This lesson was developed as part of the San Diego Unified School District's Triton Project, a federally funded Technology Innovation Challenge Grant. This unit will complement the third grade Social Studies curriculum's study of Native Americans. It will emphasize the Hopi, Navajo, Pueblo, Western Apache, and Zuni Native Americans.
Your students will learn about the locations, the different types of homes, foods, clothing, and beliefs of the previously mentioned Native American tribes.
This lesson is written to complement the fifth grade History-Social Science curriculum. It also includes language arts, geography, and art. This lesson can easily be extended to different regions or grade levels by changing Activity 1 or expanding the expectations of any of the other activities.
H-SS Content Standards
Language Arts Standards
This unit will take approximately two weeks during the Social Studies class time. Students will have the opportunity to work independently or in small groups. Many students would rather do this type of project with a partner than by themselves. This is great. You may choose to assign any task as a group or individual project. An easy way to make sure all the tribes are covered is to split your class into the five tribes. This would make sure that all the tribes are explained and discovered. Our classes are filled with individuals which is typical of this age level. Working cooperatively does not always work well. Thus we have foreseen the following scenario:
Activity 1 - individual work
Activity 2 - group or partner work
Activity 3 - individual work
Activity 4 - individual or partner work
Activity 5 - individual or partner work
The students' work may be posted on the Web. Remember to find out what your District guidelines say about posting student work on the web. The posting of the work may need to be overseen by an aide, teacher, or parent helper. It is helpful to do this part of the activity in a computer lab as a class if you can. It will help with the use of computer time and also teach an important word processing lesson. Students may have time to get direction about the use of Tabs and even Spell-Check.
Each student will need a journal for writing. You will need to copy off the chart for Activity 2 and may want to have a hard copy of the Venn diagram also. You may click here and make a hard copy for your use.
It would be helpful to read a book such as Knots on a Counting Rope or Arrow to the Sun as a class before beginning this unit. Some useful materials to enhance student learning about these five southwestern tribes are listed below:
Film: North America.
You will need to use a scanner if you want to put your student's work on the web. You will also need to use a word processor, such as Claris Works.
Students who are reading and writing at a third grade level and are computer-literate will not have trouble with this unit. It will be helpful to have a large map of the Southwestern United States accessible. This unit is written for the use of novice teachers, but experienced teachers will enjoy it, too. The teacher may learn as much as the children will about these tribes.
Collect the completed charts. Collect also the Venn diagram for evaluation purposes. Were they able to complete it? Did they use the information gathered to write their paragraphs? The following rubric will be used to evaluate the students' journal-reports.
The lesson activities that are used follow Bloom's Taxonomy ( knowledge, application,analysis, evaluation, and synthesis). You may delete any activity that you feel is too difficult for your students. You may use other regions or tribes by changing the map in Activity#1 and finding a link to match your needs. There are many ways to change the assignments such as comparing two tribes from the 1800s instead of then and now comparison. We have also had students build homes instead of draw them, or construct a diorama of a tribe.
This lesson is important in that it helps students to understand the relationship that exists between the environment in which they live and how they live. The world Native Americans lived in and how they lived will help them see this strong relationship. We must help them see how and why we must take care of our environment now.
This lesson will also help students to understand and respect other cultures. Hopefully, they will gain respect and understanding of these Southwestern cultures. Noticing the way Native Americans worlds changed as other's views were imposed upon them will help students to realize that how they see and accept other cultures today does matter. This will help them keep an open-mind when they encounter new cultures in the world today.
Last updated on Jan. 06, 2004 by Donna Skahill and Janice Kennerly
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