Category Archives: English/ Language Arts

mushrooms

Fungi, mushrooms and ethnomycology

📖STANDARDS

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.6.4 Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative, connotative, and technical meanings.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.6-8.3 Follow precisely a multistep procedure when carrying out experiments, taking measurements, or performing technical tasks.

LESSON TIME

75- 150 minutes – time may vary dependent on optional activities

📃SUMMARY

Vocabulary and historical events key to mycology are provided in a slide presentation. Students learn more about mycology through videos and activities, including mushroom dissection, crossword puzzle, word journal and actual or virtual collection of mushrooms. Academic vocabulary is at the 7th grade level. The lesson ends with a game and an optional virtual field trip to a mushroom farm.

📚Lesson

Presentation on Fungi and Indigenous Peoples Use of Mushrooms

Introduce vocabulary, mycology, and Indigenous cultures and histories of the usage of fungi with this slide presentation on fungi and Indigenous peoples use of mushrooms. The same presentation as a PowerPoint is found here.

Mushrooms on the Warm Springs reservation

VIDEO: Fungi Lesson for Kids & Crossword Puzzle

First, pass out this crossword puzzle. Let students know that the answers to the crossword are in this video. It’s a great way to get your students to pay close attention to the video and retain the information.

ANSWER KEY FOR CROSSWORD PUZZLE – I apologize for my poor handwriting.

Fungi Lesson for Kids (7:36) is a resource from the Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History that introduces students to fungi structure, growth and variety.

Complete word journal with new vocabulary

Students add words or terms with which they are unfamiliar to their word journal. Some teachers call it a personal dictionary, to others it’s a word journal. Regardless, the goal is the same, for students to record new words, give a dictionary definition and “make the word their own”. This can be done by rewriting the definition in their own words, using the word in a sentence or including an illustration of the word.

Two dictionary sites to recommend for definitions are below. An added bonus to mention to students is that they can hear words pronounced.

Since students often ask for an example, here is an example you can link in your lesson

The personal dictionary assignment, with all links, can be found here. Feel free to copy and paste into your Google Classroom or other site, or print out for your class.

Be Naturalist: Dissect a mushroom

  • WATCH AND LEARN: Mushroom Dissection: Have students watch the mushroom dissection video from the Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History as preparation for the mushroom dissection activity. (7:40) Inform students if they have not been able to solve the crossword puzzle, they may find the answers in this video.

Mycology Workbook

The instructions below can be copied and pasted in Google Classroom or other CMS.

  1. Students can choose between making a mycology journal out of construction paper, notebook paper, and drawing paper stapled together or an individual or collaborative digital mycology document using Google Docs.
  2. Find and identify at least 8 mushroom species.
    1. WALKING TOUR: If you live in an area known for mushroom fruiting and it’s fall or spring, there will be a good chance of mushrooms. Students can sketch mushrooms they find or take a picture of them with a phone or an iPad to include in Google Docs or print out and paste into their workbook.
    2. VIRTUAL TOUR: If you don’t have an area to walk to find mushrooms, search the internet for types of mushrooms you can include in your workbook. Here is a good place to start. https://www.mushroomcouncil.com/varieties/

Differentiated Instruction: Extra activities to make science fun.

Play Making Camp: Deer and Salmon

Students can play Making Camp: Deer and Salmon modules for 15 minutes. (Game will be available Fall, 2022). The following instructions can be copied into Google Classroom, pasted into a Zoom chat or given in class.

Visit the Games Portal for Kids and select this game

MAKING CAMP: DEER AND SALMON

Play through until you reach the LIFE tab and select the GATHERING tab. It is the one that matches the icon at right.

Optional: Virtual Field Trip to a Mushroom Farm

This virtual field trips is to R & R Cultivation (34 minutes) will teach students about the process of growing mushrooms. We bet at least one or two facts about mushroom farming will come as a big surprise. They will also discover many different types of mushrooms.

ASSESSMENT

This lesson includes five forms of assessment

  1. Crossword puzzle, matching words to definitions.
  2. Word journals are graded based on correct or incorrect definition. 
  3. Mycology workbooks are graded based on the number of species identified.
  4. Mushroom sketches based on dissection.
  5. Making Camp Deer & Salmon Reports (Coming Soon)
Codex

The Codex in Latin American History and Math

Standards

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RH.6-8.2 Determine the central ideas or information of a primary or secondary source; provide an accurate summary of the source distinct from prior knowledge or opinions.

CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.6.RP.A.3 Use ratio and rate reasoning to solve real-world and mathematical problems, e.g., by reasoning about tables of equivalent ratios, tape diagrams, double number line diagrams, or equations

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.7.1 Write arguments to support claims with clear reasons and relevant evidence.

Technology required

Device with a browser for AzTech Game. Printer for printing codex and related worksheet and activity pages.

Time

4-5 hours

Lesson Summary

This is an augmentation of a lesson from the Library of Congress uses a primary source – the Huexotzinco Codex – as a basis for document analysis, inquiry and applied mathematics. Students analyze pages documenting tribute paid to Spanish administrators, compute the tribute paid, read a one-page overview of the codex and analyze the codex. A presentation is given on connections between Aztec, Mayan and contemporary methods. Students begin or end classes playing a game that includes Mayan history and middle school mathematics.

Lesson

First, some background for the teacher. The Huexotzinco Codex was part of the evidence in a case brought by the Nahuas, Indigenous people of what is now Mexico, against the Spanish administrators, alleging excessive taxation (tribute). This case was won by the Nahuas. In this lesson, students do not learn the full story until the third or fourth class period.

Analyze Documents

Begin with this link to the Library of Congress lesson, “The Huexotzinco Codex”, and have students complete Activity 1, Document Analysis. This should take one class period- approximately one hour.

NOTE TO THE TEACHER: Allow at least 30 minutes before using this lesson the first time, to read through the Library of Congress lesson, download and print out documents for students.

Play a game

Have students sign in and begin the game, AzTech: Meet the Maya. Students should play for about 15 minutes.

Computation – How much was the tribute?

Continue with the second part of Library of Congress lesson, “The Huexotzinco Codex”, and have students complete Activity 2, Computation. After students have completed one tribute sheet and corrected their answers, use this slide presentation to show the connection between the Aztec and Maya codices and our modern system of numbers and graphs. Optionally, have students complete one or two more tribute sheets from the linked lesson. This should take one to two class periods.

Play a Game

At the beginning of class, have students continue the AzTech: Meet the Maya game. Students should play for 15-20 minutes by which time some of the students should have reached the codex activity and explanation in the game.

Write a Narrative Explanation

Continue with the third part of Library of Congress lesson, “The Huexotzinco Codex”, and have students complete Activity 3, Narrative Explanation.

Assessment

Four types of assessments are included; observation of student understanding of historical document analysis in the class discussion, student self-corrected math computation, student written assignments (analysis sheet, observations and scenario outlines) and the math problems in the AzTech game which are scored automatically with data available in teacher reports.

Differentiated instruction (optional)

Advanced Students who complete their assignments early can continue with the AzTech: Meet the Maya game. If they complete this game, they can choose to play AzTech: The Story Begins or AzTech: Empiric Empire.

English learners can play the AzTech : Meet the Maya and AzTech: The Story Begins games in English or Spanish.

Recommended Related Lesson

Counting ropes and rational numbers

Lesson Plan Navajo Culture and ELA

Navajo Culture and ELA

By Christy Hanson

Standards

Dine’ Culture Standards (3.PO2) I will develop an understanding of Dine’ way of life through Iina’. I will implement and recognize the Dine’ lifestyle. I will present the stories related to Land and Water Beings.

Dine Government (3.PO3) Executive Branch (3.PO3): I will describe the purpose of at least one subdivision. Legislative Branch (3.PO3): I will describe the Navajo Nation election process. Judicial Branch (3.PO4): I will analyze the purpose of a judicial system.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RH.6-8.4 Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including vocabulary specific to domains related to history/social studies.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.7.1 Write arguments to support claims with clear reasons and relevant evidence.

⏰ Time

45 minutes

📲 Technology Required

Device with web-browser – Chromebook, laptop or desktop computer, phone or tablet

📃 Summary

Students learn about Diné (Navajo) culture from multiple perspectives, first through a presentation on Navajo tribal government and its three branches (executive, legislative, and judicial) that are modeled after the federal government, as well as its security branch. Also included are four cultural laws governing Navajo leadership. A written assignment exploring roles of effective governance follows as assessment. The lesson concludes with a game, Making Camp Navajo, that discusses Diné traditions in sheep ranching and rug weaving.

Lesson

Presentation on Diné Governance

Use the slide presentation, Navajo Civics, to introduce students to the history and structure of government on the Navajo Nation.

Download this map of the Navajo Nation to view its five agencies: Chinle, Eastern, Fort Defiance, Northern, and Western.

Class Discussion on Important Issues in Governance

Teachers can use the questions on Slide 26 of the presentation or edit the slides to add their own questions.

Writing Assignment

Students select one or more of the writing prompts and write an essay addressing the prompt. Teachers can use slides 27-31 for the prompts or create their own.

Play a Game

The lesson concludes with the Making Camp Navajo game. Students should play through the introduction and then the activities under the LIFE choices.

Choose Numbers, Life or Random
Choices Screen – click LIFE button
Sheep image, weaving image and girl with sheep
Life Choices – Select and Play each of these

Assessment

Three types of assessment are included in this lesson. The brainstorming session provides a gauge of the understanding of the class as a whole of the types of issues that can be addressed by government. The writing assignment serves as an individual assessment of student understanding of government. Teacher reports of data collected automatically in Making Camp Navajo document student completion of the activities.

Discover Dairy: Cow Life Cycle

📖 Standards

CCSS.Math.Content.6.RP.A.1 Understand ratio concepts and use ratio reasoning to solve problems.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.6-8.1 Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of science and technical texts.

📲 Technology Required

Computer with printer to print lab work sheets, for in-class use. Computer or tablet with Internet access for home use.

Heads up! For the lab in this lesson you will need spinach, carrots, cheese sticks, orange juice, and a weight scale and/or measuring cups. It is not required to do the lab 2 component but recommended.

⏰ Time

60-70 minutes

📃 Summary

This cross-curricular lesson is from Discover Dairy. Students read a passage on the life cycle of dairy cows. A guided class discussion answers questions on the life cycle. The lesson concludes with a challenging lab in which students create a healthy cow diet.

Lesson

NOTE: While we create most lessons on the Growing Math site ourselves, we do include links to other lessons that are exemplary in their cross-curricular, standards-based design. This lesson is one of two “lessons we love” from Discover Dairy. The entire 14-page guide with two lessons can be downloaded here, including reading passages, lab assignments and answer keys.

You can also go to the Discover Dairy site, which requires a free registration and login to download individual parts of the lesson and see the other lessons they have available.

Read a passage on the life cycle of a dairy cow

You’ll find this on page 14 of the handout linked above or download both reading assignments here (it’s only two pages) or copy the link to assign in your Google classroom to read on line.

Class Discussion on Life Cycle

Using the discussion questions on page 4 of the complete lesson plan, discuss the dairy cow life cycle with students based on their knowledge from the reading.

dairy cow

Lab Exercise #2 Feeding a Dairy Cow

Each student or group will need a scale or measuring cup and the following:

  • 1 cup spinach
  • Baby or whole carrots
  • 1 cheese stick
  • One 12 oz. cup of orange juice

Distribute the materials needed and the lab assignment (pages 11 and 12 of the complete lesson plan or you can link directly to those here, if you want to assign in Google classroom or other management system. Note that link includes both labs 1 and 2.) Lab explanation from page 5 of the complete lesson plan.

Teachers should explain that a healthy, well-cared-for cow will give more milk. The way farmers care for their cows and how they feed them has helped to increase the amount of milk cows give over the past 50 years.  Just like our diets, a cow’s diet must be balanced based on her stage of life. For instance, a baby calf requires higher energy foods to fuel her rapid growth.  A cow that has just given birth requires higher levels of certain nutrients to replenish her body. Farmers must adjust rations to accommodate those needs.  Farmers work closely with an animal nutritionist and use a variety of feed products to balance cows’ diets to meet their precise nutrient needs using a variety of feed products.  Farmers use a large feeding scale to make sure each cow gets the right amount of each feed. Those feeds are blended together to provide a balanced diet called a Total Mixed Ration (TMR). During the lab, students should use the carrots, celery, cheese and orange juice to balance a diet to meet the required nutrients listed on the lab worksheet. They should use a weight scale to measure the right amount of each feed. If they don’t have a weight scale, they can use measuring cups to determine the amount. Complete the ratios in the worksheet.

– Discovery Dairy

Answer keys for this lab exercise as well as for the lab for the selective breeding lesson can be found here.

Review and Summarize Dairy Cow Life Cycle: What We’ve Learned

Review questions and summary can be found on pages 5 and 6 of the complete lesson plan.

ASSESSMENT

This lesson includes three types of assessment – the initial class discussion gives an estimate of the general class understanding of the dairy cow life cycle. The lab provides individual student data on mastery of both the science and math concepts. The concluding review questions can be poised to the whole class or given to students as a quiz.

Related lesson

Discover Dairy: Selective Breeding

Financial Literacy Starts with Time Management

by Janna Jensen

📖Standards

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.8.4 Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.

📲Technology Required

Any Internet enabled device

Time

Day 1: 45 minutes, Day 2 (a week later): 30 minutes

📃Summary

Students watch a 12-minute video that gives time management tips for students. They complete a worksheet to assess where they spend their time and identify changes they would like to make. As a class, students discuss their own time management strategies. Out of class, students track their time usage for a week. In the follow-up lesson, students review in writing and class discussion how well they predicted their time usage and strategies for improving time management in the future.

Lesson

Discuss how time management relates to financial literacy

We recommend introducing the lesson with a brief discussion of how time management relates to financial literacy. We’ve all heard that time is money, so this 10-lesson unit on financial literacy begins with time management. Truly, students need to find the time to get a job, keep a job or write a budget, so it starts here.

Watch a video on time management

A 12-minute video on how to manage your time as a student

Writing Assignment

Have students download and complete the time management tips worksheet. You can copy and paste the instructions below into your Google classroom or other classroom management system.

Instructions for time management worksheet

This is an assignment that we will be using throughout the financial literacy unit. AFTER you have watched the assigned video, start today with pages 2 and 3 of the worksheet.

  1. Download the time management worksheet.
  2. Open a Google doc and answer the 3 questions from page 2 on how you spend your time, your priorities and what you want to stop doing.
  3. On page 3 of the worksheet, Ellen discusses four methods of time management. In your Google doc, answer these questions – Which one appeals to you the most? Why do you think that will work for you? ANSWER IN COMPLETE SENTENCES. For example, “I think the time blocking would work best for me because I tend to get bored and jump from one task to another. That wastes a lot of time remembering where I left off.”

Track Your Time Homework

You can copy and paste the instructions below into your Google classroom or other classroom management system.

Instructions for time tracking assignment

Where does the time go? If you are like most people, you did not come up with 24 hours accounted for in your time management worksheet assignment. For the next week, track how you spend your time each day. The easiest way to do this for most people is using the notes app on their phone. If you don’t have your phone with you all of the time, a piece of paper and a pen will work just as well.

  • EVERY day for one week, record how you spend your time. For example, “Midnight to 7am – sleeping. 7-8 Got ready for school. 8-8:30 Bus to school. 8:30- 2:30 – classes. 2:30 – 4:30 basketball practice. 4:30-5 Bus home. 5-6 Dinner. 6-7 Study. 7-8 Played GTA game. 8-9 Talk to friend online 9-9:30 study 9:30 – 11 Watch YouTube. 11-12 Sleep.”
  • Your activities must add up to 24 hours each day.
  • The easiest way to keep an accurate account is to write down how many minutes or hours you spent immediately after you finish doing something, for example, 12:00- 12:15 TikTok

HINT: To spur the next week’s discussion, it may be helpful for the teacher to do this activity as well.

DISCUSSION

After watching the video and answering the questions in writing, students discuss the following questions as a class. You may wish to simply ask each question, or use this slides presentation to show the questions. Students learning at home can answer the questions in writing.

  • What are some things you do to try to be efficient with your time?
  • Do you have a strategy for your time management?
  • How could you become better at time management? Did you identify any ways you spend your time that you would like to change?

DAY 2 (A week after Day 1)

Complete Written and Reading Assignment

Students complete page 4 of the time management worksheet and read tips on page 5.

DISCUSSION

After completing the written assignment, students discuss questions as a class. You may wish to simply ask each question, or use this slide presentation to show the questions. Students learning at home can answer the questions in writing.

  • Did anything about how you spent your time surprise you? Did you spend more or less time on some activities than you thought you did?
  • How helpful do you think tracking your time was for you?
  • Did you use any of the time management strategies suggested in the video? If so, how did those work for you?

HINT: It may be helpful to lead off the discussion with your own answers to these questions.

Assessment

Students will submit responses to worksheet questions for teacher comment. Since this assignment is primarily asking for student opinions, we recommend marking the worksheet assignment as 100% if completed with the student using complete sentences to answer the question regarding page 3, 90% if all questions are answered but not with complete sentences.

For the time tracking assignment

State Standards

ND STATE STANDARDS: 

North Dakota Business Education Standard 3.3a.1.13   Describe appropriate time management techniques and their application/transference to the workplace.

Decimals, Epidemics & Fly Vomit – It’s science!

📖Standards

CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.5.NBT.B.7 Add, subtract, multiply, and divide decimals to hundredths

CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.5.MD.A.1 Convert among different-sized standard measurement units within a given measurement system (e.g., convert 5 cm to 0.05 m), and use these conversions in solving multi-step, real world problems.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.6.6 Acquire and use accurately grade-appropriate general academic and domain-specific words and phrases; gather vocabulary knowledge when considering a word or phrase important to comprehension or expression.

Technology

Students will need a phone or tablet to play the game.

Time

75 minutes

Lesson Summary

Learn decimals while weighing a flies and the food they eat. The lesson begins with a game on decimals and the Aztec smallpox epidemic, then moves to another disease spreader – flies. Students learn the role flies play in our ecosystem, how they eat and reproduce.

Lesson

1. Play a game

Play AzTech: Empiric Empire to learn basic conversions from fractions to decimals. Empiric Empire is available free for iPad or iPhone and for Android phones. As an added bonus, students will also learn about epidemics. It’s worth mentioning that the smallpox epidemic was spread by viruses but a lot of other diseases are spread by flies.

Note: For summer learning, you may want to just copy the paragraph above into your Google classroom for students to download the games to their phones.

2. Watch a video

I pasted in a link starting after the first minute because that is mostly telling you to like/ subscribe and comment. Ah, YouTube!

Bell Ringer – What if flies went extinct ?  This 7:33  minute video discusses flies as agricultural pests and disease vectors, but also their benefits as scavengers eating up decaying carcasses, pollinators and animal feed.

Here is the link if you’d like to post in your Google classroom or other CMS for students to watch at home. https://youtu.be/80Iqp6bqc-0?t=76

3. Read about flies & perform a demonstration

Recommended reading: Eat like a house fly. Houseflies and barf

What really happens when a house fly lands on your food? Print out this page from Science World – Canada , include the link in your Google classroom or other CMS for students to read, or just read the page to students during class. The demonstration requires vinegar, jello and a turkey baster – things many people have around the house or can pick up easily at a local store. It also includes a list of vocabulary words and definitions, which fits perfectly with our philosophy of direct teaching of academic language.

4. Complete word journal

This lesson provides the opportunity for students to learn many words, in the reading, in the videos and possibly in the Empiric Empire game as well. Students add words or terms with which they are unfamiliar to their word journal. Some teachers call it a personal dictionary, to others it’s a word journal. Regardless, the goal is the same, for students to record new words, give a dictionary definition and “make the word their own”. This can be done by rewriting the definition in their own words, using the word in a sentence or including an illustration of the word.

Two dictionary sites to recommend for definitions are below. An added bonus to mention to students is that they can hear words pronounced.

Since students often ask for an example, here is an example you can link in your lesson

The personal dictionary assignment, with all links, can be found here. Feel free to copy and paste into your Google classroom or other site, or print out for your class.

5. Presentation on Decimals in Science (Fly Experiment)

Give this presentation on using decimals to weigh flies, their containers and the food they eat to answer the question, “Do flies really eat 10 times their weight each day?”

Watch a second video

I recommend watching the first 5 1/2 minutes of the Facts About Flies – Secret Nature video  to give the students some idea about both flies as vectors of disease but also important scavengers consuming decaying material. The full documentary is 49 minutes, which I personally found to be more about flies than I wanted to know.

Assessment

Three types of assessment are included in this lesson.

  1. The Word Journal assignment is completed individually and submitted.
  2. Math questions answered within the Empiric Empire game are scored automatically with immediate feedback and student results can be viewed in the teacher reports.
  3. Math questions posed within the presentation can be answered as a whole class, having students hold up a card with their answer or with individual students responding and asking the rest of the class to agree or disagree.


Differentiated instruction

Review of Decimal Addition

One-minute step-by-step video from TeacherTube on Adding Decimals may be helpful for students who need a review of decimal addition.

Watch the whole video

For students who are extremely interested in insects, watching the entire 49 minute video of Facts about Flies will satisfy their curiosity

Experiments with fly larva

For teachers who want to do a deep dive into the role flies in consuming food waste, the experiment above uses 100 black soldier fly larvae. I am extremely impressed with this lesson because not only does it include a link to where to buy maggots (on Amazon, of course) but also answers the obvious question of what do you do with 100 fly larvae after your experiment is over. The answer is that you feed these to your class reptile. Would I bring 100 maggots into my classroom? Not in a million years, but that is why I am not an entomologist.

You DO have a class snake, don’t you?

Analogies with sheep and goats

📖Standard

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.7.5.B Use the relationship between particular words (e.g., synonym/antonym, analogy) to better understand each of the words.

Dine’ Culture Standards (3.PO2) I will develop an understanding of Dine’ way of life through Iina’. I will implement and recognize the Dine’ lifestyle. I will present the stories related to Land and Water Beings.

CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.7.EE.B.3 Solve multi-step real-life and mathematical problems posed with positive and negative rational numbers in any form (whole numbers, fractions, and decimals)

LESSON TIME

25 -30 minutes including game play

📲TECHNOLOGY REQUIRED

A device with a web-browser – PC, Mac or Chromebook – or phone or tablet.

📃Summary

Students play a game which teaches about raising lambs, the uses of sheep and the ratio of single to twin lambs. The lesson ends with definitions of sheep and goat vocabulary and examples of analogies with sheep and goats. Optionally, students may complete a word journal assignment.

📚Lesson

Start with a game

Students begin by playing Making Camp Navajo. You can just copy and paste these instructions into your Google classroom or other system, or just copy and show in a projector on the board – old school rules!

You can assign your students usernames and passwords or you can send us a list and we will register your students for you. Email the list to growingmath@7generationgames.com . Your students can create their own usernames and password but we do not recommend this, mostly because they will forget what they entered.


Play Making Camp Navajo

There are three activities students should play. If you have not played before, the game will start you at the introduction. If you are a returning user, log in and click on the Life tab.

Earn page with choices of Numbers, life and random

Learn about sheep in Navajo daily life

On the LIFE page, you’ll see two photos with sheep in them. Play both of those sections.

Next, go to the numbers page and pick this option to learn a little more about sheep.

Many lambs

Now that you have read the instructions, here is the link to go to Making Camp Navajo.


Learn the vocabulary

Now that students have learned about sheep, let’s learn some sheep and goat vocabulary using this Google slides presentation. The presentation ends with two examples of analogies, then asks the students to give their own examples of analogies.

Assessment

This lesson has two types of assessment. Making Camp Navajo automatically records students answer to problems in the three game activities, assessing the Diné and math standards. The analogies produced by students address the ELA standard.

Differentiated Instruction

For students who struggle with vocabulary, including English learners, you may wish to include a word journal assignment. Some teachers call it a personal dictionary. Regardless, the goal is the same, for students to record new words, give a dictionary definition and “make the word their own”. This can be done by rewriting the definition in their own words, using the word in a sentence or including an illustration of the word.

Two dictionary sites to recommend for definitions are below. An added bonus to mention to students is that they can hear words pronounced.

Since students often ask for an example, here is an example you can link in your lesson.

The personal dictionary assignment, with all links, can be found here. Feel free to copy and paste into your Google classroom or other site, or print out for your class.

Related lesson

The Navajo-Churro: America’s first domestic sheep

The Navajo-Churro: America’s First Domestic Sheep

📖STANDARD

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RH.6-8.2 Determine the central ideas or information of a primary or secondary source; provide an accurate summary of the source distinct from prior knowledge or opinions.

7th-8th Diné History Standards – I will understand historical/factual events, people and symbols that influence my family. Concept 1.PO2.  I will identify an event relating to important people in Diné history.

LESSON TIME

90 minutes including time for research

📃SUMMARY

Vocabulary and historical events key to Navajo sheep farming are provided in a slide presentation. Students learn more about Navajo agriculture and history through a video, their own research, and a game combining math and history. Academic vocabulary is at the 7th grade level.

📚Lesson

Navajo-Churros: America’s First Domestic Sheep

Introduce sheep farming in Navajo and southwest history with this presentation, for an editable Google slides version, go here. The same presentation as a PowerPoint is found here. Students will learn vocabulary words related to general livestock farming and specifically to sheep.

VIDEO: Irene’s Churro Lambs

YouTube video: Irene’s Churro Lambs

Research and Writing Assignments

This assignment has two parts. In the first part, students research one of these events in history to learn more about it. They locate a primary source and a secondary source with citations, and then write an objective summary. In Part B, students select two research questions of interest, from a list provided, and conduct research to find the answers. A Google doc of the assignment can be found here.

Answer key for Part B can be found here.

Differentiated Instruction: Accommodations for learners with special needs

For the assignment above, for learners with special needs, you may wish to assign only one of the two parts. Generally, we would assign Part B, finding the answers to research questions. This is also a modification for students who are English language learners.

GAME: Making Camp Navajo LIFE Module 

Students can play the three Making Camp Navajo modules for 20 minutes. The following instructions can be copied into Google classroom, pasted into a Zoom chat or given in class.

Go to Making Camp Navajo https://7generationgames.com/making_camp_navajo/

Play through until you reach the LIFE tab and play all of the activities you find there.

These are the three activities you will play

  • LOL: Lots on Lambs
  • The Many Uses of Sheep
  • Rug Design 

ASSESSMENT

This lesson includes three forms of assessment

  1. Objective Summary of Research (written assignment)
  2. Research to answer questions on an event with primary/secondary sources
  3. Making Camp Navajo Gameplay

Making Camp Navajo – Student Activities completed can be seen in the Making Camp Navajo teacher reports

  1. Assessment in lamb care/lambing season. (True or False)
  2. Assessment in the Many Uses of Sheep for Navajo history. (Matching game)
  3. Students can screenshot a picture of their rug design, like below. 

Weaving in Navajo history and culture

by Christy Hanson

📖 STANDARD:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RH.6-8.4 Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including vocabulary specific to domains related to history/social studies.
Dine’ Content Standard for Grades 7-8 (Government) 4.PO.2 – I will identify changes in customs and goods.
Dine’ Content Standard for Grades 7-8 (Culture) 1.PO.2 – I will show responsibility by knowing the stories related to my belongings.

⏰ Time

30 minutes

📲 Technology required

This lesson requires a Chromebook, PC or Mac computer with an Internet connection.

📃 Summary

Students watch a video by Albert Brent Chase, a longtime Navajo culture educator. Next, students read a passage on sheep resources and rug weaving in Navajo history. The video, How It’s Made: Navajo Rugs is also provided in this lesson. Students end the lesson playing Making Camp Navajo and designing their own rugs.

📚 Lesson

Set up the lesson by watching a video

Arizona lands rug, by Albert Chase

In this five-minute video, Navajo weaver Albert Chase gives an overview of creating a pictorial rug with Germantown yarn.

Read a passage on sheep resources after the Navajo Long Walk

The article , Post-Long Walk Sheep Resources and Rug Weaving , can be added to your own Google drive and assigned to students. It can be printed out or students can complete on their computers.

Complete two vocabulary assignments

Students provide definitions of vocabulary words based only on the context clues from the reading assignment. Next, they look up the definition of each word in the dictionary and compare their original definitions with those in the dictionary.

The ANSWER KEY for questions assigned on the reading can be found here.

Optional (but highly recommended) video on how Navajo rugs are made

This five-minute video covers every aspect of rug-making from creating yarn from raw wool to creating different colors of dye to weaving on a loom.

Make their own rugs in the Making Camp Navajo game

This game teaches more information about Navajo weaving and allows the students to weave their own virtual rugs. Instructions are below and can also be found in this Google doc that can be added to your Google classroom.

Instructions for students:

  1. Go to the Games Portal for Kids here https://www.growingmath.org/games-portal-for-kids/
  2. Scroll down and select Making Camp Navajo
  3. Go to the page that gives choices of numbers, life or random. Pick LIFE. (If this is your first time playing the game, you will have to play through the introduction to get to this page.
  4. Select the middle picture, the one with the woman weaving, to learn more about Navajo weaving and make your own rugs.
Earn page with choices of Numbers, life and random

Assessment

This lesson plan is assessed through the student assignments for vocabulary definitions. The student completion of the rug-making assignment can be documented by screenshots of their rugs. Students design a digital rug design in the Rug Design Tool and share the results with the class. The teacher can then post them in an online gallery for everyone to see.

Calendar example with grazing lands

Making a Calendar with PowerPoint

by Janna Jensen

📖 Standard

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.WHST.6-8.6
Use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing and present the relationships between information and ideas clearly and efficiently.

⏰ Time

200 minutes (approximately 5 class periods)

📲 Technology Required

Students will use the Internet to find appropriate images to reflect tasks typically accomplished during a specific month. Students will need access to a device with PowerPoint to create calendar.

📃 Summary

This lesson plan allows students to explore agricultural subjects of interest to create an informational calendar. Students are to pick a field in agricultural and create a calendar outlining the big tasks performed each month. At the end of the project, students perform a self-assessment.

NOTE: While this assignment focuses on agriculture, it could be modified for any subject – science, social studies, literature, and, certainly, art.

Don’t have PowerPoint but you use Google Slides? Check out this lesson.

📚 Lesson

Introduce Assignment to Students

Calendar Assignment

In this assignment, you will be creating a personalized calendar using PowerPoint. Your calendar must consist of a minimum of 13 pages an include the following:

  1. A title slide with introduction of the topic.
  2. A page for each month with:
    1. An image related to your topic
    2. Text explaining the image and its relationship to the topic.

See the Agriculture Calendar for an example.

Video or Presentation on Creating Calendar with PowerPoint

Classroom Presentation

Use this PowerPoint of Instructions on how to create a calendar with PowerPoint. It is a brief 3-5 minute explanation. Instructions are also available in Google Slides format.

Video

This video is only 1:33 and shows using PowerPoint to create a calendar

Students can watch the video above, which has only music, no voice over, so it will be usable even if your students don’t have headphones or your computers don’t have speakers. It is also a good review if students are learning at home or need an extra reminder.

Make a personalized gift

I laminate each page in the calendar and bind the pages for a personalized gift from students to parents or other special people in their lives. If you have limited funds, you can just laminate the first and last page for durability, or skip lamination altogether if you don’t have a laminator.

If you don’t have a binding machine, you can just use a 3-hole punch and twist ties from cables or bags of bread. Ask the lunchroom staff to save some for you.

Assessment

Students perform a self-assessment shown below.

State Standards: North Dakota

K-5.IAI.9 Organize information using technology and other tools.


TE.K-5.MTL.11 Use technology to gather and share information with a variety of audiences in ways that others can view, use, and assess.