R. (2003, December). Teaching Students How to Think Critically: The Confederate Flag Controversy in the High School Social Studies Classroom. High School Journal, 87(2), 56-65. Retrieved March 11, 2011, from Academic Search Premier database.

Semail, l 2005 Why Media Literacy Matters in American Schools. In G Schwarts and P. Brown Media Literacy: Transforming

Severin, W Tankard, J. (2001). Communication Theories: Origins, Methods, and Uses in Mass Media (5th Ed.) Addison Wesley Longman, New York


Dred Scott Decision Retrieved from http://www.worldfreeinternet.net/news/nws19.htm November 2005

Rubric Retrieved from http://www.marquette.edu/library/training/oral.doc April 14, 2006

The Constitution Retrieved from http://www.law.emory.edu/index.php?id=3080 April 2011

Retrieved from http://bama.ua.edu/~peira003/newspap2.htm April 2011

Retrieved from http://www.loyola.edu/edudept/facstaff/marcovitz/Et605/NewsletterWord.html April 2011

Retrieved from http://www.marquette.edu/library/training/oral.doc April 2011

Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RWX_pjyIq-g&feature=related April 2011

Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lvc9_HlYw4g&feature=related April 2011

Retrieved from http://www.civilrightsmuseum.org/ April 2011

The following background information and questions were adapted from the following website. Marbury V. Madison (1803) McCulloch V. Maryland (1819) Gibbons V. Ogden (1824) Retrieved from http://www.landmarkcases.org/ April 2011

The following background information and questions were adapted from the following website. Dartmouth V. Woodward (1819) Worcester V. Georgia (1832) Retrieved from http://odur.let.rug.nl/~usa/D/1801-1825/marshallcases/marxx.htm April 2011