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Help your middle schoolers recognize the similarities and differences between the games they play and those played by pioneer children. Using the Internet, they research a game of their choice and discover how it has evolved over time. To end the lesson, they play one of the pioneer games. Focus on research techniques and citing evidence to extend your lesson.
Explore the lives of American Indians and early settlers in the state of Ohio. Young native Ohioans (or members of another state) research primary and secondary multimedia sources that detail the history between American Indians and Ohio settlers. Then they produce a talk show where they role-play the history between the two groups. As a cumulative activity, they make a timeline of significant events from that time period.
High schoolers explore how historical documents have clarified and secured individual rights for citizens and outlined the role of government in the United States. Through discussion and text reading, they explain the American beliefs and principles reflected in the Constitution and discover the rights guaranteed by the Constitution are enforced.
Twelfth graders discuss the probability of imposing a democracy in a country in which there is no history of this type of government being successful. Using the internet, they work together to research Japan's experience with democracy and the challenges it faced doing so. They also compare and contrast the United States Constitution with the Japanese Constitution.
Eighth graders identify reasons why settlers bought land from the railroad and not a Homestead grant. Using that information, they compare and contrast the types of land given in each situation. They discuss the reasons why given families chose the community they did to live in.
High schoolers are introduced to the Spanish Royal Family. In groups, they practice pronouncing vocabulary about family members and compare their own family to the Royal Family. They also compare and contrast the concepts of representative democracy with a constitutional monarchy and use the internet to research controversial topics involving the Royal Family today.
A Six-Trait Writing lesson helps your middle schoolers liven up their word choice and shows them how to evaluate their own writing. Class members take a close look at the language used in poems by Shakespeare, Kipling, Longfellow, and others, and then draft their own piece of writing. Suggested poem list, discussion questions for each poem, a writing rubric, and paragraph examples are included in this six-day, richly detailed plan.